shake the mountain, stop the confirmation of alito

More Senators Announce Opposition to Alito
More Senators have announced their opposition to Samuel Alito for the Supreme Court. Encouragingly, no additional Democrats have announced support for Alito since Ben Nelson (NE). Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL), the Democratic Whip, announced his opposition to a packed auditorium at Northwestern University School of Law.
"In the record, the writings, the words, and the life of Samuel Alito, I searched for evidence of his caring heart -- evidence that for the next two or three decades he would use his position on the Supreme Court to enlarge our freedom, protect our privacy, and respect the delicate balance of power and responsibility our Constitution creates," said Senator Durbin. "At the end of the day, at this historic moment, I cannot say with confidence that Samuel Alito meets that test."
Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), in announcing his opposition, said, "Based on his record, I am gravely concerned that Judge Alito does not believe the Congress has the authority to protect the fundamental rights of all Americans."
Other Senators who have announced publicly their opposition to Alito include Patrick Leahy (D-VT) (the Ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) (the only woman on the Judiciary Committee), Ted Kennedy (D-MA), Ken Salazar (D-CO), and Max Baucus (D-MT). Senators Leahy, Baucus, and Salazar all voted for John Roberts in September.
with The Smeal Report and the New Leif blogs at MsMagazine.com
Call your Senators and urge them to oppose Alito
Make an emergency contribution to the Feminist Majority's Save Roe Campaign. We must be a strong voice in this crucial fight to save Roe and the Supreme Court for women's rights.

that's from the feminist wire.

do you get what's happening? we're shaking that mountain. we just have to keep shaking and we can move it. keep shaking, keep speaking out, keep pressuring your senators.

i spent 9 hours at t's salon today. every woman that came in got stopped by me. more than a few asked me, 'you're not a jehovah's witness are you?' i must have had a zeal about me because i doubt they show cleavage.

64 women and 2 guys. that's 66 people who called their senators (2 calls each) on my cell phone today. i'm going to do it on monday as well. t said it doesn't put her out at all and if some 1 has a problem with abortion, they're probably not keen on an african-american lesbian doing their hair so better they should find another salon.

tomorrow, t's getting a group of friends together, a large group, for brunch and i'm going to talk to them as well. i want to give a big shout out to t who has more than done her part on the alito nomination but keeps going and thinking up new ideas.

monday she's doing a 1/2 price special at the salon for any 1 who calls both senators while they're in the salon.

so what are you doing?

i heard from some of my older readers and i'm glad to know they're talking to their friends. that's great as a start. but you have to follow up. they may mean to call but then forget. they may be nervous about calling and need you there to reassure them.

don't think that because they agree with you they're making the call. follow up and be sure.

let me guilt trip you. c.i. will have given 3 speeches on the importance of filibustering alito tonight. then c.i. will hop on the plane tomorrow morning and give more speeches. have you checked out the common ills? do you realize that you've got entries there and you've got all the work c.i.'s done for the daily round-robins?

i know most of my readers are members of the common ills community so let me guilt you into doing more. the vote is tuesday. we have to stay focused. c.i.'s tired but keeps pressing on. so what are you doing?

we've got to shake the mountain, we've got to move the mountain and that's going to take all of us and then some. so get active and stay active.

i think i'm tired and then i think about c.i. and realize i can give more. that's true of all of us. if this is important, we can give and give and give until the vote. it's not that far away.

you don't want to wake up wednesday to find that alito was confirmed and wonder if you had done everything that you could have. you want to know you gave everything you had to this fight.

hopefully wednesday's papers will bear the headline 'alito defeated in senate vote' or 'alito filibustered'. if that happens, you can take pride in the work you did and realize that politics isn't about somebody in d.c., it's about us, it is our lives. but if the headlines say 'alito confirmed' you are going to feel guilty if you didn't dig deep and pull it out for the last round.

don't let yourself feel guilty. use the links at the top of this post. or go to now and planned parenthood and use their resources. go to all of them.

call your senators on monday. say you want to know if they are going to vote 'no' and if they are prepared to 'filibuster.'

