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Friday, July 22, 2005

BULLIES BE BAD: Dick Durbin is just plain tickled to learn that right-wing judicial tool John Roberts "hates bullies and he believes that the rule of law gives even the powerless their day in court and their chance." As opposed to Roberts really liking bullies and arresting powerless people without cause and tossing them into dungeons under they can be rendered into pet food. (All kidding aside, I had no idea that we allowed "powerless" people to have access to our system of justice. When did this start happening? Next thing, we'll be letting women vote. Say what? They do? Susan B. Who?) At first hearing, Durbin's comment strikes the casual listener as the utterance of a simpleton. Now of all the criticisms one might lodge against Sen. Durbin, "stupid" isn't at the top of most lists. But here's a guy — number two Democrat in the Senate, Georgetown University School of Law — who appears more than a little surprised that Roberts subscribes to the core premise of our legal system: equal justice for all, and yes that includes "the bullied." Yes, Senator. Even the powerless generally qualify for public defenders. Especially the powerless — that's kind of the whole point. Think maybe you might be able to come to rehearsals now and then?
"I want to go into this hearing with an open mind," Durbin, told reporters. "I want to give him the chance" to answer questions on a variety of topics. Durbin said they discussed a number of topics during the 40-minute meeting, aimed largely at getting an overall measure of the nominee. "It was a positive measure," Durbin said.
Maybe it's not a question of intelligence. Perhaps Durbin actually believed the left's rhetoric that any Bush nominee could only be a throwback to the pre-Magna Carta era. Hence, he's glad to find Roberts more evolved than expected. Or, maybe Durbin's simply realized there's no real way to beat Roberts, so Durbin has decided to keep his powder dry for another battle. In which case, why not act pleased to meet the guy, possibly hoping some of Robert's charisma might rub off as they stand together for photo ops. Then again, maybe my opening assumption nailed it. It's just possible that Dick Durbin is as much of a dolt as he sounds. As a Zen master once said: First response, best response.