Saturday, October 29, 2005

Things are looking promising...

This from Reuters
By Caren Bohan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush on Saturday was narrowing his choices of Supreme Court nominees to replace Harriet Miers as Republicans said the short list consisted of highly credentialed, solidly conservative judges.

Among the candidates most talked about were appeals court judges Michael Luttig and Samuel Alito. Bush, who is spending the weekend at his Camp David retreat, was expected to unveil his choice within days.

A source close to the selection process who spoke on condition of anonymity said avoiding a battle with Democrats, who have warned Bush about picking a right-wing activist, would not be the president's top priority.

"What we know from the Miers nomination is that people on all sides of the political spectrum wanted the highest quality, and that's what the president will deliver," the source said.

"I think it will be extremely difficult for Senate Democrats to oppose someone who is extraordinarily well qualified and who shares the president's judicial philosophy," the source added.

Conservatives are eager for a conservative in the mold of justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas to replace the retiring Sandra Day O'Connor, a moderate conservative and often pivotal swing vote on the divided court.

I like both of these possibilities. Both are said to be strict constructionists and in the "mold of Scalia and Thomas." Luttig is a good choice for victims rights, as he has been the victim of violent crime. His victim impact statement upon the murder of his father speaks volumes that he will not be one to unnecessarily cowtow to the "rights" of the criminal.

On the other hand, Alito looks like a winner, as well.

He reportedly shares Scalia's philosophy to a tee, to the point where he has been called "Scalito". Alito has written decision such as ACLU vs. Schundler, which held that it was not unconsitutional for a city to hold a religous display on public property.Also,
Alito was the sole dissenter in the 3rd circuit's decision on Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which struck down a Pennsylvania law requiring women to inform their husbands before getting an abortion.
The only thing that sticks in my craw regarding any of these two candidates is the fact that
Luttig, 51, a judge on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, worked as a clerk for Scalia when Scalia was an appeals court judge.

He helped in the effort to get Thomas and Supreme Court Justice David Souter-- both nominated to the high court by Bush's father -- confirmed by the Senate. Luttig also has worked in the Justice Department and private practice.
I would hope that it was a collective brain fart on the part of everyone involved in getting Souter approved. But at the same time, I guess Thomas' nomination made it a wash.

Either way, if either of these two are indeed nominated, I will need to take the "Coalition of the Illin'" banner, and put a "Coalition of the Willin' banner in its place.