Well, the Senate confirmed Mukasey, 53-40. Nobody doubted that he was qualified for the post, and Sen. Schumer of New York ad even suggested Mukasey as a good choice in the beginning. But 40 Senators just had to vote no to make some stupid political point. None of them really had an objection to Mukasey except that he wouldn't take a position on whether or not a particular interrogation procedure (which, because it involved classified information Mukasey had not been cleared to receive, he didn't even know if it was in use!) constituted illegal torture.
It seems that the Senate needs to learn that the U. S. is not a parliamentary system. The executive does not fall if the legislature votes no-confidence. The Senate is not supposed to refuse Presidential nominations to Cabinet posts just because they have policy disagreements with the President, or because they want to pressure the nominee into making statements that they might use against the President. The Senate's only reason to refuse a Presidential nomination to an executive office is lack of qualifications. (It might be in order to give more input on nominations to judicial offices, though even there they have no business trying to force the President to nominate someone that does not meet with his approval.)
This is the most belligerent Senate in recent history, and I think they need to read the Constitution and learn the difference between our system and parliamentary ones. Their duty is to legislate, not to try to control the Presidency.
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