1 reader scheduled an appointment. she wasn't able to meet with her senator but she did meet with the woman who runs the office. and she didn't go alone. she took 4 friends with her. that was 5 women saying vote no and filibuster. that's amazing. congratulations to kim!

let's move the mountain.


get active, stay active, stop alito from being confirmed to the court

so my high school readers are telling me that they're writing their senators. 11 of them also called their senators. what are my older readers doing to stop alito from getting crowned as a supreme court justice?

i hope you're being active and that it's just that this is something you're used to doing. my high school readers are amazing me with their e-mails. courtney wrote about how she called and was put on hold and she was nervous and almost hung up but kept telling herself she could do this.
a staff member got back on the phone and courtney read from the piece of paper she'd written her thoughts down on. that was a big deal courtney and i'm so proud of you!

there are so many great e-mails and i need to note jackie too because she's circulated 2 petitions, 1 for each of her senators, at her high school and her mother's picking her up from school early friday so that they can deliver it to the offices of their senators. good for you jackie! and good for your mother too!

i'm going to go into this in the roundtable tonight that will be in friday's gina & krista round-robin and i'm also going to write a thing about the 1st time something moved me enough to get active because my high school readers' excitement has made me remember what that felt like.

let me say it again, i hope my older readers are being as active as the younger 1s.

this is so important. i think we can force them to filibuster in the senate.

but that's going to mean reaching in and pulling out all the stops for the next days. we have between now and the 24th to move a mountain and i think we're shaking it.

i'm going to join c.i. and elaine in noting this good news from the feminist wire because if there's any 1 thinking 'well if we stood a chance, i might do something . . .' maybe this will get you off the couch, futon, et al:

January 19, 2006
No on Alito Momentum Building
The momentum to stop the confirmation of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court is growing. Several Democratic Senators have already announced their intention to oppose Alito.
These Senators include Patrick Leahy (VT), Ranking Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee; Judiciary Committee member Ted Kennedy (MA); Barbara Mikulski (MD); and Max Baucus (MT). Senators Leahy and Baucus had voted to confirm John Roberts in September. The option for a filibuster to block Alito is still on the table.
with The Smeal Report and the New Leif blogs at Ms Magazine.com
Call your Senators and urge them to oppose Alito
Make an emergency contribution to the Feminist Majority’s Save Roe Campaign. We must be a strong voice in this crucial fight to save Roe and the Supreme Court for women’s rights.Media Resources: Feminist Majority

we can do this if we all dig deep. if you haven't done anything yet, get motivated and get active. if you're some 1 who's done everything this week, do it again. or do the 10 people each day that c.i.'s been stressing. that's where each day you tell 10 people about this. you have your senators' phone numbers with you and when some 1 says, 'yeah, i should do something,' you dial the number and hand the phone over.

people always mean to get involved. you need to make it as easy for them as you can. and if you don't have a cell phone, use your home phone. invite some people over and use the home phone or use a pay phone. but the point isn't just that you get the word out, the point is that when some 1 says 'no i haven't done anything but i should' you're right there ready to help them at that moment.

i'm not just tossing out things for other's today. t saw c.i.'s thing and we were talking about so tomorrow i will be at her salon talking to every 1 who comes in and i'll have the cell phone ready.
we're shaking the mountain. can we move it? not if we sit on our butts and wait for our senators to come to their senses or for some 1 else to do the work. get active. for those who already have gotten active, stay active.


tell your senators to filibuster

a lot of e-mails about c.i.'s "NYT: '2002 Memo Doubted Uranium Sale Claim' (Eric Lichtblau)" which seems to have fired up a lot of you to fight alito.

you're seeing a connection that's obvious to you but i had to think about it.

i'm guessing that c.i.'s righteous anger over iraq made us all realize how much we have to fight on so many topics.

this isn't 1 we expected to have to fight on. we didn't expect weak willed senate democrats to attempt to stab us in the back. besides the anger, i think we're also shocked.

we've given the democratic party our money, our time and our votes. to be treated this way, where they won't even fight for us, is a shock.

i think the lesson here is a politician won't do a damn thing for you out of loyalty or the goodness of their heart or fairness. you have to press your issues and you have to keep pressing them. they'll sell you out if they think they can get away with it.

so let's show them what's at stake. you can use the action lists in the gina & krista round-robins that are going out every day between now and the 24th or you can use this from now:

