From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
The Young Turks are filibustering for a filibuster of Alito

January 26, 2006 10:14 PM

The always awesome Young Turks are gonna stay live on the air until the Democrats mount a filibuster of Supreme Court nominee Alito. John Kerry (bless him) stepped up this morning, and now it's up to five senators. 36 to go.

Watch them live right now with Windows Media player. Phone call in @ 323-866-8201.

UPDATE, Friday night: They're still going strong. 10 senators are now on the record, but someone called Harry Reid's office, and they claim to have 30-something senators supporting a filibuster so far.

More from the archive in Lawsuits, Politics.

The Young Turks are filibustering for a filibuster of Alito (01.26.2006)

Next Entry: Cloture vote right now (01.30.2006)
Previous Entry: Oh. Now I get it. (01.22.2006)

Read the 31 comments.


THANK YOU for the post Jim!!!! Your endless support means so much.

We are still going and won't stop till its over! Look forward to great guest hosts this weekend -- including Thom Hartman.


The Young Turks

Sat Jan 28 2006 1:51 AM


Good. I'm really looking forward to the call for a point of order on filibustering nominees. We need to put a stop to this nonsense once and for all.

Sat Jan 28 2006 11:25 AM


I have confidence in Russ Feingold. I'm hoping Herb Kohl will join the fray as well. Wisconsin has a proud progressive tradition despite Joe McCarthy and current fascist par excellence, James Sensenbrenner in the House.

I'm wondering how Alito rationalizes his Unitary Executive theory with a "strict constructionist view".

Sat Jan 28 2006 4:07 PM

Tom from Madison:

The last post is mine.

Sat Jan 28 2006 4:08 PM

Right Wing Robby:

You Dream.

Sun Jan 29 2006 3:23 PM


"Young progressive or insurgent" – figures, exactly the tactics of the left.

You have nothing on this guy (again), he was the smartest guy in the room (again), and now because you’re sore losers you resort to this (actually I cant believe that Sen. Bird is going to vote for Alito). When Ginsburg went up for confirmation she was not put thru the same inquisition Alito & Roberts went thru, we are EXTREMELY fortunate that some one of Alito’s intelligence and integrity is willing to put himself and his family thru this type of abuse.

Mon Jan 30 2006 8:26 AM

Tom from Madison:

Abuse is a stong word. What are you referring to? What about Harriet Myers -- too bad she was so "abused"!

I'd like to know why Alito was a member of the Concerned Alumni of Princeton. Seems he had a problem with inclusion of females and minorities at Princeton. it makes me wonder what kind of similar ideas he might still hold.

I'd also like to hear more about his crackpot unitary executive theory. Aren't conservatives the ones reminding us that we don't need judges "legislating from the bench"?

In case you hadn't noticed, being "the smartest guy" doesn't have anything to do with the selection process. It's about who is likely to show the blindest loyalty. Alito certainly fits that bill.

Mon Jan 30 2006 12:22 PM


"...I'd like to know why Alito was a member of the Concerned Alumni of Princeton..."
A student organization he joined three decades ago is that much of a concern for you?
That's the best the left can do?

Mon Jan 30 2006 2:56 PM

Tom from Madison:

The best the left can do? -- No.
Cause for concern? -- You bet.

This was a group of young racists hoping to keep Princeton a bastion of white, male priviledge. I'd like to know if Mr Alito still holds these beliefs. Anyone favoring equal justice for all should have the same concerns.

Concerning his record, Alito has a long history of ruling in the minority. He's an enemy of civil rights. Generally he favors expansive powers for the executive branch, law enforcement, and corporations.

It's amazing how short-sighted today's republicans have gotten. There is a willingness to grant the Bush administration powers that they would never have granted the Clinton Administration.

If you're worried about big brother violating your right to privacy, you don't want Alito sitting on the Supreme Court. If you don't want to live in a police state, you don't want Alito on the Court.

Alito will likely use his "intellect" to tilt the balance of power in favor of the Executive. If you expect to have a Republican King and a subservient Congress, he's your guy. If you want the kind of government the Constitution lays out, we can do a LOT BETTER!

Tue Jan 31 2006 9:35 AM



What about Kennedy’s membership in a similar group? What about the fact that he grilled Alito to the point that Alito’s wife broke down is that what the Senate has come to? Not weather the person is qualified (which he is) but if you don’t like him destroy him personally (no to mention Kennedy mutilating his name as he did Sen. Obama’s)

I know this isn’t the place for it but I’m saying something about the Democrat response to the President. I liked it!!! I like the way it was delivered, I thought the governor of Virginia spoke very well!!! It made me think about quite a few things.

