Monday, May 15, 2006

Kavanaugh Vote Next Week

According to National Journal (no link), the Kavanaugh nomination will come to the Senate floor next week:

Outlook. The Senate is expected to vote late next week on Brett Kavanaugh's nomination to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Senators are likely to spend late nights this week voting on contentious legislation to change immigration laws and bolster border security. A senior GOP leadership aide said today the chamber would need to work through Friday and early next week to finish a measure. "That leaves plenty of room for Kavanaugh," said the aide, adding Republican leaders could also schedule floor time for a FY06 emergency supplemental conference report or a deal on pension legislation if available. The aide added other judicial nominations could also get a vote. Republicans and Democrats are preparing for another battle over President Bush's judicial picks this year. While Democrats have expressed opposition to Kavanaugh's nomination, it is unlikely they would launch a filibuster against the nominee. Conservative groups are pleading with GOP leaders to schedule votes on other pending nominees. "We are eager to get Kavanaugh confirmed so that Dr. Frist can get to work on the other five circuit judges ready for an up-or-down vote," Manuel Miranda, executive director of the Third Branch Conference, said today. "The emphasis on Kavanaugh has been a huge distraction, that leadership staff thought would appease the conservative base. It did not."

Once again, the thing that irks me about this is that Frist did not force a decision on this nomination or that of Terrence Boyle before the Rhode Island primary. By pushing these votes until after that primary, he allows Lincoln Chafee to cast a vote without having to worry about the base Republican vote in Rhode Island. I guarantee that Chafee will be part of an effort to secure another deal in the style of the Gang of 14, which will earn him praise from the liberal media, and frustrate the effort to guarantee a vote for nominees supported by a majority of the Senate.

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