Alito Must Not Be Confirmed -
Demand a Filibuster Today
Call Your Senators
By the time the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Samuel Alito ended last week, Judge Alito had dodged so many questions that we knew little more about his judicial philosophy than we had before they started. Even so, Judge Alito's unwillingness to stipulate that Roe v. Wade is "settled law", as recently confirmed Chief Justice Roberts had, puts a woman's right to choose in great peril. This factor alone should be enough for Senators to vote against his nomination.
Due to the current balance of power in the Senate (55 Republicans, 44 Democrats), we do not have the necessary 51 "no" votes to defeat Alito outright. So the only way for senators to block confirmation is for them to launch a filibuster -- which can only be ended if 60 of the 100 senators vote to stop the filibuster and proceed to a vote on the nomination. In other words, IF there is a filibuster, 41 senators can block the nomination. But without a filibuster, those same 41 votes would not be sufficient to stop Alito -- so the "no" votes are meaningless in terms of the final outcome, unless there is a filibuster.
Make the message to your senators clear: Our nation needs them to do more than vote no. They must support a filibuster in order to prevent Alito's confirmation to the Supreme Court.
Please call your Senators today and ask them to support a filibuster in opposition to this nomination. A no vote without a filibuster is a meaningless gesture. Our Senators' commitment to women's rights is a hollow shell if they will not fight to preserve them.
Talking Points for CallsIt is very clear that Judge Alito does not consider Roe v. Wade "settled law".
This factor alone should be enough for Senators to vote against his nomination.
We need them to do more than vote no.
Ask them to support a filibuster in opposition to this nomination.
A "no" vote without a filibuster is a meaningless gesture.
Our Senators' commitment to women's rights is a hollow shell if they will not fight to preserve them.
More information on Alito's record is available online.
If you're having trouble getting through at the local number, try the Senate Switchboard at (202) 224-3121
Call your Senators

or you can use everything. and schedule time to meet with your senator or their staff. face to face express how you feel. tell them to filibuster!


let your senators hear you scream 'no!' to alito

Alito Committee Vote Scheduled for January 24
Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats won a victory in delaying the committee vote on Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito to January 24. Women's rights and civil rights leaders are extremely concerned about press reports and statements made by Senate Democrats over the weekend indicating that the filibuster option is highly unlikely.
"Women must refuse to take no for an answer," said Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority. "Too much is at stake for women's rights and civil rights to give up on stopping Alito. The Feminist Majority and other groups committed to preserving the past 40 years of progress for women and people of color will intensify our efforts to block Alito and save the Supreme Court."
with The Smeal Report and the New Leif blogs at MsMagazine.com
TAKE ACTION Call your Senators and urge them to oppose Alito
DONATE Make an emergency contribution to the Feminist Majority’s Save Roe Campaign. We must be a strong voice in this crucial fight to save Roe and the Supreme Court for women’s rights.
Media Resources: Feminist Majority

that's from the feminist wire, 'alito committee vote scheduled for january 24.' can we move mountains in little over a week?

we've done it in less time before.

i've got a column in tomorrow's round-robin. i didn't know c.i. was working with gina & krista on a special round-robin until i checked my e-mail this morning. good for all 3 of them for digging deep to find the strength for more fighting.

from now until the 24th, there will be a daily round-robin. this will include contact information and anything members want to share about what they are doing in their areas.

it will also list resources like now and planned parenthood and the feminist majority foundation.

speaking of now, let's note this from them:

Don't Confirm Anti-Roe Nominee to Supreme CourtSenators Must Filibuster Samuel Alito
These are the faces of women who died because they could not obtain safe and legal abortions.
If Roe v. Wade is overturned, these pictures could include your daughter, sister, mother, best friend, granddaughter . . .
Don't let George W. Bush and the U.S. Senate put another anti-abortion justice on the Supreme Court.
Read More
Take Action NOW
Support NOW's Emergency Workto Save the Court
Tell A Friend to Take Action to Save the Court

we need to be doing everything on our part to stop alito.

the democrats want to screw us. that's obvious.

we need to make sure they realize how much is at stake.

i think women (and a lot of men) get how much is at stake if alito is confirmed. what we need to do between now and the 24th is make sure our senators grasp how much is at stake if they betray us.

so that's my main message for tonight. if you need some motivation to get active, check out this from c.i. on dianne feinstein performance at last week's hearings and since:

