John Roberts’ nomination is on the floor this week, after being voted out of committee Thursday with a 13-5 recommendation.
All 55 Republicans will back Roberts, and a handful of Dems have announced their support:
Bill Nelson of Florida, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Tim Johnson of South Dakota, Max Baucus of Montana, Robert Byrd of West Virginia, Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico, Kent Conrad of North Dakota, Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, Herb Kohl of Wisconsin and Ken Salazar of Colorado.
Interestingly, all five red-state Democrats who are up for re-election next year (Bingaman, Byrd, Conrad and the Nelsons) have already announced for Roberts. Of the 21 Democrats who haven’t yet taken a position, 15 are from blue states, suggesting that an anti-Roberts majority of Democrats is a very likely outcome.
14 Dems have announced opposition:
Harry Reid of Nevada, Barbara Boxer of California, John Kerry of Massachusetts, Jon Corzine of New Jersey, Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, Barack Obama of Illinois, Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York, Evan Bayh of Indiana, Mark Dayton of Minnesota, Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, Joseph Biden of Delaware, Dianne Feinstein of California, Charles Schumer of New York and Dick Durbin of Illinois.
I’ve heard folks throwing around low- to mid-70s as the optimistic number Roberts could get.
Tim finds moderate/liberal Republicans Chafee and Snowe signaling that they’ll make trouble on the next nominee.
The Senate should vote on Roberts Thursday. After that, sources on the Hill are saying Bush will likely name the next nominee quickly, and the leadership will push for a vote by Thanksgiving.
As for the next nominee, Bush says he’s “mindful that diversity is one of the strengths of the country,” but K-Lo says cut the “no boys allowed” crap.