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Samuel DUBYA Alito

After hearing Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito and his political cohorts talk about his previous statements with reference to judicial actions, I decided to dub him with a middle name of DUBYA. The real Dubya says one thing to sell his programs and does something entirely different in practice. Alito and his cronies do it the reverse way. Alito has made all kinds of statements in past years indicating the he is a conservative in the mold of Scalia. Now, he and those pushing his nomination say Alito did not truly believe what he had said. He was only doing his job or applying for a job.

Just like Dubya. When campaigning, he said he preferred conservative justices like Scalia. So Bush chose Alito, obviously because Alito is a conservative and wants to get rid of Roe v. Wade.

But hold on. The administration is shouting that Alito is not a conservative, but a judge. A judge is neither conservative or liberal; he should be a judge.

Alito has made many statements that he is against Roe and that it should be overturned. In a recommendation to the solicitor general on filing a friend-of-court brief, Alito, in 1985, said that the government

"should make clear that we disagree with Roe v. Wade and would welcome the opportunity to brief the issue of whether, and if so to what extent, that decision should be overruled."

As he has said before, Alito will no doubt tell us that he didn't mean it. He was working for a conservative president so he gave a conservative opinion. Isn't this what all lawyers do?

Alito is with Dubya on overturning Roe and also on domestic surveillance. Today, the Washington Post said:

"Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito defended the right of government officials to order domestic wiretaps when he worked for the Reagan Justice Department, documents released Friday show."

What will DUBYA Alito say to this?

Evidently, Alito agrees with Bush on many things, among them overruling Roe, the legitimacy of domestic wiretaps, and that the power of the president is greater than the rule of law.

Posted by Paul Siegel at December 23, 2005 5:07 PM
Comments
Comment #106909

Name just one Democrat President that nominate a Supreme Court Justice that didn’t agree with him politicaly. The fact is ALL Presidents in my lifetime have nominated people that agree with them. This doesn’t make it right. But it’s part of the DC system.
What we need insted of Justices that agree with the whoever’s President at the time their nominated, is justices that will interpit the Consitiution and NOT make law.
Law making is the job of Congress. And even though they’re doing a lousy job of it, the Supreme Court has been over steping it’s Consitiutional athourity for the last 50 years by making law insted of interpiting it.

Posted by: Ron Brown at December 23, 2005 6:27 PM
Comment #106923

“This doesn’t make it right, but it’s part of the DC system”??????
Is THAT an excuse for this kind of political crapola?? What this country needs right now is a very BIG dose of RIGHT, and a re-ordering of the “system” (Hopefully we will see some of that this year with the Abramoff thing), not apologistics. As a third of the government system, the judges are part of the entire law-making process, and should be held to account on that. All Bush seems to care about in his “choices” is overturning RvW so he can look like a hero to the radical right religious nutcakes he obviously takes his orders from.

Posted by: capnmike at December 23, 2005 8:06 PM
Comment #106924

Exactly Mr. Brown
The last court even had the gall to intervene in a presidential election! Alito promises to be extremely active and should be opposed by all who believe as we do.

Posted by: Bill at December 23, 2005 8:07 PM
Comment #106931

Paul,
I applaud what you have written, as well as the others who have responded. I just want to add my two-cents. I’m sure somehow, someway, someone will attempt to give an excuse for accepting this type of behavior.

After all, if the President doesn’t have to obey the law (see Iraqi War, Terrorism, wire-tapping,i.e.) why should we care whether the next Justice will obey the law - or even encourage others to do so.

Roe vs Wade is over. Period. It should not and does not need to be discussed again. The discussion was held in the 60’s and ‘70’s. It is time to move forward. The court needs to up-hold laws, not change or reverse itself just because some other party is now in charge.

ALL justices should,need and in my opinion obligated to be as non-partisan as possible. Once they are on the High Court, while they are humans and have a right to their own opinions, their opinions are no longer relevant. Rather they are supposedly supposed to decide cases based on the current law and the U.S. Constitution.

Linda H.

Posted by: Linda H. at December 23, 2005 8:37 PM
Comment #106938

capnmike

“This doesn’t make it right, but it’s part of the DC system”??????
Is THAT an excuse for this kind of political crapola??

No that’s not an excuse. It’s just fact. There is NO excuse for the kind these of actions.
Judges ARE NOT part of the law making process. They ONLY interpit law according to the Constitution. The problem is that they DO make law. And DON”T interpit it.

Posted by: Ron Brown at December 23, 2005 9:23 PM
Comment #107058


Regarding the idea that the courts are creating the law, not interpreting it — it seems to me that when the Supreme Court recognizes a right, for example, to privacy, or an abortion, or what have you, this is merely interpretation based on the 9th amendment to the bill of rights, which basically says that nothing in this document should be taken as an exhaustive list of rights — that there exist other rights that we didn’t get around to listing here. Personally, I approve of pretty much any interpretation that increases the protected rights of individuals, even those i may not personally agree with; however, i find it pretty difficult to find similar justification for behavior such as the court’s infamous appointment in 2000.

Jim

Posted by: jcollis at December 24, 2005 8:37 AM
Comment #107097

Paul: “Alito has made all kinds of statements in past years indicating the he is a conservative in the mold of Scalia”

George W. Bush: “I will appoint strict contructionists in the mold of Scalia and Thomas.”

So Bush is keeping is campaign promise. Good for him! He promised those who voted for him a justice in the mold of Scalia and Thomas. Nominating someone who wasnt in that mold would have been a breach of his word to the voters. He broke that word by first nominating Miers, but now has rectified it by actually sticking to what he promised. There is no outrage or story here- Clinton nominated strong liberals like Ginsburg. Bush is nominating strong conservatives like Roberts and Alito. Elections have consequences.

