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Opening Arguments

The South will rise again, and move

Hey, fellow crackers, did you know you were now a part of the South? At least NPR says so:

. . . a story on yesterday’s failed vote on Debo Adegbile began “a handful of southern Democrats joined Republicans yesterday to defeat president Obama’s choice to head the Justice Department’s civil rights division.”

That fine Southern gentleman Joe Donnelly, Democratic senator from Indiana, was one of the handful. So were Chris Coons of Delaware, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, John Walsh of Montana and Harry Reid of Nevada. Hmmm. The South seems to be moving west and east and north. Gotta keep that racial narrative going!

If I understand the objection against Adegbile, it's not that he defended a cop-killer -- every accused person deserves representataion and, after all, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts once defended a mass-murdering scumbag when he was a mere lawyer. It's that he turned the cop-killer's appeal process into a racially charged series of rallies. Is such a person really suited to head the civil rights division? Red State Democrats like Donnelly were said to be in a tough spot. Already vulnerable because of Obamacare and other factors, they made a political calculation not to anger the mainstream.

But  couldn't it be that they just voted the way they did for what they considered honorable reasons, deciding that perhaps this wasn't the right person for the job? Or does everything have to be political as well as racial?