Thursday, August 6, 2009

"Elections have consequences"

This was the reasoning of Lindsey Graham, US senator from South Carolina for voting in favor of Sonya Sotomayor. I won't criticize his voting for her, or against her (if he had), but his logic here is terrible. He goes on to essentially say that Obama is president and it is the duty of the Senate to confirm the justices that he brings to them.


It is not the job of the Senate to bow down to the President. If anything it would be the opposite, to fight him, to make him justify everything he does and says. Remember checks and balances?

I'll make a small concession: if Obama had 100% of the vote (okay 99.99%, since I think some people have such flawed minds that their votes really should be counted as double for the other candidate), then I'd say that Congress should work with him very closely, almost to the point of doing everything he asks. In that improbably scenario he would have the mandate of the American people. But even still, it would not be right to do everything he asks.

Obama clearly won. We're not looking at a slim victory (if even that) like 2000. He won. However he did not carry the nation. There was still a very large block of voters who voted against him. In South Carolina there was a large block who voted against him. They would not want to see their representative betray them by blindly following the man they voted again. He should be representing them and their views, not to say he should blindly follow them, but nevertheless, they count.

Where was I? Oh right: Just because Obama won the election doesn't mean that his justices get in automatically. Obviously they must be qualified. Sotomayor is. They must also have the ability to be unbiased, or at least not blatantly biased like most people. I'd hardly expect anyone to be perfectly unbiased, that just isn't possible for humans. If you claim you're unbiased you're either lying or not human, either way, you should feel bad (advanced alien races excluded).

In related news, the NRA needs to shut the fuck up. A vote for her is counted as a vote against guns rights according to them. America would be much better off if the NRA and similar ideological organizations would all die in a fire.

In other related news, I suggest reading Where the Right Went Wrong. I don't agree with much of it, but it's still worth reading. Sadly, he misses the biggest part where the right went wrong: getting taken over by Christian fundamentalists. The conservative movement was subverted and destroyed just so the Republican Party could get more votes. Skip that chapter and I hope you'll find it to be a good read.


Unknown said...

I believe that our government's basic structure is the best the world has ever seen (I am totally biased!). One of the great features the founders put in was to make it very, very difficult for laws to pass, justices to be appointed, etc., etc., etc...

If I wanted all the president's plans to come to fruition easily and without debate (I'm not referring to Obama in particular, but any president at any time) then I'd freakin move to Cuba!

Congressmen are sent to represent their State in Washington, not capitulate to the President's every word without thought or debate. If only George Washington would have accepted the position as King of America! :)

Good post, gets my heart rate up every time.

Klepsacovic said...

The strangest part: when I went to his website to make sure I had his name spelled properly, the first thing I saw was him saying he was voting against cash for clunkers. Hm. Do I detect pandering to Hispanic voters rather than blind agreement with the President? Yes. But then if he's just pandering, why vote against a very popular program? Maybe he screwed up and let conservatism actually guide his vote. Er, since text doesn't translate it well: that was supposed to be a joke about follow one's beliefs being politically risky compared to pandering.

I really wish conservatives weren't being so damn stupid ever since oh, Reagan (I mean when they voted for him, not that they went downhill after him). I like Obama, but I also know that he needs intelligent opposition. It would force him to refine his proposals more and to be better than he is currently.