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President Bush More Inclusive Of Democrats In Supreme Court Discussions Than Hannity & Colmes

Reported by Ellen - July 13, 2005

Ever since Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor gave notice of her retirement, Hannity & Colmes has had nightly discussions about the Court, the vacancy, the nominating process, etc. with conservatives only. Friday night's sole guest on the subject was GOP jackpot C. Boyden Gray. Monday night it was conservative Judge Charles Pickering. Tuesday was Republican Senator Lindsay Graham. Previous guests were Judge Robert Bork, Ed Meese, Ann Coulter, Judge Roy Moore and Mark Levin. Come to think of it, I can't name any Democrats who have discussed this issue on the show. If President Bush can invite the Democrats to the White House to talk about the nominating process, why can't FOX News invite them on H&C?

Perhaps such blatant conservative favoritism was what prompted Alan Colmes to bring up Karl Rove during his part of the interview with Senator Lindsay Graham last night.

Sean Hannity opened the segment by talking about Bush's promise that he'd appoint an orginalist to the Supreme Court. Hannity expressed concern that Democrats will filibuster and demonize if Bush "fulfills his promise."

Colmes began his segment by saying that Democrats have done the opposite, they have been praising the president.

Graham said he's optimistic that a conservative judge will get an up or down vote.

Then Colmes said: Senator, let me bridge the last segment of the show (about Rove) with this one... I keep hearing about the president, you know, said he's got to keep his word about a constitutionalist to the Supreme Court. The president also said if there was any wrongdoing, that that person, in terms of the Plame incident, that person would be out of his administration. Should the president keep his word on the former as well as the latter?

It was a great question that obviously caught Graham off guard. He said that Rove should be presumed innocent until proven guilty and that we should let the legal system take care of it. "Otherwise, just shut up because you're ruining a guy's reputation before anything has happened. There is no evidence that I've heard of yet that would suggest the guy committed a crime and if it's not a crime, it's all politics."

Comment: Rove may not have committed a crime but his behavior is pretty damning on the face of it. Rove has recently admitted that in some fashion he told a reporter that Plame worked for the CIA. This revelation came after almost two years of denying that he had. Now he and the Bush Administration refuse to speak publicly about it at all. It sure quacks like a duck. But President Bush said in 2004 he would fire anyone found to have been involved in the leak - which Rove has already admitted - not anyone proven in a court of law to have committed a crime.

Colmes, however, moved back to the topic of the Supreme Court (after saying he wished Republicans had given Bill Clinton such a presumption of innocence) with another good question, one that I'm sure would have flummoxed Hannity: Under what conditions would the Democrats be right to filibuster?

Graham said that a character problem or ethical problem, not ideology, would justify a filibuster. Being conservative or liberal has never been an extraordinary circumstance, he said, referring to the bi-partisan agreement under which Democrats promised to limit their filibustering.

I wished Colmes had asked Graham whether he thought extremist views were extraordinary circumstances but the time was up.

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