One motion picture holds the key to understanding the success (so far) of Judge Alito's nomination to the Supreme Court. I'm not talking about Advise and Consent or The Seduction of Joe Tynan. No, the answer lies in Pooh's Heffalump Movie.
For those without a three-year-old at home, let me explain the plot. Winnie-the-Pooh and friends discover signs of a heffalump in their part of Hundred Acre Wood. When Roo asks them what a heffalump is, they explain (in song) that it's an enormous monster with spikes and claws. They go off to capture the dreaded beast, but it's Roo who finds him -- and learns that he bears no resemblance to the description and is actually quite nice. After some plot twists, the others make the same discovery.
Judge Alito is a heffalump. Some of the folks in the Hundred Member Chamber tried to make him out as a fiery menace, but his testimony deflated the image. As Dahlia Lithwick points out in Slate, Senate Democrats could have scored serious points by debating him on the merits of originalism. Instead, they went after him personally and ended up looking as silly as Rabbit and Tigger.
So if he wins confirmation, we should all refer to him by the heffalump's nickname. All hail Justice Lumpy!