It seems that the administration* has managed to find a candidate for the federal bench that makes even some of the leading sheep in the Republican congressional caucus gag on his nomination...not that they won't vote for him or anything. From Politico:
Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) in particular chided Steven Menashi for not being more forthcoming during his confirmation hearing after the nominee wouldn’t provide specifics on how or if he helped shape Trump’s immigration policy. Menashi is currently associate counsel to the president...
Graham criticized Menashi for his editorial in the New York Sun on trial lawyers that the senator said suggested that such lawyers took advantage of the public. “You said something about trial lawyers that I particularly don’t like,” said Graham, who asked Menashi if he had ever represented a client in court. Graham cited his own experience as a plaintiff’s lawyer and said that he “didn’t have time to do frivolous lawsuits.” Menashi responded that the editorial was written before he went to law school and “should not be seen as representative of [his] views as an attorney.”
Oh, Lindsey. You barbarian, you.
But the real gold was to be found in Menashi's work on the administration*'s immigration policy. That also is what drew protestors to his hearing, and to the offices of various senators, over the past few days.
Some of the most heated moments in the hearing took place when senators grilled Menashi about his work for the White House. Menashi, for the most part, refused to provide many details. “I’m just asking if you have worked or advised on the administration’s policy of separating families at the border,” asked Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the committee’s ranking member. “I’m not asking what, just whether you’ve done it.”
Graham even came to Feinstein’s defense after Menashi responded briefly to similar questions from Republican Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri. “Mr. Menashi we’re not going to do this, you’re not going to answer his questions and not answer hers,” Graham said. After Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) described the hearing as a “worthless exercise,” Graham advised Menashi to be more forthcoming and said that Democrats were only asking him questions about narrow subject matters.
At least part of the Senate's annoyance with this particular nomination is the fact that the administration* has attempted to zip Menashi through the process. The administration*, it turns out, had a very good reason for this. From CNN:
Steven Menashi, a Stanford-trained lawyer who clerked for Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, wrote dozens of editorials and blog posts in the late 1990s and early 2000s for a number of college and professional publications decrying "leftist multiculturalism" and "PC orthodoxy." He complained about "gynocentrists," wrote that the Human Rights Campaign "incessantly exploited the slaying of Matthew Shepard for both financial and political benefit" and argued that a Dartmouth fraternity that held a "ghetto party" wasn't being racist.
He attacked academic multiculturalism as "thoroughly bankrupt" and, in 2002, defended then-Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi amid a worldwide controversy over comments asserting the superiority of Western civilization over Islamic culture -- for which Berlusconi himself ultimately apologized.
He's also a product of that viper pit, The Dartmouth Review, which is the best excuse I know for turning northern New England back to Canada. (Sorry, Bernie). His entire career has been yet another example of a coddled specimen in the wingnut-welfare terrarium. That kind of career led inevitably to Camp Runamuck, where Menashi worked on immigration policies that seem to be getting harsher and less humane by the hour. From NBC News:
The U.S. will not grant temporary protected status to people from the Bahamas displaced by Hurricane Dorian, an administration official told NBC News. The status would allow Bahamians to work and live in the U.S. until it is deemed safe to return home. The same status is currently granted to over 300,000 people living in the U.S. from 10 countries, including the victims of Haiti’s 2010 earthquake.
They might have to purge the federal capital with fire when these guys are through with it.
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