The Democrats' orgy over retiring Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor is just one fraudulent component of their grand con game in preparation for war over her successor.
Oh, sure, they approve of O'Connor's steadfast protection of the Court's pro-abortion precedent. And they appreciate other positions she took in furtherance of their policy agenda, but she's hardly their ideal jurist. After all, she sided with the majority in "selecting" George W. Bush president.
Their recent, unified celebration of O'Connor is part of their cynical calculation to position themselves as mainstream and Republicans as extremists. They see this as an essential foundation in their quest to garner the requisite public support to condone their imminent filibuster of the person President Bush nominates to replace O'Connor. This is one of the many reasons we can dismiss as disingenuous their denials that public interest groups and public opinion will matter in this process.
But do not dismiss the magnitude of the deception they are orchestrating here. They are hoping to convince the people that any nominee who is reputed to be an originalist is an extremist -- "outside the broad mainstream." Because they view the Court as a co-equal policy-making branch of government, they are treating the confirmation process as another national election.
Their bogus praise for O'Connor is simply the first step in their ruse. By lauding her as a "mainstream conservative," they lay the groundwork for labeling anyone less activist than her an extremist.
But of course we already know they will vilify and pillory with fierce intensity any nominee who opposes legislating from the bench, or has a conservative pedigree, especially on abortion and other social issues.
The maddening thing about this is that these liberals are the ones so outside the political mainstream. Their ideology has been soundly rejected in successive national elections. President Bush campaigned on a clearly articulated promise to appoint appellate judges in the mold of justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, and it is reasonable to infer the public, in re-electing him, had no major objections to his promise. Thus, any nomination he makes in fulfillment of it, by definition should not be regarded as outside the mainstream.
Beyond that, have you ever considered the underlying substance of the positions liberals are trying to pass off as mainstream? To them, any nominee who is likely to adhere to the role the Framers envisioned for appellate judges is a right-wing extremist. Any judge who pledges to interpret the Constitution according to its plain meaning and the Framers' original intent will be deemed an extremist. Any nominee who just might be have the audacity and independence -- a trait they pretend to admire -- to reject the Roe v. Wade abortion precedent, will be stamped an extremist. Only those certain to blindly follow the abominable, unconstitutional line of cases Roe ushered in will be hailed as a "consensus building" mainstream, centrist judge "who will bring us all together" -- as if that's the function of a Supreme Court justice.
Do you suppose it's ever occurred to these people that abortion was not quite as divisive an issue when its legality was determined by the bodies politic of the several states -- a cabal liberals simply cannot afford to entrust with policy decisions?
The dirty little secret is that the liberals are the extremists in this whole process. They are the ones who deny popular sovereignty by using the unelected courts to thwart the will of the people. They refuse to allow state legislatures to set policy when it is not consistent with their superior enlightened vision and they refuse to allow the Senate majority to perform its advice and consent role by their unprecedented partisan filibustering of judicial nominees. They won't even admit their liberalism, which is quite curious if they truly believe their ideas are mainstream.
They are afraid to leave the battles of the Culture War to be waged at the level of the culture and by the duly elected political branches. They insist on using the courts to cram social change down the people's throats -- because they know what's better for them. They are the ones who want the Court -- without any constitutional authority -- to foist customs and laws of foreign countries onto our jurisprudence.
So the next time these lockstep liberals tell us they are in the mainstream, remember that they not only aren't mainstream, they have contempt for those who are and for the expressed will of the people. And, they'll use any means necessary -- including propaganda -- to subvert the will of the people they pretend to honor.