If you want to understand just how pitbullish conservatives are feeling right now, consider this: Before Sonia Sotomayor makes her first appearance on Capitol Hill, and long before her first confirmation hearing, conservative activists are already pitching a public fit about the possibility that Republicans won’t filibuster her confirmation on the Senate floor months from now.
Politico’s Manu Raju has the story:
In a letter to be delivered to Senate Republicans Tuesday, more than 145 conservatives – including Grover Norquist, Richard Viguerie and Gary Bauer — call for a filibuster of Sotomayor’s nomination if that’s what it takes to force a “great debate” over judicial philosophy.
But in an interview with POLITICO, Manuel Miranda – who orchestrated the letter – went much farther, saying that Mitch McConnell should “consider resigning” as Senate minority leader if he can’t take a harder line on President Barack Obama’s first Supreme Court nominee.
If Miranda’s name rings a bell, it’s because he achieved some notoriety back in 2004 when he got fired from his Senate leadership job after he was caught hacking into the computer files of Democratic staffers and stealing thousands of internal documents. Sounds like Miranda hasn’t exactly mended his hyperpartisan ways.
The letter appears to have been motivated by anger at Senate Republicans who have been critical of Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich, among others, for over-the-top attacks on Sotomayor.
The not-so-subtle message is: don’t forget who’s the boss here!