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From an Arlen Specter presser today:

QUESTION: If the president does announce a nominee today, would he have done so without consulting the Senate? Would that be a disappointment to you?

SPECTER: No, it would not be a disappointment to me because it’s the president’s call. And I thought about this long and hard, about submitting names to the president, and it seemed to me the wiser course at this particular time was not to do so. I’m well aware of the advice function, as well as the advice and consent function. But I wasn’t asked. Don’t ask, don’t tell. And there’s also greater latitude by senators who have not given advice. And that’s something which is in my mind as well. There are several, though. You could give advice and then not consent even after you’ve given advice. But it wouldn’t be quite so easy. So the independence and separation of power, I think, in this particular situation, after having thought about it long and hard, is best preserved by not giving advice and performing the consent function.



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