Activist Judges – Conservative Style

During the Schiavo affair earlier this year, one phrase kept popping up over and over in wingnut circles: ‘œactivist judges’. What is an activist judge? One who tended to rule in a manner that the extremists on the right didn’™t like. It’™s that simple.

So, what does George Bush nominate for the Supreme [...]

/wp/

During the Schiavo affair earlier this year, one phrase kept popping up over and over in wingnut circles: ‘œactivist judges’. What is an activist judge? One who tended to rule in a manner that the extremists on the right didn’™t like. It’™s that simple.

So, what does George Bush nominate for the Supreme Court to replace Sandra Day O’™Connor? An activist judge of a conservative stripe, who may have just a tinge of East Coast moderate streak (well, as moderate as wingnuts get, anyway). It’™s certainly easy to read the ‘œactivist’ attribute into Samuel Alito’™s legal resume. Bush has done what many predicted in the wake of Harriet Meir’™s withdrawl – made a pick to, on the surface, appease the fundamentalist fringe.

Picking Alito isn’™t going to make women’™s groups happy for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that Alito would be replacing a woman on the bench. That argument isn’™t likely to go far, because John Roberts was initially slated to replace O’™Connor. I’™m not even sure that his dissent to Planned Parenthood v. Casey is all that far to the right of a rational view of the abortion issue, but it certainly gives a clue which way he might swing on a conservative court. And one of his writings, in a majority decision on the Circuit Court, clearly supported women’™s rights:

A majority opinion in Fatin v. INS, 12 F.3d 1233 (3d Cir. 1993), holding that an Iranian woman seeking asylum could establish that she had a well founded fear of persecution in Iran if she could show that compliance with that country’™s ‘œgender specific laws and repressive social norms,’ such as the requirement that women wear a veil in public, would be deeply abhorrent to her. Judge Alito also held that she could establish eligibility for asylum by showing that she would be persecuted because of gender, belief in feminism, or membership in a feminist group.

A quick read of some of his opinions reveals that he also appears to be a first amendement, pro-business type guy.

Hmmm. Pro-business, anti-workers rights. Forget all the other crap.

Yep. He’™s Bush’™s kind of guy, who might actually end up being a bit ‘œmoderate’ (and I use the term loosely) on social issues. That’™s probably the early line to take, but I’™m sure we’™ll be learning a lot more in the next few hours. Here’™s a few links:

Wikipedia – Samuel Alito
Supreme Court Nomination Blog
American Constitution Society Blog
Interesting views from American Progress

Monday, October 31st, 2005 by Richard Blair |
Category: Holy War

No Comments

No comments yet.

Leave a comment

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI