Roger L. Simon

Where there's life, there's hope...

Everybody’s a comedian when it comes to the Senate Judiciary Hearings where nominee Roberts is evidently tying a gaggle of bloviating senators into knots. (Is gaggle the right word? They remind me of geese.) Logging in now is Dana Milbank with this amusing lede.

Efforts to get an answer out of John G. Roberts were going nowhere at yesterday’s Senate Judiciary Committee meeting, so Sen. Charles E. Schumer went Hollywood.

“Your failure to answer questions is confounding me,” the New York Democrat fumed at the nominee for chief justice. “It’s as if I asked you: ‘What kind of movies do you like? Tell me two or three good movies.’ And you say, ‘I like movies with good acting.’ Then I ask you if you like ‘Casablanca,’ and you respond by saying, ‘Lots of people like “Casablanca.” ‘ You tell me, ‘It’s widely settled that “Casablanca” is one of the great movies.’ ”

As the laughter at his expense subsided, the judge’s smile shifted toward a smirk. Chairman Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) moved to call a recess, but Roberts asked if he could reply to Schumer.

” ‘Dr. Zhivago’ and ‘North by Northwest,’ ” the nominee deadpanned. The crowd scored it another point for Roberts. Jane Roberts gave her husband a kiss. Schumer went outside to the cameras, where he observed, a bit wistfully, that Roberts “is a very, very smart man.”

Reason for my headline? Well, there’s hope because Chuck Schumer finally admitted someone on the other side of the aisle could be intelligent. This is indeed progress for humanity.