A story today in the New York Times reports that "blacks see bias in delay on Scalia successor."

Well, that didn't take long.

What is distressing (and inexcusable) is that the New York Times didn't quote a single source saying that, no, opposition to another Obama nominee on the Supreme Court is not based on race but on legal philosophy.

We were treated to paragraphs such as this:

After years of watching political opponents question the president’s birthplace and his faith, and hearing a member of Congress shout “You lie!” at him from the House floor, some African-Americans saw the move by Senate Republicans as another attempt to deny the legitimacy of the country’s first black president. And they call it increasingly infuriating after Mr. Obama has spent seven years in the White House and won two resounding election victories.

I realize that the story is on a phenomenon–blacks see bias–but there should have been at least one quote questioning the legitimacy of the all-purpose response to any opposition to the president's actions and philosophy.

In another instance of special pleading, the newspaper notes quite accurately that several GOP Senate seats could be affected by blocking an Obama nominee. Here is the interesting section:

It’s impossible to know whether these considerations will be enough to persuade some of the vulnerable senators to support Mr. Obama, either in hopes of casting themselves as moderates or to insulate themselves from the culture war issues that might harm them in moderate areas. Already, two of the five have come out against any Obama nominee.

Ron Johnson, the Wisconsin senator, is one of the two. This is not especially surprising: He was the fifth-most conservative member of the Senate in the last congress, according to DW-Nominate, which scores members on their ideology based on their voting record. Mr. Johnson has trailed his Democratic opponent, the former senator Russ Feingold, in every survey that has been conducted so far this cycle.

Somewhat more surprising is Kelly Ayotte, a New Hampshire senator who has drawn a strong challenge from the state’s Democratic governor, Maggie Hassan. She has a less reliably conservative voting record than Mr. Johnson, but her growing national profile — she’s considered a plausible vice-presidential pick — might push her toward a more conservative stance.

There is a tone of pulling for the other vulnerable Republicans to wake up and get on the Obama nominee bandwagon–and not a hint of respect for two people in tough races who have nevertheless taken a principled stand.