President Barack Obama’s choice to lead the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division was wrongly blocked by bipartisan opposition in the U.S. Senate Wednesday.
The vote against advancing toward confirmation was 47-52, shy of the majority needed under new procedures Democrats put in place late last year to overcome Republican stalling tactics.
However in this case Democratic desertions including Senator Bob Casey played a decisive role in the outcome. Casey and seven other Democratic senators joined all 44 Republicans including Sen. Pat Toomey in preventing a final vote.
The dissenting Senate vote should dismay those seeking fairness.
In this April 29, 2009 file photo Debo Adegbile, then an attorney with the Legal Defense and Educational Fund of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People speaks outside the Supreme Court in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)
Adegbile’s nomination was defeated not because he was unqualified for the job, but because of politics.