Thursday, November 03, 2005


Slate magazine's Dahlia Lithwick thinks she has President Bush, conservatives and Judge Alito all figured out. She offers weak reasons why Bush resorted to Alito after Miers withdrew and misrepresents what kind of justice Alito would be based on cases that came before him on a circuit court.

Only Lithwick could argue that the replacement of one nominee with questionable credentials necessary for the highest court in the land with a nominee who has been a federal judge for fifteen years is a "pander." The point is that president Bush probably pandered to his conservative base with a replacement for Justice O'Connor but that pander was actually Miers and not Alito. An argument could made that the Miers was a "pander" pick because the White House argued that Miers was picked because she was a woman and sent thinly veiled messages that Miers would choose to overturn Roe v. Wade. In an amazing twist that shocked Washington, conservatives rose up in anger because they didn't want to be pandered. Patronizing pander politics might work for the Democrats but conservatives who sincerely care about the future role of the Supreme Court wanted Bush to pick the best available candidate regardless of gender, color or religious affiliation. Alito's curriculum vitae marks him as an ideal candidate for the Supreme Court. His role as a prosecutor, experience in the Justice Department and wrangling with constitutional issues for the last fifteen years indicates that the man is fit for the supreme court, politics notwithstanding.

As for Alito's decisions as a judge, Lithwick plays a cute game distorting his opinions.

You'll hear a lot about some of Alito's other decisions in the coming days, including his vote to limit Congress' power to ban even machine-gun possession, and his ruling that broadened police search powers to include the right to strip-search a drug dealer's wife and 10-year-old daughter—although they were not mentioned in the search warrant. He upheld a Christmas display against an Establishment Clause challenge.

What you don't see in Lithwick's piece is the word, "constitutional." Lithwick does not inform her readers that Alito felt that, for example, Congress did not have the power under the constitution's commerce clause in order to regulate machine gun sales. Alito's personal feelings on isssues is another matter.

Finally, Lithwick assumes that Congress has unrestrained power to do whatever it wants.

Best of all for Bush's base, Alito is the kind of "restrained" jurist who isn't above striking down acts of Congress whenever they offend him.

Liberals have advanced the curious argument that their version of judicial activism occurs any time that a judge strikes down a law passed by Congress. That view of "activism" is laughable when one must remember that the constitution spells out what powers Congress has. Therefore, it is incumbent upon judges to interpret a law according to whether or not Congress was eplicitly allowed to pass such a law.

Update: For excellent analysis check out Eugene Volokh here and aqui.

Trick and Treat - Sammy Alito is the whole bag of goodies. By Dahlia Lithwick



It's sad that Democrats turned the memorial service for Paul Wellstone into a shameless political rally. It's disgusting that they did the same for Rosa Parks' funeral service

The funeral for civil rights hero Rosa Parks was turned into a forum for opportunistic demagogues to take advantage of her courageous and incredible act of defiance. The funeral lasted for seven (7!) hours. One of those who contributed to the long service and tried to score political points at the funeral of an American icon was former president, Bill Clinton.

Does anyone believe this story he told to a rapt audience?:

[USA Today] The church erupted in cheers when former president Bill Clinton arrived shortly before the service began. He recalled that when Parks was arrested, he was 9 years old and regularly rode up front in segregated buses in Arkansas. Clinton said the news that a black woman had refused to give up her seat in the back of the bus gave him a new opportunity: He and two friends decided to start sitting in back, too.

I would love it if someone could say whether or not this story appeared in his book, "My Life". After all, his autobiography is longer than the Bible, maybe he snuck this story in there too.

Update: I perused through Clinton's tome, "My Life" in the bookstore. Not only was there no mention of how he went to the back of the bus as a 9 year old but Rosa Parks is not even mentioned in the entire book. (Check the index, there is no "Parks, Rosa" in all 9,000 pages). A story like the one Clinton told at her funeral would be an empowering, searing experience that no one would ever forget. If Rosa Parks' famous act was inspiring for Bill Clinton, as both a child and a politician, then how could he fail to mention her and what he did in response to her heroic act in his book? I think we all know the answer. My conclusion is that Bill Clinton lied in front of both the mourners and Rosa Parks, as she lay in state in front of him, so he could show the world that he is as heroic as Mrs Parks was. Despicable, disgusting and sad.



Congratulations to Week 8 winner, Jack Legacy of Jack Legacy of Major League Texas Hold 'Em.com.

Detroit 1½ MINNESOTA
San Diego 5 NY JETS
CLEVELAND 3 Tennesse
KANSAS CITY 4½ Oakland
Cincinnati 3 BALTIMORE
TAMPA BAY 1 Carolina
Atlanta 2½ MIAMI
Seattle 4½ ARIZONA
Pittsburgh 6 GREEN BAY
Philadelphia 1 WASHINGTON

Indianapolis 3 NEW ENGLAND 46

(8)NOTREDAME 8 Tennessee
(10)PENN STATE 9 (14)Wisconsin
(23)California 1½ (15)OREGON
(16)TEXAS TECH 14 Texas A&M
(3)VIRGINIA TECH 4½ (5)Miami Fl
(25)COLORADO 11½ Missouri

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Send your picks via email. If you have a blog, please give me your URL.

Major League Texas Hold 'Em: 13
Quita: 10
Gil M.: 10
SixHertz House of Pain: 9
Uptown Girl: 9
T. Galvin: 8
GOP and the City: 8
RightVoices.com: 8

Uptown Girl: 83
SixHertz House of Pain: 78
Quita: 76
T. Galvin: 75
GOP and the City: 73
Gil M.: 69
RightVoices.com: 56
Major League Texas Hold 'Em: 42


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