The Corner

Sorry, Mickey

Kaus is trying to spin away CBS’s mistake on Ken Starr. He says that CBS was right to say that Starr is against getting rid of the judicial filibuster–and that Rush Limbaugh is wrong to deny it.

But he misses what CBS’s actual error was. CBS certainly implied that Starr had said that a rules change would be a “radical, radical departure from our history and our traditions, and it amounts to an assault on the judicial branch of government”–which is why every news write-up of the CBS interview presented the quote that way, starting with the Associated Press. Starr says he didn’t say that, it’s not his actual view, and CBS’s editing nearly reversed his actual meaning (since it was the Democratic filibusters of judges on philosophical grounds that he was describing as a radical assault). You can oppose a rules change without thinking it’s “an assault on the judicial branch of government.” CBS got this wrong, even if Limbaugh made an error of his own.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.


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