Main Question or Discussion Point
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He's not moderate at all, and he has nada, zip, zero experience as a judge at any level. Why would you assume he's a good choice for the highest judicial post in the land? I think the Dems should dig their heels in and fight this nomination on judicial experience alone; you don't put a Second Looey in charge of the Army.Astronuc said:I have actually heard some good things about Roberts, who clerked for Rehnquist a while back. Roberts is very much like Rehnquist and perhaps moderate enough to be acceptable to the Democrats.
I think the Senate Judiciary committee has to approve his nomination and send it to the whole Senate. If they approve by majority (not sure if its 51% or more), then he gets the appointment.loseyourname said:I can understand the rationale behind doing this. If Roberts is simply appointed to succeed O'Connor, then the court will open with only eight justices, and there would stand the possibility of an undecided case, a case that ends in a tie. By appointing him to replace Rehnquist, the court remains at nine justices, as O'Connor has promised to remain on until she is replaced. That said, can't Roberts replace Rehnquist without being appointed as Chief Justice? Does anyone know the specifics of how this process works?
"The fact that he's now been elevated to chief justice shouldn't slow us down at all," said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee that will hold confirmation hearings on the nominee.
Democrats, however, said bumping Roberts up to chief justice instead of having him replace retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor means tougher scrutiny of Rehnquist's former Supreme Court clerk.
Liberal groups are trying to drum up support to fight Roberts' ascension to chief justice anyway, after working weeks trying to get senators to oppose him as an associate justice.
"We must oppose his confirmation as chief justice even more strenuously because, in that post, he would have even greater power to shape the direction of our courts, our laws and our lives," said Debra Ness, president of the National Partnership for Women & Families.
Like Rehnquist, Roberts is deeply conservative. O'Connor had angered conservatives with her tie-breaking votes on contentious issues like abortion restrictions, campaign finance limits, discrimination laws and religion.
The Roberts-for-Rehnquist nomination would not affect the court's balance, but Bush could force an ideological shift to the right when he replaces O'Connor. O'Connor has offered to remain on the bench until her successor is named, and Bush called her Monday to say he would move quickly to find her replacement as well.
The president later praised Roberts as a man of fairness and integrity, a natural leader. He said the Senate was well along in the process of considering Roberts' qualifications and "they know his record and his fidelity to the law. I am confident that the Senate can complete hearings and confirm him as chief justice within a month."
There are striking similarities between the two Roberts and Rehnquist. Both were first in their class in law school, enjoyed reputations for brilliance and were known as good writers. As a young man, Roberts clerked for Rehnquist and the justice was one of many influences in Roberts' life and legal career.
Getting a new chief justice of Bush's choosing in place quickly avoids the scenario of having liberal Justice John Paul Stevens presiding over court sessions, leading private meetings of the justices and thereby influencing court deliberations. As the court's senior justice, Stevens would take over Rehnquist's administrative duties until a new chief is confirmed.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9215790/Roberts to face increased scrutiny at hearings
WASHINGTON - President Bush’s decision to nominate John Roberts as the nation’s 17th Supreme Court chief justice raises the stakes of the upcoming Senate confirmation hearings, with lawmakers now asked to pass judgment on a man who could lead the nation’s highest court for decades.
...“The fact that he’s now been elevated to chief justice shouldn’t slow us down at all,” said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee that will hold confirmation hearings on the nominee.
Democrats, however, said bumping Roberts up to chief justice instead of having him replace retiring Justice Sandra Day O’Connor means tougher scrutiny of Rehnquist’s former Supreme Court clerk.
...Liberal groups are trying to drum up support to fight Roberts’ ascension to chief justice....“We must oppose his confirmation as chief justice even more strenuously because, in that post, he would have even greater power to shape the direction of our courts, our laws and our lives,” said Debra Ness, president of the National Partnership for Women & Families.
The Roberts-for-Rehnquist nomination would not affect the court’s balance, but Bush could force an ideological shift to the right when he replaces O’Connor.
Why do I suspect the White House would be no more forthcoming in response to those questions than Roberts? The ultimate problem is that while the majority of Americans do not want abortion to be made illegal, they do want the court to become more conservative. The problem we face in this country is that we are going backwards as a people, to the times of the Puritans.McGyver said:If Domocrats, media, and organizations want more information about Judge Roberts - they should direct more of these questions at the Bush White House, i.e. what do you hope to achieve with Roberts as Supreme Court Justice (now Chief Justice).
Again and again, the White House has demonstrated that it is carrying out a narrowly define pre-determined agenda. In these regards, the White House choose Roberts because they KNOW that his rulings will be an extension of that agenda. What do they know that the public and the Senate committee will never learn?
Thus, the White House, Bush, and McClellan should be questioned further on its selection of Roberts, and their intentions! Roberts will say whatever he needs to say now in these hearings to be confirmed - and later can rule in opposite to those statements without recourse. The White House is particularly vulnerable now after Katrina, and could be pressured to answer more questions on Roberts. Similarly, they and the Republican party can be held accountable later should the Senate and public be misled on Roberts.
I agree. It's hard to find enough on Roberts to know what he'll be like. In light of past Bush decisions, I would want to know for myself if I were a Senator. Bush just hasn't shown much reason to trust his decisions.McGyver said:With President Bush's political appointment of Brown as FEMA director, and now Brown's inadequacy in managing the fed's response to hurricane Katrina - one must use more scrutiny of Bush appointments, now including Roberts.
For President Bush to insist that Roberts, who has limited experience as a judge, but more in political policy, is prepared to be Chief Justice over the Supreme Court - seems brazen and a bit reckless. His pre-Iraq war decisions could also be construed as reckless.
I personally, and many other Americans I'm sure would agree, are still trying to comprehend the Republican leadership's aggressive, invasive, and appearingly irrational efforts in the Terri Schiavo matter earlier this year. Perhaps that reactive exuberance would have been better placed in the fed's response to hurricane Katrina.
Burn me once ..... shame on you! Burn me twice .... shame on me!
Herein lies the problem with this president and his nomination process. The article continues -Four leading senators floated several names to Bush, but the president kept his own list to himself at a White House breakfast earlier Wednesday.
...The meeting was similar to one that Bush held in July, one week before he nominated Roberts to fill O’Connor’s shoes.
And thus the results--a nation ready to explode. Good job Bushie.“I have raised a certain cautionary signal,” Specter said, “but I believe the next nomination is going to be a great deal more contentious than the Roberts’ nomination. I say that because, bubbling just below the surface was a lot of frustration in the hearing that we just concluded.”
IMO Bush should be happy with Roberts, and obtain prior consensus on the nomination to replace O'Connor (as other president's have done). The Dems have a list of conservatives--not moderates--that they've been willing to support. So far Bush is being his usual "my way or the highway" self. If he repeats his tactics, there will be a filibuster. It is going to be one heck of a fight, and I for one will support the Dems 100%. And if so, he is to blame. I saw a bumper sticker today: "No More Bush*t I agree -- I'm sick of his divisiveness.McGyver said:It seemed pretty clear that Roberts was going to be nominated by the Senate. What remains - is Bush's next move - and selection.
The prevailing moderate voice in the Senate, made up of moderate Republicans and most Democrats, now have the opportunity to mount their concerns over a possible replacement for Justice O'Connor, whom most would expect would be another conservative - thus transforming the historically moderate Court to a "Conservative" Supreme Court. With the poor response to Hurricane Katrina still biting at the Bush White House, moderates and liberals could, if done intelligently, extract sizable leverage and influence over Bush's next nomineee. Clearly, the Bush White House is exposed ... and is bleeding! Hopefully, reasonable minds will prevail.