I tell you this: if the Democrats get rid of the psychos in their party like: Dean, Kerry, Pelosi, Durbin, Kennedy, Clinton and others that party will be a force to be reckoned with!

Tue Jan 31 2006 11:03 PM



I tell you this: if the Democrats get rid of the psychos in their party like: Dean, Kerry, Pelosi, Durbin, Kennedy, Clinton and others and include more people like the Governor of Virginia your party will be a force to be reckoned with!

Wed Feb 1 2006 7:22 AM



Civics lesson 101: Supreme court justices get a lifetime appointment and are not accountable to any electorate.

Kennedy is accountable to his own electorate every 6 years.

Alito just got a lifetime appointment with very little scrutiny. If there are flaws in the system it is that too little scrutiny has been given to Bush's nominees--not too much. The rubber-stamp Republicans are to blame for this!

Having too much power in the executive branch may seem like a great thing today. Perhaps when President Barack Obama or Russ Feingold takes office, you will have a different take. I'm still waiting to hear about Alito's Unitary Executive theory from those on the right. Are you all alright with that or what?

Thu Feb 2 2006 1:46 PM


“Perhaps when President Barack Obama or Russ Feingold takes office, you will have a different take.” – AND so will you! He (Alito) faced just as much if not more (scrutiny) then any other judge on the Supreme Court. If you believe he got off easy you have no one to blame but those on the committee who share your point of view.

Or perhaps you would like the court the way it was with it stripping away private property rites from those that just happen to live somewhere where because of location Location LOCATION, some local government official can use the loophole of a “BIGGER TAX BASE” to displace them for (not even for a road, a school or a bridge) a shopping mall a more obvious case of legislation from the bench isn’t needed.

I for one am grateful that that status quo no longer stands!

(and yes the actions of that local govt official are wrong and immoral)

Thu Feb 2 2006 2:40 PM

Sponge Bob:

Young Turks? You mean old bloated relics like Kennedy are "youg turks" to the democrat party? Between the Roe effect and the AARP the party is headed for the trash heap of history.

Kennedy is a CURRENT MEMBER The Owl Club, a social club for Harvard alumni that bans women from membership. He joined before being expelled for cheating and continued to pay annual dues every since.

When asked if he is still a member, Kennedy said gave this priceless answer, “I’m not a member; I continue to pay about $100.”

Terry Eastland, now publisher of The Weekly Standard and in the 1970's an editor of the CAP magazine, has written a very helpful article, titled "Inside 'Concerned Alumni of Princeton," not only explaining that "Samuel Alito had virtually nothing to do with the notorious CAP," but also showing that he and other admirable people did and CAP's "notoriety" is undeserved.

Mr. Eastland's article is accessible at

Fri Feb 3 2006 4:29 PM


Well at least they got the "insurgent" part right!

Sat Feb 4 2006 7:14 AM

Tom from Madison:

The Reich-wingers on this site don't seem concerned that the Executive Branch has uprecedented authority and has admitted to violating the FISA law with domestic spying. I've heard no defense of the unitary executive theory. Apparently the talking point is to IGNORE THIS. Come on you strict constructionists! It's not in the constitution, yet Alito espouses it. Why didn't that disqualify him?

What about the kingly powers now being exercised by the President? Any problems there?

We just approved a justice who favors even greater executive authority. Hasn't anyone learned from the Nixon experience? Bush has repeatedly violated FISA--BY HIS OWN ADMISSION. He should be impeached for that.

Why won't republicans talk about the obvious corruption of those making policy and stealing from the treasury? Property right concerns pale in comapison to the graft and corruption being practiced every single day by Bush and his corrupt operatives.

Sat Feb 4 2006 10:49 PM


"Tom from Madison: NEW

The Reich-wingers"

Cute, Bush is Hitler but we are being mean when we question your patriotism.

So Tommy, do you think Clinton should go to prison for violating the same law, only his "tapping" involved phone calls that where entirely within the borders of the US?

Mon Feb 6 2006 10:43 AM



Under article II of the Constitution, including his capacity as Commander and Chief, the President has the responsibility to protect the nation from further attacks, and the Constitution gives him ALL NECESSARY AUTHORITY to fulfill that duty, the President is not only authorized but bound to resist by force….without waiting for special legislative authority. The President has INDEPENDENT authority to repel aggressive acts by third parties without specific congressional authorization, and courts may not review the level of force selected. The Congress recognized this constitutional authority in the preamble to the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) 18 SEP 2001. The President has authority under the Constitution to take action to deter and prevent acts of international terrorism against the United States. In the War Powers Resolution (the Constitutional powers of the President as Commander and Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into Hostilities extend to a national emergency created by an attack upon the U.S., it’s territories/possessions, or its armed forces).

