If you’re wondering why we aren’t seeing more rabid opposition to Alito from our Democratic senators, the polls will help explain it.

The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Jan. 4-8 among 1,503 adults, finds that the public paid scant attention to the nomination of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court in the days leading up to Senate confirmation hearings on Alito. Just 14% followed reports on the nomination very closely; by comparison, more than triple that number (47%) tracked the recent news of the deaths of 12 miners in West Virginia very closely. On balance, more Americans support Alito’s confirmation than oppose it (by 33% to 19%), though nearly half (48%) decline to offer an opinion.

To be fair, the numbers looked similar prior to the Bork hearings. But Joe Biden was the chair of that committee, not the ranking member. As chairman, he was able to highlight Bork’s extremism much more effectively than Leahy is able to hightlight Alito’s.

Making matters worse is the high level of apathy of the general public, and the fact that the pro-life crowd appears more motivated and attuned to the hearings than the pro-choice group.

We’ve been doing our part, writing letters, signing petitions, etc. But, the other side is active too.

And Lindsay Graham made Mrs. Alito cry by asking her husband “”Are you a closet bigot?”

Here is the New York Times take on it:

Eight hours and several intense grillings after the start of Wednesday’s hearings, Judge Alito’s wife Martha-Ann broke into tears and left the room.

Judge Alito had undergone particularly sharp questioning by Democratic Senator Charles E. Schumer of New York and Rusell D. Feingold of Wisconsin on such subjects as abortion and Judge Alito’s participation in a conservative Princeton alumni group. Judge Alito seemed to grow increasingly exasperated by the suggestion that he had shared the group’s opposition to admitting more women and minorities at the school, and his sense of frustration was clear in his voice.

When it was time for Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, to question Judge Alito, he offered a query that was meant to help the judge respond to some of the criticisms. “Are you a closet bigot?” Mr. Graham asked, before answering his own question in the negative. As he apologized to Judge Alito and his family for the ordeal of committee questioning, Mrs. Alito left the room weeping.

The Committee for Justice, a conservative group supporting confirmation, quickly circulated a reports of the episode with this note: “When will the media shame these people for their behavior?”

Mrs. Alito returned to the hearing room after a short absense and sat patiently behind her husband the hearings gaveled to a close just before 7 p.m

The crying gambit appears to have worked, as most media outlets are blaming the Democrats for upsetting Mrs. Alito. I have mixed feelings about it. Obviously, Graham’s comment was rhetorical, and he was only pointing out the subtext of the Dems questioning about the Concerned Alumni of Princeton. On the other hand, Alito’s explanation for his membership in that group is disingenuous.

In the end, we lose when the wife storms out in tears.

0 0 votes
Article Rating