On Reid on Roberts

This post at the Blue Mass Group, which criticizes Harry Reid's announced "No" vote on John Roberts and proposing a counter strategy of voting yes while explaining why John Roberts is acceptable in the terms of a warning for what Bush can't do for the next courl slot is really off base. It fails to explain what benefits will come to the Democrats by providing such an explanation, and it's hard to figure out what the answer could be. The chances of Bush listening are slim to none, with slim having just left town. It's not clear how stating why Roberts is acceptable will lead to Democratic electoral victories It would probably lead to a couple of articles cheering the Democrats for overcoming their partisan instincts, but such articles will be wrong, and will fade.

Here's the thing: it's oft repeated that with Republican political victories, it must be accepted that Republican judges will be appointed. Practically, that's true, the Democrats can't stop it. But there's a perfectly good reason to not vote for them: liberal jurisprudential theories (Ronald Dworkin, Ely, Sunstein, or whomever else one might follow) are correct (Democratic Senators presumably believe), and conservative jurisprudential theories are wrong. Also, it reinforces the anti-democratic precedent that it's fine to vote for Judges whom you know little to nothing about it.

I therefore sign on to the strategy that's making the rounds, namely that all the Democrats should abstain. This can highlight the process problems, allow Democrats to note that they believe there is an objectively correct way to practice the art of judging and that Roberts is likely to disagree with what they see as objectively correct, while noting that no better candidate is likely to come from Bush and he therefore doesn't require a "No" vote.