Centrists Republicans and Democrats reached a compromise Monday night to avoid a showdown on President Bush's stalled judicial nominees and the Senate's own filibuster rules, officials from both parties said.
These officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the agreement would clear the way for yes-or-no votes on some of Bush's nominees, but make no guarantee.
Under the agreement, Democrats would pledge not to filibuster any of Bush's future appeals court or Supreme Court nominees except in "extraordinary circumstances."
For their part, Republicans agreed not to support an attempt to strip Democrats of their right to block votes.
Under the agreement, Texas Supreme Court Justice Priscilla Owen, nominated to a seat on the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans, would advance to a final confirmation vote.
The Filibuster lives.
The Republicans got damned near nothing. There will be a vote on 3 judges. And the Democrats can filibuster under "extraordinary circumstances." Which phrase is completely undefined, and can EASILY mean "if Bush nominates an extremist."
Frist looks ball-less.
Bush is quacking.
Reid stood his ground, and Frist caved.
And when they finally bring Priscilla Owens up for a vote, every single Republican should get inundated with angry letters and phone calls. Owens will be asked directly if she feels at all responsible for causing the death of a kid by dragging her legislative feet when one of her corporate buddies was ALREADY found liable for his medical bills.
And watch Bush's face when the Republicans vote against her, too.
Bush's approval rating is down into impeachable territory, and the only thing saving his lying ass is the fact that his own party controls the House.
But you KNOW that they aren't happy about being associated with him OR with Frist OR with Delay at this point.
They are ALL toxic.
And the moderate Republicans CAN be persuaded to break ranks for their own political survival.