This Constitutional authority includes warrant less foreign intelligence surveillance w/in the U. S, as all federal appellate courts, including at least four circuits to have addressed this issue have concluded [See, e.g., In re Sealed Case, 310 F.3d 717, 742 (FISA Ct. of Review 2002)], [See United States V. United States District Court, 407 U.S. 297, 308 (1972)]

Please Impeach him, I want to see Bush smoke you guys like a cheap (Clinton) cigar.

Mon Feb 6 2006 4:09 PM

Tom from Madison:


Bush needs to do a lot more than claim he knows what's best. Right now that's all he's done. In your world a President need only say we're all in danger. That's not the United States of America--It's the neighborhood of MAKE BELIEVE!

Let's recall how we got here. Bush's incompetence in ignoring his own PDB in 2001 left America vulnerable to attack from Bin Laden-backed Saudi Hijackers.

Due to Bush's MONUMENTAL SCREW-UP, we were hit--on his watch, due to his negligence. In response he starts an undeclared "War On Terror". In service of this war he wants Americans to give up OUR CIVIL RIGHTS! That''s exactly what OSAMA WANTS TOO!

Bush even lies about FISA spying in April of 2004 while campaigning and after he has been doing it for years. He's only defending it now because he got caught.

Anyone who trusts this man's judgment is seriously impaired himself. There's no reason why this President can't obey the law. The biggest danger is Presidential lawlessness. The terror threat pales in comparison.

Impeachment is the Constitutional Remedy. It's time to bring it on!

Mon Feb 6 2006 4:43 PM

Tom from Madison:

Mr Anonymous,

in direct response to your question concerning Clinton. Yes, by all means charge him if he violated FISA. If not, shut up and move on.

It's time to put an end to the idea that we need to inflate Presidential authority to Nixonian levels. The founders were wise in giving the Congress the authority to declare war.

We don't have a king, emporer, or unitary executive. That's a very good thing. Anybody who claims we need to give that power to any president isn't a patriot and isn't talking about an American Constiutional Republic.

Bottom line: we don't need to cower in fear of Al Qaeda to the point where we give away our rights to a would-be tin-horn dictator. Giving away the bill of rights is per se "UNPATRIOTIC".

Tue Feb 7 2006 7:20 AM



“It's not in the constitution,” – from your post 04 FEB 2006 to which I replied on my post dated 06 FEB 2006. You deliberately IGNORED the fact that it WAS in the Constitution and replied with your post also dated 06 FEB 06 in which you said “Let's recall how we got here.” To quote a phrase from the Fantastic Four movie “YEAH LETS!”

-12 years of laying the security of the United States on the Alter of the UN (the most anti American, anti Israeli organization in the world) thru non enforcement of sanctions and back door deals with Iraq from our “friends” the: Russians, Germans, and French (oil for food).
-EIGHT YEARS of NEGLECT to NATIONAL SECURITY (starting in 1993) by the previous administration where issues like:
-Somalia where then President Clinton FAILED to permit the forces there at that time to function to the best of their ability or even to call for air strikes to save our military members from being massacred and their bodies dragged thru the streets like so much garbage.
-Kosovo where Mr. Clinton said that troops would be back home in a year (he just didn’t say what particular year) Are we still there?!?
-And multiple terrorist attacks on American Military (Kobar Towers/ USS Cole) and civilian people (African Embassies) around the world went unanswered which emboldened terrorists around the world thinking America was “soft” and would do nothing to protect our people and interests in other parts of the world.
-Having the opportunity to take OBL into custody (being given to us by a foreign country) and Mr. Clinton in essence saying “thanks but no thanks” (if this didn’t happen we wouldn’t be debating this).
-Former President Clinton launching a missile strike into Iraq at an aspirin factory just to draw attention from Monicagate (Monica Missiles)
-A former member of the Clinton administration crafting a law that actually set up a wall between law enforcement and federal law enforcement agencies and those agencies NOT being able to share information (not being ALLOWED to connect the dots) which inevitably doomed the events of 11SEP 2001 into happening.

