"Do you accept it?" asked Hatch.
"Certainly," said Brown.
She later made clear she believes appellate judges are bound to follow precedents set by the Supreme Court. But that was not good enough for Senate Democrats. They do not want to allow any judge anywhere near the Supreme Court who will not swear unwavering devotion to abortion-on-demand by judicial fiat. In other words, Janice Brown is facing a new form of discrimination: She is seeking a position for which Democrats will not approve any intellectually honest person.
For almost two years now, she has been the target of a Democratic filibuster. In the last Congress, she won the support of 53 senators, including two Democrats. But because current Senate rules allow a minority of just 40 senators to indefinitely block a final vote on a judicial nominee, her nomination has languished.
Last week, the Senate Judiciary Committee sent her nomination back to the Senate floor on a party-line vote.
Now comes the question: Will the 55-member Republican Senate majority allow Brown to be blocked by 40 Democrats again? Or will it muster the courage to stand up against the predictable bad coverage it will receive from the establishment media and change a Senate rule that a minority is abusing to seize what amounts to a 40-vote veto over the majority's constitutional authority to provide advise and consent on presidential nominations?
If there ever was a judicial nominee worth fighting for, Brown is it. The time for a showdown is now.
When she was a child in the South, Senate Democrats used the filibuster to defend segregation and keep Janice Brown out of whites-only schools and accommodations. Today, they are using it to keep her off the federal bench. Now, no less than then, they are using the tactic to maintain a morally indefensible policy they fear would be crushed by sustained national attention and debate.
Republicans must not let them get away with it.