Even worse than the Black Eyed Peas’ latest top-40 audio brainwash, “My Humps,” are the liberal interest groups’ attempts at mollifying constituents into joining their vehement, yet empty, opposition to Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito.
The effort is much like an uncoordinated a capella choir, whose members sing at different corners of the room a that song no one cares to listen to.
At least “My Humps” has a catchy beat.
The race to microphones and stacked press conferences for the myriad of groups formally announcing their opposition to Alito in the short week after the Christmas season and before hearings begin has gained the left little political traction.
Back-to-back press conferences put on at the National Press Club on Wednesday by feminist groups, People For the American Way and Alliance for Justice to enumerate reasons to reject Alito didn’t yield any Page 1 headlines in major newspapers despite being well-attended by their reporters.
Surprisingly, liberal advocacy groups are singing a few lines of the beginning of a chorus, but their messages are so disjointed and repetitious that they tire sensationalist-driven reporters who seem to be dragging themselves to event after event for the sake of having nothing better to do.
No Smoking Guns
PFAW, Alliance for Justice, The Women’s Law Center have all issued extensive “reports” detailing Alito’s “extremism.” PFAW and Alliance for Justice’s reports are both 150-plus pages long and nearly every interest group has their own backgrounders and talking points for their individual campaigns.
Liberal leaders are favoring “time machine” scare tactics are used to convince followers Alito is intent on repealing rights for women and minorities.
In same-day press conferences Wednesday, Kim Gandy, president of National Organization for Women said, “He [Alito] would be like a human time machine where sexual harassment and discrimination were all in a days work for women. …This is a justice who would shift the balance of the court in the wrong direction and send us back 40 years.”
That same day, PFAW’s president, Ralph Neas, echoed Gandy. “He [Alito] would be like a walking constitutional amendment turning back the clock seven decades on social justice accomplishments,” he said.
Elliot Mincberg, vice president of PFAW, probably best described the left’s strategy, although only in vague terms. He said liberal attacks on Alito should be focused in three primary areas: lack of credibility, disrespect for precedent and Alito’s frequent dissents on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Liberals often cite Alito’s membership of the Concerned Alumni of Princeton, which is accused of seeking to bar women and minorities from attending the university as evidence of his racism. Other credibility threats include a statement Alito made in 1990 that he would recuse himself from cases involving the brokerage firm Smith Barney he had investments with or his sister’s law firm, Carpenter, Bennet & Morrissey. Alito later did rule on cases involving both organizations.
But even the most extreme left-wingers concede Judge Alito is qualified for the position.
To justify their opposition, they recklessly manipulate Harriet Miers’ withdrawal. Although she lacked any experience as a judge, liberals still claim she was defeated by the conservative base’s lacking confidence in her conservatism.
Minceberg said, “It would be a dereliction of duty for the Senate not to consider the same thing [ideaology]. I’m not going to fall into their trap of them saying ‘You prove he’s not technically qualified.’ Is he a qualified judge? Absolutely. No question about that from a technical, professional point of view.”
On the grassroots side, three feminist groups are hyping a national college student-led initiative that a visit to their briefing session in a Lutheran Church one block off Capitol Hill revealed to only consist of 35 female students. The effort is coordinated by the National Organization for Women, Feminist Majority Fund and National Congress of Black Women, which held a press conference to announce they were "ramping up" their campaign to block Alito from the Supreme Court.
Feminist Majority Foundation President Eleanor Smeal told reporters the women were from "35 states who gave up their winter vacation to help block Alito’s confirmation because they don’t want to lose rights necessary for modern life."
But boasting students coming in from 35 states is misleading. Feminist students Summer Ferguson and Stephanie Longley told me although they both attended school in Michigan, their families were from Virginia and they were staying at home with them while they worked with the so-called Freedom Winter initiative.
"We just drove in," Ferguson said when I asked if plane tickets were provided for them. She said those who did not have lodging could get free housing if they needed. The girls also said the Feminist Majority Foundation would vouch that their winter volunteer work was considered an "internship."
Yesterday morning, yet another youth coalition met at the Center for American Progress to announce its formal opposition to Alito’s confirmation.
Among the 15 groups included were the Hip Hop Caucus, which according to its website, "was established to provide a comprehensive agenda for the Hip-Hop community both domestically and abroad," and the League of Pissed of Voters, which has published a book called "How to Get Stupid White Men Out of Office."
The hosting organization, Campus Progress, sister organization of the Center for American Progress, has been targeting college students heavily in its campaign against Alito, which is named "Alito’s America."
“Alito’s America,” tagged with an odd logo of a thundercloud walking over a family carrying a gun, video camera and has two smokestacks protruding from the top, aims to convince college students and others that if Alito is confirmed to the court, America will change dramatically.
In a multimedia presentation created by Campus Progress, the organization tells students: "In Alito’s America, many workers got excluded from federal job safety laws because of Alito’s narrow view of the federal government’s power to protect the health and safety of it’s workers." The clip shows one of the a factory worker’s arm being cut off and mangled by three rotating hacksaws.
Campus Progress doesn’t stop there in its gimmicky attempts to snare college students. It is also giving away an iPod Nano as top prize for a "photo petition" contest, where students are asked to send in a photo of themselves holding a sign explaining why they are opposed to Alito. Five hundred other students will win a beverage koozie with the thundercloud logo.
With all this activity, it’s amazing how little impact it seems to be having on his prospects for confirmation. Just yesterday, in fact, Democrats signaled that they wouldn’t even attempt a filibuster — a move the left surely didn’t appreciate.
Maybe liberals can hire Fergie next time around for better airplay. Even with the worst lyrics in the world, people still listen to her.