Friday, April 09, 2010

Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens Retiring

This seems to be a day for announcing retirements:

Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens announced Friday he will retire when the court wraps up its work for the summer break.

"Having concluded that it would be in the best interests of the Court to have my successor appointed and confirmed well in advance of the commencement of the Court's next term, I shall retire from regular active service as an Associate Justice, under the provisions of 28 U.S.C. 371 (b), effective the next day after the Court rises for the summer recess this year," Stevens wrote in a letter to President Barack Obama.

Stevens, who marks his 90th birthday this month, said in an interview published less than a week ago that he would "surely" retire while Obama was still in the White House.

As the leader of the Court's Left wing, it was obvious that Stevens wanted Obama to pick his successor, and with the looming midterms not looking too good for the Democrats I have no doubt that this resignation was timed to allow Obama a pick while the Democrats still have 59 votes in the Senate.

However,as Republican Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona reminded CNN, Republicans control 41 seats in the Senate, enough to stall the confirmation process, and you can't rule out a GOP filibuster of an Obama nominee to the Supreme Court.

Rest assured that Obama will go for broke and the most radical pick he can get away with.

Some likely front runners?

Elena Kagan: lessee...the ex-Dean of Harvard Law school is a career academic and the current Solicitor General. She's never served as a judge or even argued a case in front of an appellate court, so she has zero practical experience.

However, she's female, which checks one of Obama's boxes. And she does have the right political views. She called President Clinton's “don’t ask; don’t tell” policy “a profound wrong — a moral injustice of the first order,” which should give you a clue on how she'd vote on gay marriage. And she seems to have never heard of the Solomon Amendment, claiming that it somehow violates the First Amendment for the US to withhold funds from colleges that ban the military from recruiting on campus. That piece of legal reasoning was unanimously rejected by the entire Supreme Court.

Even better from Obama's point of view, she favors greatly enhanced presidential control over the Federal government, which is right up BOH's alley considering his unprecedented consolidation of power in the White House.

Diane Wood: She's now a federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit based in Chicago, and a senior lecturer at the U of Chicago Law school, the President and Bill Ayer's old stomping grounds. She and Obama are reportedly old pals who go back a long way.

Again, she's pretty far out there on the Left. Her particular pet hates appear to be Christians and anyone who doesn't favor unrestricted abortion on demand, so her nomination would please NARAL and Planned Parenthood. In one case, NOW v. Scheidler, she actually tried to apply the RICO statutes designed for mob prosecutions to stop pro-life groups from activists from engaging in lawful first amendment sanctioned protests. The Supreme Court reversed her, with even Lefty Justices Ginsburg and Breyer voting against her.

Judge Wood wanted to allow a publicly funded university to revoke the charter of the Christian Legal Society on campus because they refused to allow homosexuals to be members. She was overruled by the other judges on the panel.

Merrick B. Garland: Now an appellate court judge in DC, Garland is a long time, well connected Democrat who served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in the Clinton Administration and was a protege of none other than Bill Clinton's ex-Deputy Attorney General Jamie know, the one who built a wall between various US intelligence agencies to prevent them from sharing intel on the 9/11 hijackers. That ought to raise some hackles right there. Like Kagen, he's a former professor at Harvard Law school, where he taught anti-trust law.

He's probably the least radical of the three mentioned here, and he's also a white male, which could make him a dark horse (no pun intended).

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louielouie said...

no doubt hussein's nominee will be well versed in sharia.

B.Poster said...

Mr. Obama will get who he wants. No compromises with anyone are necessary. Yes Republicans do control 41 seats and yes they can fillibuster, however, I see two problems with that. 1.)It is not going to be very hard for the Democrats to pick off one or two Republicans and beat a filibuster attempt. 2.)In the unlikely event he fails here, he can use the reconciliation thingy or whatever used to push health care reform through.

Mr. Obama can get anyone on the Supreme Court he desires. He could get Noam Chomsky on the Supreme Court assuming Mr. Chomsky wanted the job. Mr. Obama can simply break the law if he wants to get whomever he wants in any position he wants. As we have learned with the health care debate, laws mean nothing to this man and nobody in the press or the government will hold him accountable.

Freedom Fighter said...

Ummm Poster...The reconciliation process only applies to passing legislation through both houses of Congress.

a) Presidential appointees (i.e. judgeships)are not covered.

b) Only the Senate votes to confirm
Supreme Court justices.


B.Poster said...

I actually was being somewhat sarcastic there. I didn't think the reconciliation applied to Supreme Court nominees, however, if Mr. Obama needs to he can change the laws so that it will work but, as I pointed out, I don't he needs to. It should not be that hard to pick off one or two Republicans to get whomever he wants.