Today: Michael Steele’s insights on haberdashery.
Rachel led off with the news that Congressional hearings on Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor will be on July 13.
How soon in to that last sentence did you know that this one would contain the phrase ‘Republicans pitched a fit’? Specifically, they are spinning into tizzies over being “rushed” to hold the hearings only 48 days after the nomination.
It’s going to take ages to learn all they need to about someone whose judicial decisions are a matter of public record.
Lest you think this is an actual issue, Rachel hastened to note that the time between Sotomayor’s nomination and confirmation hearings is average compared to the current Supreme Court members.
This is about having more opportunities to make frowny-faced sound bites that will seem forceful ‘round about election time and the leisure to fling mud while Sotomayor can’t strike back.
I mean, yes, she’s already been called mean, dumb, and a racist, but with a little more time, they may be able to work in insinuations about black magic or cattle rustling.
Republican strategist Mark McKinnon dropped in to suggest that alienating Latinos, women, liberals, thinking Republicans who would actually like to look at real issues, and nonracists might not be as awesome a political strategy as it first seems.
Law & Order
Ahmed Ghailani, a suspect in the 1998 embassy bombings, was moved from Guantanamo to New York to stand trial Tuesday. After his trial, Ghaliani will be issued a disguise and inducted into your niece’s brownie troop.
Rachel welcomed New York Times columnist Bob Herbert to remind us that our lofty national ideals are less impressive if we put them out in the garage when company comes over.
Speaking mothballing our most cherished principles, Senators Lindsey Graham (R – South Carolina) and Joe Lieberman (Democratish, Connecticut) are making a bold move to raise the Congressional Fit Index from “Tizzy” to “Hissy,” threatening to shut the Senate down until their amendment gets passed.
Their amendment would override the Freedom of Information Act to make it easy to suppress torture photos. Fascistinating!
I don’t want to dismiss fears that knowledge of the full extent of our torture programs (and the resultant torture culture) might endanger our troops, but does suppressing them really help?
The world already knows that the photos exist, and that they contain things that our government has deemed too horrible to see. Do we really want to leave the specifics up to rumor and imagination?
My new third-biggest irrational fear, after daddy longlegs and flan, now involves saying something stupid about trains within earshot of Rachel Maddow. Sorry, Night Hag. You’ll just have to try harder.
Rachel reported that the government stimulus money allowed a $130 million railway infrastructure project, a tunnel between New York and New Jersey, to get going.
It works! I thought it could, I thought it could, I thought it could, I thought it could!
Fellow trainiac Joe Biden said the tunnel would be great for, um, automobile traffic. So Rachel sent him back to the yard.
(Personal note to the Night Hag: Please do not really try harder.)
Dr. George Tiller’s family has — understandably, as Rachel was sure to point out — shut down his clinic. That leaves two late-term abortion providers in the entire nation, one happy terrorist, and a scary situation for clinic workers across the country.
Susan Hill, President of the National Women’s Health Organization, talked with Rachel about the frustrating task of getting local authorities to enforce the law.
GOP in Exile
I love you, Michael Steele. Just when I’m sure there is no joy left in the world, you come through for me.
Steele has really been working on that metaphor about how everyone is wearing their hats differently, but it’s all good because they’re all wearing the same Republican hat.
He broke out the latest incarnation on a group of College Republicans, none of whom were wearing hats.
That’s OK, though, because Steele explained: Obama wants everybody wearing the hat of one man (which is totally different than everybody wearing the same hat at different angles) but the Republicans are wearing “the hat of an idea.”
Not the idea of a hat, the hat of an idea.
So no ideas yet, but when they come, rest assured that there will be hats for them.
Now if you will excuse me, I have to try to get “The Safety Dance” unstuck from my head.
Rachel Re: Palau Survivors
We can’t keep people in Guantanamo indefinitely because it’s evil, but we also can’t put them in Supermax prisons in the United States with the other terrorists who are already there lest the Congressional Fit Index rise from “Hissy” to “Conniption.”
Rachel reported on a plan to send prisoners to the island of Palau.
Which was a hell of a way to find out that my genius plan for putting them on a giant ski gondola rotating endlessly around the perimeter of the country has been rejected.