GOP Sen. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island also announced that he would vote against Alito's confirmation. Chafee, a self-described "pro-choice, pro-environment, pro-Bill of Rights Republican," is the only member of the Republican Party so far to announce that he will vote against the conservative judge.
This doesn't actually affect Alito's passage: It doesn't say that Chaffee will vote with the Dems on the filibuster, just that he will vote against confirmation, which will succeed without him. But it DOES allow the Democrats to claim "bipartisan" opposition, and gives right-wing Dems cover in opposing Alito. It also shows that it is the REPUBLICANS who have a political price to pay for this vote, not the Democrats.
I'm surpised, but gratified: it looks like there will be an attempt at a filibuster. Who'da thunk? I don't expect it to succeed - at least not for very long - but there will be an attempt. And, of all people, it looks like John Kerry is leading the charge.