The Campaign Spot

She May Display a Poker Face at Her Confirmation Hearings

From the Monday edition of the Morning Jolt:

Newt Foresees a Bad Romance With Lady Kaga-n

Saturday night I had a preview of Newt Gingrich’s chin music for Elena Kagan. As I’ve noted a few times on the blog, the National Rifle Association scored the confirmation vote for Sonia Sotomayor, the first time they had ever scored a vote on a Supreme Court nominee. That meant that a lot of Senate Democrats who usually have perfect or near-perfect voting records on the gun issue – Harry Reid of Nevada, for one – suddenly have a big black mark. Scoring Kagan and Sotomayor means two black marks for just about every Senate Democrat, and that might be the difference between an endorsement of a Democratic incumbent or an endorsement for a GOP challenger (or the organization not endorsing in a race).

With Mike Pence and Newt Gingrich ripping Kagan to wild applause at the NRA Convention, the organization may have been backed into a corner.

On one of the Sunday shows, Newt continued to argue that it’s a no-brainer: “You don’t need a lot of hearings. The very fact that she led the effort which was repudiated unanimously by the Supreme Court to block the American military from Harvard Law school — we’re in two wars, and I see no reason why you would appoint an anti-military Supreme Court justice or why the Senate would confirm an anti-military Supreme Court justice.”

Meanwhile, on another channel, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell argued that her initial argument in the Citizens United case suggests she’s as iffy on the First Amendment as the NRA members suspect she is on the Second Amendment: “Solicitor Kagan’s office, in the initial hearing, argued that it’d be okay to ban books,” the Kentucky Republican said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday. “And then when there was a re-hearing, Solicitor Kagan herself, in her first Supreme Court argument, suggested that it might be okay to ban pamphlets. I think that’s very troubling.”

ON yet another Sunday show, Ann Althouse is left yelling at her television as Chuck Schumer and David Gregory completely and totally botch the description of what the Citizens United case decided: “If there’s one thing you should know about Citizens United v. FEC, it’s that it’s not about corporate contributions to political candidates. It’s about corporations engaging in their own political speech (and spending money in the process) . . .  I am shocked at you and Gregory deliberately misleading viewers. Deliberately or ignorantly. I’m guessing deliberately. At least for Schumer. Gregory might be a dunce. I don’t know.”

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