Nelson Wavers on Nuclear Option

Sen. Bill Nelson (D-NE) has told The Hill that he is negotiating with Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS), chairman of the Rules Committee, to reach a “compromise” that would forfeit the right of senators to filibuster President Bush’s most radical judicial nominees.

Why would Nelson bend on such a fundamental issue? According to The Hill, Nelson thinks standing on principle has put him and others in “politically difficult positions”:

Nelson … suggested that a few Democrats in so-called red states might be relieved should the prospect of filibustering the president’s nominees be eliminated.

“I think that some of my colleagues have had some discomfort in voting against cloture but have felt that the nominees were sufficiently unwise choices to feel that was justified,” he said. “I’ve sensed some concern.”

Nelson said that one such colleague is Sen. Ken Salazar (D), who represents Colorado, a state that President Bush carried twice.

Someone should to tell Nelson that Salazar backed off his opposition to filibusters last month. On this vital issue, Nelson ought to forget the politics and follow Salazar’s lead.

Carpetbagger is also blogging on this.