Lindsey Graham – Hypocrite?

Under the leadership of Tom Daschle, and now Harry Reid, Democrats in the Senate have established a record of obstruction that has stifled debate, not to mention votes, on many matters important to the nation.  For the Republicans, the obstructionism in the Judiciary Committee caused no small amount of aggravation and frustration, as Democrats placed "holds" on judicial nominees that slowed votes to a crawl. This partisan obstruction was so offensive that some Democrats and Republicans agreed to a compromise, known as the "gang of 14", where it was agreed that each side would forbear from filibusters of nominees, as a matter of course, in return for agreeing not to change the Senate rules on filibustering.  A key element of the compromise was the understanding that individual senators, that were party to the agreement, could pull out of the arrangement if they considered the nominee too extreme. Thus, judicial nominees would effectively be voted out of the Judiciary Committee and sent to the Senate floor for an up or down vote……which is all most Republicans wanted.

Powerline reports that the nomination of Jim Haynes to the 4th Circuit has been effectively killed by Sen. Graham, through the use of the now infamous, secret "hold".  They link to a story in The State that has the evidence.

Let’s see.  Graham tours the Sunday Morning shows touting the gang of 14, making again and again the point that judicial nominees deserve an "up or down" vote on the floor of the Senate. He and his fellow gang members, in their effort to preserve the sacred "Rules" of the Senate (though much changed over the years by the party in control of the Senate, particularly by the Democrats under the leadership of Robert Byrd), essentially craft a new set of rules, giving themselves control of the Judiciary Committee.  After saving the Senate, less than one year later, one of the "saviors" is killing nominees through the use of holds.  Hypocritical, underhanded, or drunk with power?


2 thoughts on “Lindsey Graham – Hypocrite?

  1. Judy

    Lindsey Graham us not a hypocrite. All the criticism he is recieving for killing the Haynes nomination is unfair. A committee hold is not a filibuster it is a tool that any committee member may use to prevent any nominee that presents a significant concerns of problems for whatever reason. The GOP effectively used this tactic on Clinton Nominees.

    People like Shawn Rushton of the Committee for Justice suggested that the Democrats file a discharge petition in order to free the nominees; if they thought they had a majority. Why is the discharge petition not an option for the Republicans who clearly have a majority? All the critics of Graham would be cheering a block of a nominee that was percieved as too liberal. It is groups like the Committee for Justice that are the hypocrites not Lindsey Graham.

  2. Agricola

    Judy: Thanks for the comment. I’ll try to clarify my thoughts. Graham and the Gang put forth the position that any nominee of the President should get an up or down vote in Committee and then on the Senate floor. The outlet for this position was that any memeber could filibuster if the nominee was considered “too extreme”. My understanding, via various news reports, is that Graham has a bone to pick with Haynes because of the positions he took in regard to treatment of prisoners. So, if he has a problem with any nominee, he has two options: vote no, or filibuster. He chose neither, preferring to return to secret holds without announcing the fact. In my opinion, that flies in the face of what he and the gang worked so hard to achieve last summer.


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