TO: JCN MEMBERS, CONSERVATIVE LEADERS AND ACTIVISTS
FROM: WENDY E. LONG&GARY MARX,
JUDICIAL CONFIRMATION NETWORK
DATE: May 5, 2009
RE: TOP OBAMA CANDIDATES FOR SUPREME COURT VACANCY
Reports in Washington today suggest that the Obama Administration and some in the U.S. Senate are looking to rush through confirmation of the new Supreme Court Justice to replace outgoing Justice David Souter.
While we don’t know for sure the veracity of these reports, Senator Hatch (who spoke with the President yesterday) ventured to guess that the White House might name a Supreme Court nominee within a week. And from what we have seen so far, Senate Judiciary Chairman Pat Leahy seems eager to ram through Obama judicial nominees without giving Senators a proper chance to evaluate the nominee’s record and assess whether she will be able to uphold her statutory judicial oath of office to dispense justice impartially, according to the law, instead of tilting the law based on her own personal views and feelings, as the President has said he wants.
While President Obama has said he intends to nominate a moderate or a pragmatist, not a liberal activist, it is advisable to take that statement with a grain of salt. Remember, he thinks that the current Supreme Court the majority of which is a liberal judicial activist Court is “right-wing” or “conservative.” If that is his frame of reference (“liberal judicial activist” equals “right-wing”), then his definition of “moderate” may be equally skewed.
Moreover, with the vetting record of this White House and its willingness to appoint to high government posts nominees who have cheated on their taxes and have other ethical problems, any rush to appoint a Supreme Court Justice with lightning speed is all the more unseemly. And it certainly violates the Obama promises of transparency and accountability. We need a fair, orderly process to educate Americans about the potential nominees that the Obama-Leahy machine seems determined to rush through the confirmation process.
Here are three women widely thought to be front-runners for this Supreme Court seat. They are not moderates. They are not pragmatists. They are hard-left liberal judicial activists.
Elena Kagan (Currently Obama Administration Solicitor General)
* 31 Senators voted against her for Solicitor General a little more than a month ago. She has a hard-left activist record in a variety of areas. As Dean of Harvard Law School, she kicked U.S. military recruiters off the Harvard Law campus at the height of the Iraq war because of her personal, passionate conviction that gays should be allowed to serve openly in the U.S. military, and her disdain for the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy enacted by a Democratic Congress and signed by President Clinton. Her legal argument that the government cannot withhold federal funds from universities who kick the military off campus was so flawed it was unanimously rejected by the Supreme Court.
* She has zero judicial experience; she has never been a judge, argued before the Supreme Court, or even argued a case in a Court of Appeals.
* Kagan stated in a law review article that efforts to regulate pornography “not only will fail, but also should fail.”
* She criticized laws to prevent taxpayer-funded clinics from performing abortions as well as the Supreme Court’s decision that such laws are permissible under the Constitution.
Sonia Sotomayor (Currently Judge on U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit)
* According to liberal legal commentator Jeffrey Rosen, lawyers and clerks who have worked with Sotomayor question her competence, saying that she’s “not that smart and kind of a bully on the bench,” and that there are concerns “about her command of technical legal details.”
* Sotomayor recently approved a city’s racial quota system and its decision based on their skin color – to deny 18 firefighters earned promotions. Even the liberal Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen and her own colleague, Judge Jose Cabranes, a Clinton appointee, expressed shock and disappointment at Sotomayor’s irresponsible attempt to reject the firefighters’ important legal claims without even fairly analyzing them in her opinion approving racial discrimination.
* Sotomayor said in a 2002 speech at Berkeley that she believes it is appropriate for a judge to consider their “experiences as women and people of color” in their decision-making, which she believes should “affect our decisions.”
Diane Wood (Currently Judge on U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit)
* Wood wrote an opinion applying RICO a statute designed for mob prosecutions to prevent pro-life activists from engaging in peaceful protests. The Supreme Court reversed her; even Justices Ginsburg and Justice Breyer agreed that Wood was wrong.
* Wood tried to block informed consent laws regarding abortion.
* She has consistently twisted the Constitution to deny the rights of religious people that the Constitution in fact was designed to protect. In one case, she would have allowed a public university to revoke the student organization charter of the Christian Legal Society because it declined to extend membership to homosexuals.