-After 9/11, the Democrats voting to give the President what he needs to go after these monsters and then suddenly say oh no not that we didn’t mean that.
-Giving NON American enemy combatants rites under the constitution (that’s fine for Padilla and Lynde BUT not the rest)
-Accusing the President of lying (when he didn’t), calling him a criminal (when he isn’t).
-Accusing the President of going to war for political reasons (thank you [hic] Ted Kennedy)
-Creating torture scandals in a prison in Iraq (pictures of naked men or having panties on their heads), yeah that’s hard core.
-Creating scandals about the Presidents military service.
-Durbin calling the American Military Nazis (this is how “TOLERANT and INCLUSIVE” the left is)
-Attacking the President because he exercised his Constitutional powers to protect this country, would the left have attacked Lincoln for suspending Habeas Corpus? How about Roosevelt for interning approx 150000 Americans of Japanese decent (WWII)? Not a peep from the left about the Echelon Program which actually records EVERYTHING (internet traffic, email, phone calls, credit card transactions) since it was put in place by the former Democrat Administration it’s “legal”
-Ted (hic) Kennedy throwing a tantrum after the Alito confirmation – proving that the left used the courts to legislate their agenda into law!
-Threatening to filibuster because you lack the (down) votes to block judicial nominees.

Time after time the left has tried to BLOCK/PREVENT/STOP the President from protecting this country (as is his duty and obligation as it is written in the Constitution) so I now accuse the left of wanting the terrorists of Al-Quada to attack the United States AGAIN – to cause more loss of life, to cause damage to the economy, to look the other way as our way of life is destroyed… all for political reasons… because they’re not in power.

Those who agree with the likes of: Kennedy, Pelosi, Sharpton, Moore, Streisand, Baldwin, Durbin, Murtha, I accuse of deliberately dividing this country and giving aid and comfort to the terrorists.

Giving the enemies hope, killing more soldiers, bombing Iraqi civilians, cutting the heads off of American hostages and those of you who agree with those I’ve named share the responsibility!

OBL in his latest tape talked about the split in the American government and he’s using it to his and his organization’s advantage.

When Arsenio Hall still had his show (back during the 1st Gulf War) he said something that I would forever give him the utmost respect (I’m paraphrasing) “I was against the war until it started” after the war was over he continued to be liberal but while the war was on he was supporting Bush 41 – Too bad the rest of the left didn’t learn by his example.

I'm tired of it, it sickens me but at least I know why America is in this, all I have to do is look into the sky from my backyard and see the towers are no longer there.

To spite what I believe the left deserves I will do what I took an oath to do when called upon to do it defend my country (yeah that includes liberals too).

Tue Feb 7 2006 4:25 PM

Tom from Madison:

Your vitriol and verbosity are unpersuasive. This isn't about celebrity appeal. It isn't about liberal vs conservative. It's about one misguided President lieing to the American people and claiming authority he can NEVER HAVE AS AN AMERICAN PRESIDENT.

It's about telling the truth and not being afraid. Republicans on the hill are starting to get this. If anyone, self-styled patriot or not, gives away the bill of rights, that person is a traitor--period.

NJ, the biggest lie you are telling is in suggesting that any Amercan other than George W Bush failed to protect America on September 11, 2001. There is abundant evidence showing that 9/11 could have been averted by this Administration.

Ever since that date the President has sought to steal the Bill of Rights from everyday people. He and his cronies are profiting from the Iraq war and from dealings with the Saudis who still haven't been held accountable.

Bush's continual incompetence is responsible for the failure to apprehend Osama Bin Laden.


I repeat, it's time to impeach Bush for violating the law. I wish to thank the GOOD Senator from Pennsylvania for speaking the I-word. The tipping point is nigh!

Tue Feb 7 2006 6:38 PM



The only lie I keep telling myself is that people like you could actually be reasoned with!

It's plain to me that you and your ideology have to be beaten, politically, verbally and in the hearts and minds of Americans that know you for what you really, are as shown at the funeral of Dr. King’s wife – is nothing sacred? An F’n funeral???? you people turned it into a political circus all for HATE of one man.

You your self have even denied the Constitution and I ask those who read this who’s the real traitor

You’re correct it isn’t about being conservative or liberal it’s about being American. And you and those like you have a long way to go to get there.

My last post wasn’t to impress it was the truth.

Tue Feb 7 2006 11:33 PM


I know what a dictator is, I've seen what one does and George W Bush isnt one.

Tue Feb 7 2006 11:36 PM

Tom from Madison:

The President is an aspiring dictator. He hasn't reached full-blown dictator status yet thanks to people of principle like Arlen Specter. However. Bush has consistently moved to augment his own power and consistently avoids accountability to anyone.

