I didn't get to watch the Samuel Alito hearings again. Two 10 1/2-hour days in a row are draining. It should hopefully slow down a little after tomorrow and I can really dig into this stuff.
I've managed to do a little catch-up blog and newspaper article reading and a couple of things strike me about these hearings.
First, hearings are never really hearings. They're not interested in hearing what the nominee has to say. Every single senator pretty much made up their mind on how they would vote before Alito even said a word. Sen. Chuck "credit report" Schumer continually states that he hasn't made a decision on how he will vote, but I'll donate $20 bucks to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee if he votes for Judge Alito.
Second, these hearings are markedly different from the hearings for John Roberts. While there was some hostility towards Roberts from Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, that was "It's a Small World" compared to what Alito's been going through. This is more reminiscent of the hearings for judge Charles Pickering to be a circuit court judge where Democrats tried to tar as a racist the man who as a district attorney in the 60s in the South had the guts to take on the grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.
It's often been said that Republicans believe Democrats are stupid and Democrats believe Republicans are evil. Well, if you listened to the Democrats on that committee and the special interest groups goading them on, then you too would come to the conclusion that Alito is evil.
Thirdly, it's interesting that Democrats are attempting to tar Alito with anything anyone ever associated with Concerned Alumni of Princeton ever wrote. Alito has said he joined the group, paying dues, because they were protesting Princeton's efforts to kick the ROTC off campus. But now you've got Kennedy and others practicing the worst sort of guilt-by-association. It really is reminiscent of the tactics of Joseph McCarthy -- who Democrats constantly demonize. I guess any tactics, however odious, are valid when you're using them against a Republican.