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Howard Dean Says Alito Nomination "Is Going To Be In Trouble"

Reported by Ellen - November 1, 2005

Alan Colmes did a brief interview with Howard Dean on Hannity & Colmes last night about the Samuel A. Alito nomination to the US Supreme Court and about the CIA Leak Investigation. With his characteristic frankness, Dean told Colmes that he thinks that the Alito nomination was made out of weakness - a way for Bush to pander to his base and distract the nation from Scooter Libby's indictment and the continuing CIA Leak investigation. Dean seemed to think it would all catch up with Bush.

"This nomination is going to be in trouble," Dean said because Alito is "well outside the mainstream" and because Bush refused to take any input from the Senate Democrats.

Although he thought it was much too early to know if there would be a filibuster, Dean cited cases that are bound to raise some eyebrows: cases in which Alito said Congress didn't have the right to regulate machine guns, that it was OK to strip-search the wife and 10 year-old daughter of a suspect, despite not being named in the warrant, and where Alito required an overly high standard of proof for proving discrimination. Dean said that Alito must be questioned carefully about to what extent he thinks courts should be used to stop discrimination, to what extent police should be given free reign, to what extent should firearms be regulated by federal govt or whether a woman has the right to make her own decisions about her health care.

Dean also said that Bush was trying to use the nomination as a distraction away from Traitorgate (my term, not his) but that the investigation is not going away. He called on the President to fire Rove, regardless of whether he broke any laws because Bush gave his word that he would fire anybody involved in the leak, that Rove has been shown to be involved, that his involvement was unethical if not criminal and that he has no business having a security clearance.

Colmes asked what Democrats need to do to convince Americans they have a better vision for the country than Republicans. Dean said Democrats want to end the "culture of corruption" in Washington and some states such as California and Ohio. He said Democrats want to balance the budget, that "we haven't seen a Republican do that for 40 years." He said we want jobs to stay in this country, a health care system that covers everybody, a strong public education system and a strong defense that depends on telling the truth to our allies and to the families of our soldiers about why they're being sent abroad.

Dean thinks that Patrick Fitzgerald will investigate what role Vice President Dick Cheney played in the leaking of Valerie Plame's name to the press. "I suspect we're going to find that out because Fitzgerald has a reputation for being ruthless, relentless and totally non-political."

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