Then there is the issue of selectively backing dictators in certain countries. His corrupt Saudi connection is a prime example. Consider too his shameful record on human rights. I believe human rights apply universally--all countries all the time.

Bush has DELIBERATELY CREATED HUMAN RIGHTS FREE ZONES WHERE HE CAN BE LEGALLY FREE TO TORTURE AND ENGAGE IN OTHER ABUSES. I say this is evil and has taken America down the wrong path. Most Americans agree. We're not traitors. We're the majority and we're taking back the country.

There are very few consitutional scholars who are backing Bush on FISA. Specter said it very well. "That just defies logic and plain English."

Rather than being beaten, progressives have been proven right. Bush has delivered a future of debt and continuous war. American can and will do better. History will show Bush to have been our worst President. With the help of Republicans of conscience, he'll be impeached and removed.

Wed Feb 8 2006 10:29 AM



Which came first: The Constitution or FISA?

Wed Feb 8 2006 11:16 AM



I thank God you weren’t around when Japan attacked Hawii, if you had your way we’d all be probably speaking in German or Japanese now.

You’re right History will show Bush to be one of our best Presidents (to spite trying to obstruct the President at every turn) along with: Reagan, Kennedy, Roosevelt, Truman, Lincoln and others.

Wed Feb 8 2006 11:32 AM

Tom from Madison:


Bush is both shredding the Constitution AND violating FISA. The Constitution has a mechanism for dealing with lawless Presidents: It's impeachment. As I've said before, we've never needed it before like we need it now.

...Equating today's situation with Pearl Harbor is ridiculous. We are simply not in anywhere near the danger we were then. If we were we'd have a draft and we wouldn't think of having tax cuts. Everybody would be sacrificing for national survival.

Bush has repeated the fear and war mongering ad nauseum. He has yet to hold the Saudis themselves accountable for their actions on 9/11. His incompetence is to blame for Bin Laden remaining at large.

The problem all Bush loyalists face is lack of fear. People just aren't cowering like the neocons would like them to. Devices like the "Terror Level" have proved to be just plain silly. So has domestic spending on things like bullet proof dog vests and chemical attack suits in the heartland.

Yes we live in a dangerous world. A real leader will find ways of dealing with this world while preserving our freedoms. A pathetic, weak leader will suggest we can only be free by surrendering our civil rights.

There's also the grandiose scale of corruption Bush has brought to defense contracting. This guy is impeachable on many fronts. I say lets get to it!

Wed Feb 8 2006 12:26 PM

Dave E.:

I've always been a Bush skeptic, but the second he started talking like a street corner rapturist is the second I started getting very worried about how this "war on terror" was going to be conducted. Evildoers, axis of evil, freedom haters...these are very pointed and deliberate terms designed to appeal to the darkest parts of everyone's psyche. Fear mongering = votes. The most insincere and dirty form of politics. Keep people like NJ scared witless, therefore indoctrinating loyalists that will vote against their own interests and waste energy projecting a particularly vile form of hatred against any American that dares contradict the boy king. These truly are dangerous times we live in, and terrorism isn't the only reason.

And on terrorism, I don't doubt we do face a new and constant threat to our safety -- only a fool would think a reasonable person would deny this -- but it needs to be treated pragmatically, with sound policy. Not bombast, rhetoric, and all guns blazing.

When Bush started getting all fire and brimstone about it, the first thing that jumped into my mind is: "he sounds just like the same religious fundamentalist nuts that we're facing". Then I thought: "this is NO way to run our nation's foreign policy".

Too bad the COTUS doesn't address impeaching an entire administration, because as much as I hate to say it, I'd rather have the boy king than ol' 5 deferment Dick.

And am I the only one that thinks NJ is one wingnut talking point away from becoming the next unibomber? Phew...

Wed Feb 8 2006 2:24 PM


5 deferment Dick has his own list of offenses to answer for. This man did business with the "axis of evil" during the 90s. He set up off-shore Haliburton subsidiaries for just such purposes. He has lied repeatedly about WMDs, Al Qaeda, and secret oil meetings.

The saddest thing about Bush's Presidency is the darkness of his vision. Under King George we can look forward to perpetual war in the name of democracy. During this "long war" we can look forward to giving up civil rights in the name of security, and greater debt for future generations.

Anybody who is so afraid as to believe Bush's fear mongering needs to get over it. The active pursuit of peace is the path we should be pursuing. Bush has us headed in exactly the opposite direction.

Wed Feb 8 2006 6:36 PM

Tom from Madison:

The last post is mine.

Wed Feb 8 2006 6:37 PM

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