04/05/2017

Gorsuch Filibuster Will Be The Dumbest In US History

Rich Lowry, New York Post

Throughout its history, the US Senate has experienced disgraceful filibusters (Strom Thurmond against the 1957 Civil Rights Act), entertaining filibusters (Huey Long in 1935 reciting a fried oyster recipe) and symbolic filibusters (Rand Paul making a point about drone strikes in 2013). But the filibuster Chuck Schumer is about to undertake against Judge Neil Gorsuch’s Supreme Court nomination is perhaps the institution’s dumbest.

It won’t block Gorsuch, won’t establish any important jurisprudential principle and won’t advance Democratic strategic goals, indeed the opposite. A Gorsuch filibuster would be an act of a sheer partisan pique against the wrong target, with the wrong method, at the wrong time.

The effort to portray Gorsuch as out of the mainstream has fallen flat. He has the support of President Barack Obama’s former solicitor general, Neal Katyal. He got the American Bar Association’s highest rating. He’s been endorsed by USA Today. He will receive the votes of at least three Democratic senators. Some radical.

From the moment of his announcement by President Trump to the very last question at his confirmation hearings, Gorsuch has been an exemplary performer, whose deep knowledge has been matched by his winning temperament. The attack on him as an enemy of the little man is based on a few decisions where he clearly followed the law, even though it resulted in an unsympathetic outcome.

Much has been made of a case involving a driver for TransAm Trucking who had pulled over on the side of the road in freezing temperatures and, fearing for his safety, drove off in defiance of a direct order of a supervisor. Days later, he was fired.

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Thanks to "bracket creep," the inflation of the 1970s pushed millions of taxpayers into higher tax brackets even though their inflation-adjusted incomes were not rising. To help offset this tax increase and also to improve incentives to work, save, and invest, President Reagan proposed sweeping tax rate reductions during the 1980s. What happened? Total tax revenues climbed by 99.4 percent during the 1980s, and the results are even more impressive when looking at what happened to personal income tax revenues. Once the economy received an unambiguous tax cut in January 1983, income tax revenues climbed dramatically, increasing by more than 54 percent by 1989 (28 percent after adjusting for inflation).

 

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