In case anyone is wondering why judicial appointments are necessary, read this decision in Kelo v City of New London. The division was 5-4, with only Justices O'Connor, Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas dissenting. O'Connor and Thomas both wrote dissenting opinions. Kennedy and Stevens wrote the majority opinions. Souter was appointed by Bush 41, but has been decidedly liberal in his opinions. Only Scalia, Thomas, and Rehnquist have held to original construction of the Constitution. O'Connor is often the swing vote. Powerline has more.
Powerline also has the lowdown on another attempt by the minority party to determine not only who is approved, but who is nominated.
Senator Durbin officially compares our military treatment of the unlawful combatants at Guantanamo with Pol Pot, the Nazis and the Soviets, never retracts his statement, in spite of the obvious fallacy (over 30 million murdered by said regimes - not one death at Guantanamo, etc.), and the Republican leadership accepts his apology. Trent Lott made an offhand remark at a birthday party and lost the Senate Majority Leader position. Why is Durbin still the party whip?