Monday, June 01, 2009

Republicans Soft-pedal Sotomayor Comments Without Criticizing Racist Remarks

A classic way to politically attack an opponent is to be, yourself, a quiet calm force for reason and truth, while at the same time withholding commentary on the remarks of more poorly behaving unprincipled individuals. Individuals who have no scruples about applying wildly untrue and inappropriate vitriol to the opponent in question.

And as this AP story illustrates, this line of attack appears to be shaping up as the main stratagem of the GOP.

From AP:

“Leading GOP senators on Sunday passed up the chance to stifle racially charged criticism of Sonia Sotomayor by fellow Republicans as the party out of power in Washington struggled to develop a unified political strategy to oppose the first Hispanic nominated to the Supreme Court.”

“Sotomayor, an appeals court judge, already faces scrutiny from conservatives over a 2001 remark that her experiences as a Latina would lead her to better decisions than a white man. Talk-show host Rush Limbaugh has called her a "racist" while former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, saying a "Latina woman racist" is unsuitable for the court, has called for withdrawing the nomination.”

“The Senate's top Republicans didn't disavow those assessments, although they urged different language to oppose President Barack Obama's first nominee to the high court.

And if you look at the individual statements of Republicans who have been talking up these points, you have to agree.

All except for John Cornyn, who, as described here, criticized the tone being set by Limbaugh and Gingrich.

I just don't think it's appropriate. I certainly don't endorse it. I think it's wrong.”

So maybe not all of them are eschewing total honesty, and are risking the Wrath of Rush in criticizing him. Or maybe Cornyn didn’t get the memo.

I look at this stratagem like I look at Republicans who defend waterboarding by pointing out that doing it saved hundreds if not hundreds of thousands of lives.

That waterboarding is torture they do seem to be coming around in accepting. They seem to have acquired voices of reason. Only they nullify the whole reasonableness thing by failing to condemn those who ordered waterboarding as criminals because they were protecting our country.

Speaking with voices of reason and rationality on the Sotomayor nomination without condemning others who revel in calling a middle aged Latina a racist is two-faced.

Hypocrisy on a high order.

Sheer duplicity.

Textbook definitions of the party that continues to dig the hole that they are standing in deeper and deeper.

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