She seemed to do just barely enough to say, "I touched my bases!" She did touch on all of her constituents concerns, she just didn't argue for them. If you cared about the environment or abortion or other issues (or all), expect the announcement in the mail of how she asked about those issues. She didn't ask any questions well -- which the mailing won't note as it hits you up for money.
It's called cover your own ass and she did that. And apparently she won't be called on her actions by too many. (Good for Michelman for saying something.)
I never need to suffer through "Miss Diane, Girl Senator" and her "I know nothing about lawyering" remarks as she embarrasses herself repeatedly (and embarrasses more than herself since she's the only woman on the committee) with "What kind of a judge do you think Judge Alito will be?" type questions that are possibly a notch below Barbara Walters asking, "If you were a tree, what sort of tree would you be?"
As with so many of her questions, they were abstract ones, the replies to which could be imagined ahead of time. Alito wiggled around every question but let's not kid that Feinstein's questions to him and on him did not come with plenty of wiggle room built in.
She compared him to Scalia (on Face the Nation, if you read the article) but doesn't think that he shouldn't be on the Court because they disagree. Since the beginning, Feinstein's gotten a lot of money from women's groups (not on the right) and always presented herself as a friend to abortion. The question some should ask now is, "That's friendship?"
The emergence of "Miss Diane, Girl Senator" ("Donna Reed had more bite" as Trina's sister-in-law noted) is a surprise because she seems to get more gauzey and soft focus with each year. Hopefully her donations will get more gauzey and soft focus as well. (Her state support is already in question and has been since she supported the war. She thinks she can "big tent" it but seems to fail to grasp the concerns of the people whose votes she needs.)
"Miss Diane, Girl Senator" (and yes, that's a mispelling of her name and no, I'm not concerned -- maybe she lost the additional "n" when she forgot how to fight?) actions call to mind Florida, 1972 for anyone who wants to remember the feelings of betrayal then. Time and energy was poured in and the plank was pulled. (Those who still have their "Make Policy Not Coffee" buttons will remember that time well.) (And possibly some of those buttons could be sent to Feinstein? Or create a new button just for her: "Come To The Commitee Table As An Equal Or Don't Bother To Show") As was noted then, we have to know our enemies. We should also know our friends and Feinstein's conduct (on the hearings and apparently on Face the Nation as well) were not the actions of a friend.
Michelman on Friday was more professional, a stronger voice, more to the point, than Feinstein at any minute in the hearings. If those were the actions of a friend, she owes a big apology and words alone won't cut it. It's not bad enough that she was ineffecutal in the hearings (that's being generous), she's now sending out the message that it's over and stop fighting it.
The Dems, after the 2004 election, used the myth of the "values voters" to run for cover (not from our money, never from our money). The party we've turned out for consistently in large numbers made a tactical decision (witness their running of Casey Junior). We need to stop mistaking that our visit to senators offices while they nod with a concerned look means we have a voice in the party. We don't. It's 1972 all over again where we'll be promised anything ahead of time and then be stabbed in the back while offered the rationalization of "That's how it had to be."
Instead of making nice, we need to make demands. This is ridiculous and Feinstein shouldn't be given a pass because she's been perceived as "a friend" (her conduct in the hearings alone should bury that notion). She has a place on the committee only because we made demands. Silencing criticism of the war in 2004 to get behind Kerry (I supported Kerry) was a mistake. It allowed him to posture as Bush-lite on the war. Silencing criticism of what went on last week would be the same mistake. It will only embolden those pushing the party to go right.
We have been taken for granted (the same way others have been but some have a hard time seeing that it's happening to us due to our large numbers) and we got screwed last week repeatedly. That includes by our "friend" Feinstein. Whether we can stop Alito or not, I honestly don't know. But at a time when so many elected officials have backed off everything the Democratic Party was supposed to stand for to the point that abortion rights were the last large difference, we can say clearly, "Want my vote? Earn it."
Feinstein was the worst. She conducted herself poorly when she was questioning. She stepped on Ted Kennedy's questioning (in a cutesy manner) when he was making strong points. She only sits on the commmittee because of the gender quake. If she can't get it together, get off the committee.

so are we going to let some 1 like dianne feinstein, who is the 1st to desert us, determine how the alito vote will go or are we going to say 'no!' i say we say 'no!' i say we scream 'no!' get active and let your senators know that this isn't a game and they can't put alito on the court without fallout. we will not make nice, we will not say 'oh well.' you stand up for us, you stand by the promises you made us, or you be prepared to go it alone. women (and many men) aren't going to put up with this crap.


the day and the dems

mike called and asked if i was blogging today?

yeah, i'd just taken time today to catch up with friends. i went into the city and hung out with t for a couple of hours, we went to lunch, then i caught up with some other friends. a friend has a birthday coming up and i had to shop for a gift. it was just a catch up and run errands day.

so it was just me and the guy who looks like an extra from the godfather on steroids. i'm glad i've got a guest room here or i guess he's have to sleep on the couch. i already told him that tomorrow morning let me have my coffee before saying anything.

