Bork thinks Kagan Should Be Borked

bork[bawrk] –verb (used with object)

to attack (a candidate or public figure) systematically, esp. in the media. Origin: 1988, Americanism ; after Judge Robert H. Bork,  whose appointment to the Supreme Court was blocked in 1987 after an extensive media campaign by his opponents

Well I guess it’s only fair.  (via Ann Althouse)  That being said, I think Kagan is weak and inexperienced enough that she will be the best thing possible for conservatives and lovers of the Constitution in an Obama administration.  He says that he wants a consensus builder on the court; there is no indication at all that Kagan is that person.  She’s been nice to conservatives in the past (well, not that nice); I expect that she won’t be a stubborn voice that changes minds in the future.  She’s no liberal Scalia, and it’s a fantasy to think otherwise.  But she’s clearly smart and capable, and I expect her to do well on the issues that don’t involve political or constitutional questions.  So, she gets confirmed = we win. 

Kagan Confirm

That said, I’d like for them to make it a little rough on her.  I’d like to see the confirmation hearings turn into a referendum on the Constitution.  And a referendum on its limits.  In particular, I’d like for her to strongly, unequivocally define what she believes to be the limits of the Commerce Clause.  Because there is simply no good answer that shows that there are limits, yet supports a liberal agenda.  We need that on record.  And then, in 2012, we need to be sure to remind people that, in an Obama world, the Constitution sets no limits, and is meaningless.

Update: Kagan says that the Bork hearings were “great,” “educational” and “the best thing that ever happened to Constitutional Democracy.”  (via Instapundit)  Hope she still believes that.

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See, why do people have to put these things into my head

I know that this will never happen, but now, I want it to.  A couple of Above the Law writers are advocating Clarence Thomas for president. 

The Republican Party is in disarray, with no clear message — as shown in last week’s primaries — and with no obvious candidate to challenge President Obama in 2012. Thomas could be the GOP’s new standard-bearer. He has enviable name recognition, both as a long-serving justice and as the author of the bestselling 2007 autobiography “My Grandfather’s Son.” And he has already survived the nasty political attacks that marked his 1991 confirmation hearings.

A Thomas candidacy would bring racial diversity and a moving personal story to the Republican ticket. Thomas was born into poverty in Pin Point, Ga. He didn’t have indoor plumbing until he moved to Savannah to live with his grandparents at age 7.

“[My grandfather] told us that if we learned how to work, we would be able to live as well as he and Aunt Tina did when we grew up,” Thomas wrote in his memoir. “. . . Our first task was to get a good education, so that we could hold down a ‘coat-and-tie-job,’ and he wouldn’t listen to any excuses for failure.” Through hard work and a dedication to education, including degrees from Holy Cross College and Yale Law School, Thomas became a distinguished lawyer and public servant.

Thomas is well suited for political office. On the nation’s highest court, he has had to reflect and rule on the country’s most divisive issues. He also has political experience predating the court. He worked as an assistant attorney general in Missouri and then for the Reagan administration in the Department of Education and as head of the EEOC.

I’d be terrible if he risked it and lost (although, as Glenn Reynolds points out– who says he has to step down to run?)- we just couldn’t allow Obama to appoint his replacement.  And he would lose- as I’ve said before, as a minority who isn’t liberal, he represents something that the liberals know they must destroy.   But, oh! the justices that a president Thomas would appoint. 

Ilya Somin doesn’t think it’s a good idea for mostly the same reasons I don’t. (No real discussion of how he would actually be as president, though).

“Am I crazy, or is an overweight man with a thick New Jersey accent the most effective communicator of commonsense conservative principles in America today?”

I’m not the only one digging Chris Christie.

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The quote above comes from an email to Instapundit here, who points out that the audience is hanging on to his every word.

When is a pledge not a pledge?

When Obama says it on the campaign trail, apparently

This morning at a Manhattan breakfast sponsored by Thomson Reuters, White House Budget Director Peter Orszag threw that pledge out the window. Instead, he described Obama’s “read my lips, no new taxes” pledge as a “stance” and a “preference” that is subject to study by the president’s newly formed bipartisan Commission on Fiscal Responsibility.

“The president has been very clear about what he prefers,” Orszag said under questioning from Thomson Reuters’ Chrystia Freeland. “That was his stance during the campaign, and he still believes that’s the right course forward. But he has also been very clear that we shall let the commission go do its work.”

Freeland followed up, asking if that means the White House might be open to the idea. “Perhaps here’s some give there?”

“I don’t feel like I’m in a position to say that there will be any give there,” Orszag parried. “But the president has been very clear that the commission should go explore whatever options they all deem to be appropriate.”

Later on during the breakfast, Orszag resisted my attempts to pin him down when I asked if the White House could live with a tax increase on the middle class.

“No, I didn’t say that,” he answered. “What I did say is look, the typical thing that’s going to happen, and it’s already been happening, is everyone is going to come along with this idea—the value added tax, this thing under $250,000, Social Security, Medicare changes, what have you—and you’re looking for us to say no, yes, no, yes, no, yes—which will mean that the commission has absolutely nothing to talk about and nothing to do. The president has been very clear that we’re not going to play that game.”

Hmm, I could have sworn  . . . Nah, he must have said “preference” back in 2008.  That pledge business just sounds like something Glenn Beck would have told us.  And yet,

Q: Can you make an absolute, read-my-lips pledge that there will be no tax increases of any kind for anyone earning under $200,000 a year?

CLINTON: I will let the taxes on people making more than $250,000 a year go back to the rates that they were paying in the 1990s.

Q: Senator Obama, would you take the same pledge? No tax increases on people under $250,000?

OBAMA: I not only have pledged not to raise their taxes, I’ve been the first candidate in this race to specifically say I would cut their taxes. We are going to offset the payroll tax, the most regressive of our taxes, so that families who are middle-income individuals making $75,000 a year or less, that they would get a tax break so that families would see up to $1,000 worth of relief.

Q: You both have now just taken this pledge on people under $250,000 and $200,000.

OBAMA: Well, it depends on how you calculate it. But it would be between $200,000 and $250,000.

So, here’s my direction for 2012.  Every promise that candidate Obama makes, and you know that he’s going to make a lot of them, needs to be followed immediately by strong questioning as to whether this pledge is actually a pledge, or whether it is a  preference that is kind of  like a pledge, but at the same time completely different.

I’m on board

Hot Air posts a must-see video of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie responding to a reporter who accused him of having a “confrontational tone.” (via Instapundit)

Gov Christie calls S-L columnist thin-skinned for inquiring about his ‘confrontational tone’
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Dude, I’m starting to think this might be the guy. A solid first term, then reelection in 2014, and suddenly the wide-open 2016 primaries are right around the corner…

So, why should we have to wait until 2016?  I’m on board right now.

Dick Cheney? Really?

Real Clear Politics lists their idea of the “dark horse” candidates for the 2012 GOP nomination. 

Too bad it almost certainly won’t happen.”

Is Bob Corker considering a presidential run?

KnoxNews says he’s not ruling it out. 

Corker’s the former mayor and major developer of my current hometown (Chattanooga, TN), and it is a fabulous place to live.  Obviously, it depends on what you like, but I think, for the majority of America, there could not be anything better.  My understanding is that he played a large role in making it what it is today. 

I’ve been pretty impressed with Senator Corker since he went to the Senate, too.  He really made a name for himself during the TARP and stimulous debates, a lot more so than most freshman senators would.  Plus, he’s got some good business sense, something all too needed right now.  I don’t know if it might be too soon (he’s only been on the national stage since 2006), but he’s one to watch.