It's pretty clear that the Democrats are rolling out Phase 2 of their strategy to oppose the nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Court.

"The question is: Who is John Roberts? What does he really believe?" said Theodore M. Shaw, director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, during an appearance at the National Urban League convention here yesterday. "What we're finding out is troubling. I've moved from a position of neutrality to being deeply disturbed."

Phase 1 was to appear neutral and open-minded. Phase 2 is to act as if "surprising" "revelations" have forced the Democrats' initial neutrality to change into opposition. That way, Democrats can appear to have been open-minded initially and only reluctantly convinced that the nominee is a "deeply committed ideologue" by weight of the "evidence" they've "discovered". I use all the scare-quotes to illustrate that all this information has been known about Judge Roberts for years and years, but since it's new to the public the lawmakers have to act as if its new to them, too, so they can attempt to bring the public along for the ride.

Phase 3 will be the typical, expected rabid opposition to a nominee they hope to have wounded with their own fake reluctant transition from neutral to hostile.



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