Sen. Murkowski makes right call

Letter to the editor

Posted: Tuesday, May 10, 2005

With each passing day, the so-called "nuclear option" moves closer to becoming a reality. That measure would allow Republican senators to end by majority vote Democratic filibustering of President George W. Bush's judicial nominees whom they strongly oppose.

Last week, those senators who remain undecided or opposed to the nuclear option have been pressured. Progress for America, a conservative advocacy organization, commenced airing advertisements in states, including Alaska, it believes include such senators. On Tuesday, People for the American Way, a liberal advocacy group, began running responsive ads in these states.

Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski has commendably resisted these pressures. Last week, when Focus on the Family labeled her "squishy," she retorted: "I am not squishy," saying "they're not going to put me in a corner this way." Sen. Murkowski has taken no public position on the nuclear option, but she is working on a compromise that would accord all nominees votes. Murkowski added, "I don't want to change the rules" today in ways "we might regret" later.

For the good of Alaska, the Senate and the nation, Sen. Murkowski must continue to resist voting on the nuclear option until all feasible alternatives have been exhausted.

Carl Tobias

Richmond, Va.



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