i don't care who you are, friend, lover or, in his case, bodyguard, don't say a word until i get that 1st sip of coffee. it's always amazed me how many people i know do not drink coffee. c.i. has never drank coffee. ever. mormon!

i'm joking, c.i.'s not a mormon. the family dog got into the coffee when c.i. was a small child and c.i. was the 1 who found him, dead, so coffee isn't a fond smell for c.i. elaine's jittery in the morning until she has her 1st cup but she's always rushing around so that probably helps that she avoids it until she's almost out the door. you'd never know it to look at her, she's always the picture of sophistication and impeccably dressed, but she's pulling everything on while in motion. to look at her, you'd think, 'oh she must be this ocean of calm each morning carefully selecting each outfit and accessory.' she's like a cyclone. she's rushing around, brushing her teeth, looking for what to wear, all at once. she hits the shower and that's probably the only time she's standing moderately still, the minutes she comes out of the shower, she's madness in motion. anytime i'm present, i just sip my coffee and stay out of her way. and it never fails that when she finally grabs her cup of coffee and takes that first sip, she'll ask, 'ready to go?'

i like to begin the day slowly.

that's why i'm not a morning blogger.

so the bodyguard's watching tv and i'm in the bedroom doing this entry and listening to james blunt. i picked that up for myself. kat and jess and ty especially have been high on that cd and i kept meaning to check it out but i hadn't had time to shop since christmas. (or hadn't made time.) (and apologies to a friend who had a birthday during the hearings. i ordered a gift, at the last minute, online. i was focused on the hearings and didn't even realize it was a best friend's birthday until that day around five.) if you missed kat's review of james blunt's back to bedlham, please check that out.

i was looking for bright eyes motion sickness as well but couldn't find it. i'll probably look again later this week. i feel like i have to provide field trips or else the bodyguard will be sitting around bored.

at lunch t and i were both saying to sit with us and he kept saying no, he was 'on duty.' so he sat at the table next to us.

i feel like judith miller with a minder.

okay, my favorite song by james blunt just came on (i've listened to this cd over and over this evening). it's the piano ballad. 'goodbye my lover' is the name of the song.

ty played this track over the phone to get me hooked on the album. ty was telling me i had to hear it. it's a great song but the whole 'you have to listen to this' reminded me of when c.i. played liz phair's 'divorce song' over the phone to me once. i'm not really impressed with liz anymore. exile in guyville was an incredible cd. then she lost me. i hope the new teeny bopper/sex pot phase pays the rent and brings her new fans but if i wanted to listen to avril, i'd listen to avril.

so alito. if you read the common ills yesterday or today, c.i.'s said it better than i could. we were screwed. it's that simple.

by the way, it's 'dianne' feinstein. we were sure it was 'diane.' well, c.i. kept saying 'i believe it has 2 "n"s in it' but like c.i. said this morning, i won't lose any sleep over it.

that extra 'n' was probably too heavy for delicate diane.

let me pull from c.i.'s entry because kate michelman had the guts to say what needed to be said:

"Since the last election there seems to be less comfort, if you will, or less willingness to be very forthright or strong on a woman's right to choose," Ms. Michelman said in a telephone interview on Sunday. "It is worrisome that there wasn't more strength behind their questioning" of Judge Alito's views on abortion.

i feel stabbed in the back and betrayed by a party that doesn't want to fight for my rights.

i'm furious about the whole thing.

i was wondering how many people felt that way so while i was hanging out at t's salon today, i asked that and there wasn't a woman there who didn't express rage over the hearings and dianne's declaration of no filibuster. old, young, women of all colors and ethnicities, we are disgusted with the senate democrats.

they really tore into dianne. (including that ridiculous hair 'do' she insists upon wearing.) t told them about 'miss diane, girl senator' and they wanted to hear all about that. she was just disgraceful in the hearings.

i hope we're sharing our rage with 1 another but i also hope we're sharing it with our senators. they need to grasp how angry we are with them, how disgusted we are.

i can't believe how dianne and the committee acted. (there were exceptions of life but overall the committee was dead.) they really did screw us over. and they seem to think that they can get away with it. they can't.

i don't care if they're the only game in town, they're going to find that this performance is going to haunt them.

that's all i'm going to write tonight. just thinking about the hearings depresses me. but i'm not sitting on my feelings and doing nothing about them and you shouldn't either. call, schedule meetings with your senator or her/his staff. let them know how offended you are. and remember that now has Take Action: Call Your Senators Today.