Kimberley Strassel | Republicans are finally learning to play hardball

Kimberley Strassel, Wall Street Journal:

Democrats are furious, though watching them try to shame Mr. McConnell into moving up a vote on the first black woman nominee for AG is amusing. Someone had the bad idea to roll out Sen. Dick Durbin (D., Ill.), who compared Ms. Lynch to Rosa Parks, railing that Republicans were making her “sit in the back of the bus.”

This would be the same Dick Durbin who filibustered Janice Rogers Brown (the first black woman nominee to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals) and who kicked off the bus Miguel Estrada (the first Hispanic nominee to that court)—filibustering him seven times over 28 months, until he withdrew his nomination. Progress, thy name is not Dick Durbin.

Similarly laughable are Democratic claims that Ms. Lynch has now waited longer than any AG nominee since Ed Meese in 1985. That number only works if it includes all the time last year that Mr. Reid, who was still running the Senate (remember that?), didn’t act on her nomination. He was too busy packing the courts with Obama judicial nominees. And it ignores that Mr. Reid spent weeks locking down the Senate over Homeland Security funding, and now over human trafficking.

Mr. McConnell shouldn’t budge. Because what is notable is how much Democrats want Ms. Lynch confirmed. They want something. In such scenarios, the Republican job is to transact, to make clear what the left must give in return. This is the model the GOP used in the omnibus last year, in which it ceded a few Democratic demands, and in return landed some key policy victories on issues like trucking regulations and endangered-species listings.


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