Predictably, CNN has an article promoting the Democrats' point of view on blue slips, including quotes from an outraged Senator Franken.
Chairman Grassley continues to exhibit leadership by maintaining the proper respect for bipartisan Senate traditions such as the blue slip while standing up to the unprecedented Democrat obstruction:
First, I’ve said repeatedly that I’m maintaining the blue slip courtesy. I’m keeping the policy that the vast majority of my predecessors had. A negative or unreturned blue slip will not necessarily prevent a hearing unless the White House failed to consult with home-state senators. This policy comes directly from a long line of practice including Chairman Joe Biden’s letter to President George H.W. Bush in 1989.
Second, he went directly after some of Senator Franken’s criticisms which ignored the balance on blue slips that Chairman Grassley is striking for circuit judges, who cover many states, and district judges, who cover one:
It’s worth mentioning that my Des Moines Register op-ed—which Senator Franken brought up yesterday—concerned two district court nominees. Nothing in the editorial suggests I planned to strictly require two positive blue slips from home-state senators for circuit court nominees.
In a fight between Chairman Grassley and Senator Franken, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell states that Chairman Grassley, not Senator Franken, is on the side of the angels over the 8th Circuit nominee Justice David Stras:
In this case, the junior Senator from Minnesota acknowledges that it is ‘undeniably true’ that Justice Stras is a ‘committed public servant whose tenure as a professor at the University of Minnesota underscores just how much he cares about the law.’ Yet our colleague objects to the committee even considering his nomination.
Why does he want to block a widely respected and accomplished state Supreme Court justice from his own state whom his constituents support? Because our colleague doesn’t agree with the United States Supreme Court Justices whom the nominee admires, one of whom the nominee happened to clerk for. I applaud Chairman Grassley for not allowing the blue slip courtesy to be abused in this fashion, and I look forward to learning more about Justice Stras’s views from today’s hearingWe join with Leader McConnell in thanking Chairman Grassley for his leadership on the blue slip and confirmation processes. Senator Franken's actions are yet another reason that he should seriously consider resigning from the Senate.