Chip Pickering

John McCain led a group of 14 Senators and provided an avenue of confirmation for Bush's appeals court nominees and later, Sam Alito and John Roberts. Some conservatives wish the Senate had changed the rules to allow confirmation by simple majority and reject the Democratic filibusters once and for all. I am sympathetic to those views, but that would have crippled comity in the Senate and taken cooperation to an all time low. Our Republican legislative agenda would have been the victim of our efforts to improve the judiciary. John McCain understood this and found a political means to achieve his and President Bush's ideological goals: the confirmation of originalists to the federal bench.

By employing the politics of results, McCain delivered victories: we confirmed our nominees, we continued our Republican agenda in the Senate, and we maintained a political issue for the campaigns. Most importantly, his strategy created a mechanism making it virtually impossible for the Democrats to prevent the confirmation of John Roberts and Sam Alito to the High Court.

Roberts and Alito join with Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia – also nominees supported for confirmation by McCain in the Senate – to form the nucleus of the conservative coalition on the Supreme Court. The Court decisions empowered by this coalition create an enduring legacy to the presidents who nominated these individuals and the Senators who confirmed them. It is an enduring legacy to our conservative movement – from the grassroots to the netroots. Our campaigns and even policies can be fleeting without the proper guardians of the Constitution. But it is the politics of results that make the confirmation of these justices possible.

We can trust John McCain's consistent and unwavering judicial philosophy, and he knows how to get nominees confirmed in the Senate. In thirty years, the enduring judiciary may be more the legacy of a President McCain than his wartime actions, domestic policies, or international agreements.

Six-term Congressman Chip Pickering serves as Mississippi State Chairman and Co-Chairman of the Southern Region for McCain 2008. He was Mississippi co-chairman in 2000 and 2004 for Bush for President.


Chip Pickering

Six-term Congressman Chip Pickering serves as Mississippi State Chairman and Co-Chairman of the Southern Region for McCain 2008. He was Mississippi co-chairman in 2000 and 2004 for Bush for President.

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