Posted by: Misha Tseytlin at December 24, 2005 11:16 AM
Comment #107106

I kinda think that Alito just might supprise both his supporters and his critics. He might not be as conservitive as most on both sides seem to think.
I might be wrong. But only time will tell.

Posted by: Ron Brown at December 24, 2005 11:48 AM
Comment #107320

Most of this sounds like a bunch of third graders repeating some of the junk they hear from parents too stupid to realize how stupid they are……
fredc

Posted by: FredC at December 25, 2005 10:11 AM
Comment #107372

fredc,
would you care to give some examples of what you consider studid and expound the subject with your inifinite wisdom?

Posted by: ec at December 25, 2005 2:46 PM
Comment #107602

While I disagree with how fredc presented his opinion I am inclined to agree with his premise. Too many people listen to the “talking heads” and repeat their mantra without reading a single brief or opinion from SCOTUS. How can one have an intelligent opinion under those circumstances? There are several myths being repeated in this blog that need to be challenged. Here are some examples…

Myth 1) All presidents in my lifetime have nominated SC Justices who agree with them.

This is not true of anyone older than 14. After all Bush 1 nominated Souter didn’t he? Presidents Regan, Ford and Eisenhower also leap immediately to mind as presidents who nominated justices with different political philosophies than their own.


Myth 2) The SC has been exceeding its constitutional authority for the past 50 years by “making” law and not “interpreting” it.


Please give me 5 examples (only one from each decade.) Include the case, what constitutional issues were in question, what the constitution says on the issue, how the SC ruled, how that is “making law” and not “interpreting” it and how you think the SC should have ruled. Until then…

BTW, republican presidents nominated seven of the nine justices on this “activist” court.

Myth 3) Judges are not part of the law making process.

Please read Marbury v. Madison and then tell me again how judges are not part of the law making process.

Myth 4) The Ninth Amendment supports the idea that there is a constitutional right to privacy.

It doesn’t. It is useful only in refuting the position that the constitution does not contain a right to privacy. However, it offers no indication that privacy is a constitutionally protected right. To find where privacy exists one must look to other parts of the constitution. If you’re interested in where and how SCOTUS finds a right to privacy read Griswold v. Connecticut, Roe v. Wade and Lawrence v. Texas.

If Chief Justice Roberts is to be believed, and I think he should be, every current SC Justice has acknowledged and supported a constitutional right to privacy. I would ask anyone who believe the talking heads who claim privacy is somehow an invention of a liberal activist court…just what do you think the founding fathers meant when referring to the concepts of “freedom” and “liberty” if not the right to be left alone by their government? Isn’t that the essence of privacy?

Myth 5) Because Justice Ginsburg worked for the ACLU she must be some ultra liberal activist. (To be fair the reference to Justice Ginsburg in this blog didn’t say that, but it seems to be a popular misconception.)

She’s not. I have never seen or heard anyone point to a single specific example of Justice Ginsburg abusing her authority through judicial activism. If there are some specific issues anyone has with Justice Ginsburg lets hear it. BTW, she is not even the most liberal Clinton nominee to SCOTUS. She won nomination only because Republican Senator Orrin Hatch suggested her to President Clinton as a fair and impartial jurist. She is no more than the third most “liberal” justice.

Please read SC opinions that you think are wrong or misguided or activist before criticizing them. At least then you’ll know what you’re talking about. These are nine honest hard working Americans who are faithfully performing a thankless job. No matter how they rule one segment of the population is unhappy. The justices are easy targets for anyone who has an opinion and no knowledge of the facts of any particular case. Remember, its not necessarily judicial activism just because you (or some “talking head) disagree with the ruling.

Justices Scalia and Breyer have each written a book to explain their approach to interpreting the constitution. Read them to understand their approach so you’ll know what you are talking about when you want to criticize their rulings. To think there is one correct way to interpret the constitution is the height of arrogance.

And somebody please tell me just what exactly is “judicial activism” and give me examples so I can recognize it when I see it. It seem to me that most people think “judicial activism” is when the SC issues a ruling that they disagrees with, but I could be wrong.

While I’m at it let me give an opinion on the topic that this blog started out exploring, Judge Alito. There does seem to be some inconsistency between what Judge Alito says in 2005 as a nominee to SCOTUS and his earlier writings. He has some explaining to do. If he thinks Roe should be overturned or the AG should have broad immunity to order domestic wiretaps or affirmative action has gone too far or whatever else, that’s all okay. Just let us know in the confirmation hearings so we’ll know who the senate will be voting on when it comes to the floor. We deserve an honest open nominee and a justice who will faithfully interpret our constitution not an activist with an agenda. As of today the jury is out on Alito. (No pun intended.) I only hope Judge Alito will prove himself to be a nominee of the quality and character of Chief Justice Roberts. I sincerely feel that Chief Justice Roberts is an outstanding choice for SCOTUS and way more than we had a right to expect from a president as intellectually and morally challenged as this one.

Posted by: RMD at December 26, 2005 5:37 PM
Comment #107744

Could I add a little mischief here?… SCOTUS seems to demand the exercise of enlightened individuals, and enlightment is an inherently liberal trait.
How else can you explain the difficulties conservatives have with getting the ‘right’ justices into place?

Posted by: Jon at December 26, 2005 11:57 PM
Comment #107752

Good comment by the way RMD. You’ve got it completely right IMO.

Posted by: Jon at December 27, 2005 12:10 AM
Comment #111525

If Bush & Alito are stict constructionists, how could either defend warrantless wiretaps? Seems a strict constructionist would have to “strictly” interpret the 4th amendment of the Constitution. The Constitution is now “frozen in time” with no exceptions, please.

Posted by: Elaine Hughes at January 9, 2006 5:02 PM
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