Spinsanity has a strange item wherein they criticize various pundits and Presidential candidates for making ad hominem attacks on John Ashcroft. Tarring John Ashcroft is bad if you’re trying to launch a substantive debate about how civil rights are respected by our government, but it’s good if you’re trying to score points against the Bush administration, and that’s the objective here. When Bush nominated Ashcroft for the Attorney General spot, he knew that Ashcroft would draw exactly this sort of fire — the flip side is that religious conservatives loved him at the time (I don’t know if they still do). Many Democrats wanted to block his nomination because he was (and is) so odious, but Russ Feingold said that Bush should get the cabinet he desires, and then should be held to account for it when the time comes. The time has come. Ashcroft has been as bad as everyone said he’d be, and now we get to beat the Bush administration over the head with it. That’s politics.