Good news, everyone!

The Senate Judiciary Committee today endorsed Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel nominee Dawn Johnsen along a party-line vote after a tense debate over her views.

The panel voted to report Johnsen out of committee by a 12-7 vote. “I have to admit that [my] decision was not even a close call,” Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said today at the panel’s business meeting before he voted against her.

Surely her floor vote must only be a few months away now!

But first Max Baucus must lead a small taskforce of Republicans and conservadems to decide which constitutional principles Ms. Johnsen will agree to sacrifice in exchange for Olympia Snowe’s promise to briefly sort-of look like she might think about voting yes.