Friday, July 01, 2005


More reactions to the Supreme Court vacancy

Alliance Defense Fund President Alan Sears: "Justice O'Connor leaves a mixed legacy with regard to religious freedom, the sanctity of life, marriage, and the family. At times, we were pleased with her rulings, such as in the 1995 Rosenberger decision, the first big Supreme Court victory ADF backed, which led to many legal dominoes falling with regard to equal access. But she became a major proponent of international law, rewrote the Constitution by finding a 'right' for sodomy, and allowed the nightmare of abortion to continue in the Planned Parenthood v. Casey and Stenberg v. Carhart decisions."

Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice: "Reproductive rights and religious liberty are basic Constitutional rights. As is well known, people have varying views about abortion, views that are often strongly held... We urge the nation's leaders to avoid a confrontation over this deeply private issue and refuse to have a litmus test on abortion or any other single issue. We simply ask that the next Supreme Court Justice be a person who will uphold our fundamental Constitutional rights and is distinguished by a record of fairness and integrity, respect for both legal traditions and contemporary needs, and the ability to weigh competing considerations." So, in putting all of that together, 1) killing babies is a constitutional right, 2) but we aren't using abortion as a litmus test, 3) however, the next justice must uphold our constitutional rights. Say what? Isn't that the definition of a litmus test on abortion? Sounds like the RCRC is taking the high road - and the low road - all at the same time.

The ACLU: "The ACLU is preparing to hold a board meeting in the coming weeks to decide whether to oppose the Bush administration's nominee. As a matter of policy, the ACLU will only oppose nominees to the Supreme Court that are fundamentally hostile to civil liberties and will do so upon a vote of the board of directors. The national board of the ACLU has voted to oppose only two nominees in its history: Justice William Rehnquist and former solicitor general and law professor Robert Bork." Anyone willing to bet on the ACLU's opposition? I didn't think so...

ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow: "President Bush has been very consistent in his view of judicial nominees. He believes in nominating people who understand and interpret the constitution, not legislate from the bench. That is exactly what we expect President Bush to do now - put forth a nominee for the high court who will embrace the constitution, not re-write it."

Concerned Women for America Chief Counsel Jan LaRue: "The President has the historic opportunity to keep faith with the promise he has repeated numerous times, which is to name justices who are like Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas. The Democrats have shown that their filibusters and condemnations of the President's circuit court nominees were baseless. They will threaten more of the same unless he names a clone of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, for example."

NOW: "These are the faces of women who died because they could not obtain safe and legal abortions. If Roe v. Wade is overturned, these pictures could include your daughter, sister, mother, best friend, granddaughter... Don't let George W. Bush and the U.S. Senate put another anti-abortion justice on the Supreme Court." More fear-mongering by the liberal Left. You're goina lot hear alot of this coming up. The truth is (as Jonathan Turley and C. Boyden Gray have pointed out) that Roe can't be overturned by replacing O'Connor. You're not going to hear that from the liberals, though, because to suggest otherwise would mean having to - gasp! - focus on a nominee's qualifications.

Vision America President Rick Scarborough: "The president has a God-given opportunity to change the balance on Supreme Court. On issue after issue -- abortion, sodomy, public display of The Ten Commandments -- O'Connor has sided with the court's liberal bloc. Time and again, Justice O'Connor and her colleagues have used the Constitution as an excuse to force weird social experiments on the nation... Did Bill Clinton consult with conservatives before he appointed ACLU lawyer Ruth Bader Ginsburg to the Supreme Court? It's hard to imagine a nominee more outside the mainstream than Ginsburg. But Clinton exercised his prerogative to nominate a justice who shared his judicial philosophy. Bush has just as much right to put a conservative on the bench."

Former Professor of Constitutional Law at West Point, Federal Prosecutor, and Current U.S. Senate candidate Ed Bryant: "Justice O'Connor's opinions throughout her historic service on the Supreme Court made her one of the most important judicial voices of our times, and her resignation leaves a big vacancy on the highest court in the land. However, despite the importance of confirming qualified judges who will honor the Constitution in their rulings, the Democrat minority in the United States Senate has blocked the confirmation of well-qualified nominees to the lower federal courts, and I fear a continuation of their partisan tactics will impede the functioning of the Supreme Court when it opens its session in October. With the issue of a Supreme Court vacancy before the nation, we must ensure that our next Supreme Court Justice be one who we can count on to honor the Constitution in his or her opinions and won't legislate from the bench. The Supreme Court ended its session this week with a number of controversial rulings on property rights and on religious freedom. To ensure that the Supreme Court begins its next session with a new Justice in place, I urge all senators to honor their constitutional responsibilities and provide an up-or-down vote on whoever President Bush nominates to follow Justice O'Connor." (In the interest of fairness, neither Bob Corker nor Van Hilleary released an e-mail statement or posted anything on their websites about the importance of choosing O'Connor's replacement or her long service in the Supreme Court.)

Orin Kerr of the Volokh Conspiracy: "We're likely to hear a lot about the future of Roe v. Wade in coming weeks and months. The common wisdom, assuming no shifts in votes from past cases, is that the 8 remaining Justices include 5 votes for Roe (RBG, SGB, DHS, JPS, AMK) and 3 against (AS, CT, WHR). On the constitutionality of partial-birth abortion bans, the common wisdom is that the 8 remaining Justices split 4 to 4, with Justice Kennedy switching as seen by his vote in Stenberg v. Carhart."

If you want more reactions, take a trip over to No Silence Here, where Michael Silence has been rounding up responses like a true cowboy all day.

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