Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Romney Strikes Back

Things are likely to get worse for John McCain before they get better. In light of his dropping numbers due to his support of the Senate Immigration Bill, which looks to be dragged into the news cycle yet again, another significant speed bump is likely to appear.

In the next few days we should get a ruling from the Supreme Court on Wisconsin Right to Life v. The Federal Election Commission. This ruling is likely to strike down at least part of McCain-Feingold.

Barbara Lyons from Wisconsin Right to Life recounts part of the "judge talk" during the hearing:

We really have excellent attorneys and know they covered everything possible and we're very confident in them that they did the right thing and presented the arguments in a very coherent way that the justices would be happy about. I know that during oral arguments in April, Justices Breyer and Souter were agitated and apoplectic. They weren't happy about the situation at the time. What that means, I don't know. At one point, Justice Breyer said, "Well, why don't we just overturn the whole law?" At which point, Justice Scalia said, "Yeah, that's a great idea. Maybe we made a mistake in 2003."

If Breyer is sour on this issue, then supporters will have to hope for help from Samuel Alito, which is a tenuous straw at best.

A defeat for McCain-Feingold is something McCain can ill afford at this juncture. Not only is it a defeat for him personally, but it will help remind some that have placed McCain-Feingold in the background many of the unpalatable issues associated with it.

And don't think McCain will be able to get away with "no comment," as Mitt Romney, for one, has great plans to bring this issue to the forefront. As I previously noted, Romney tipped his hand to this in an earlier debate.

This, however, is not spur-of-the-moment opportunism, but something that has been in the works for quite a while.

Wisconsin Right to Life counsel is James Bopp Jr. For those not familiar with him, he is a well-respected Wisconsin lawyer specializing in tax law and right to life issues, and is a fervent Romney backer.

Note the date on that release, January 2007. Romney has been spoiling for this fight for a while now, and it appears that the time is nigh.

It will also be interesting to see if Fred Thompson, who helped McCain pass his Campaign Finance Legislation will also be affected at all by the Court's impending decision.


Anonymous said...

Someone explain why McCain-Feingold is a problem for conservatives?

I always hear the free speech stuff, but isn't it really that ProLife groups and other conservative "grass roots" (see the quotes) benefited like crazy from the type of financing? The money was poured into their coffers by big donors and this just shut off the coffers...am I right?

Framer said...

My biggest problem is that I shouldn't need to consult a lawyer to see what I can publish 60 or 90 days out of election day. The whole "free speech" concept works best when speech is not outlawed or moderated by inane laws. I guess I could generalize the Democratic position as free speech only applies to pornography :)

If you want to clean up Washington, limit each proposed law to 3 typewritten pages, single-spaced if necessary, and make the John Hancock of the person responsible for said law available in triple-sized bolded font. No more hiding stuff like earmarks and unnecessary pork with that scenario. And it has the added bonus of not trampling on the first ammendment.