Tuesday, July 19, 2005

SCOTUS Watch: Official Announcement and Reaction

New thread, the president about to come into the White House and announce John Roberts as his nominee.

[Update: Bush calls this "one of the most consequential decisions a president makes ... the decisions of the Supreme Court affect every American ..."

"John Roberts has devoted his entire professional life to the cause of justice ... sound intellect ... and decency." Brief resume-recap. "Reputation as one of the best legal minds of his generation ..." Notes wide bipartisan support for Roberts' candidacy to the appeals court in 2001.

Notes that the nomination "came after a thorough and deliberative process," that he and staff consulted with more than seventy senators (sucks to be one of the other thirty). Bush says he met personally with "a number of" nominees, and was "deeply impressed" by Roberts. The president says Roberts has "experience, wisdom, fairness, and civility, profound respect for the rule of the law and the liberties granted to every citizen," that he will "strictly apply the rule of law, not legislate from the bench." "Judge Roberts has served his fellow citizens well, and he is prepared for even greater service."

Notes that he's spoken with senators, who "share my goal of a dignified confirmation process that is conducted with fairness and civility. I have full confidence that the Senate will rise to the occasion and act promptly on this nomination." -- 9:08 p.m.]

[Update: Roberts calls it "an honor, and very humbling." Says he is "grateful that the confidence the president has shown in nominating me," and thanks his family for their support. -- 9:10 p.m.]

[Update: Senator Leahy says the Senate must "do its duty" and consider this nomination, "take seriously our constitutional obligations on behalf of all Americans." "No one is entitled to a free pass to a lifetime appointment on the Supreme Court ... how the nominee views precedent, whether he views it as settled law ... all of these raise questions" etc. Praises O'Connor for "not pre-judging" cases. "I will work with Chairman Specter to have a fair hearing ..." -- 9:13 p.m.]

[Update: Schumer says Roberts has "appropriate legal temperament," but a short judicial tenure, says it's vital that Roberts "answer a wide variety of questions" during the nomination process. "The burden is on a nominee to the Supreme Court to prove that he is worthy, not on the Senate to prove that he is unworthy." Says he voted against Roberts for D.C. Circuit (on committee) because he refused to answer certain questions. Says "it's a whole new ballgame." "I hope Judge Roberts, understanding how important this nomination is, especially as he's replacing a swing justice, will decide to answer questions on his views." -- 9:16 p.m.]

[Update: SCNBlog is updating a running post with Roberts opinion synopses here. -- 9:19 p.m.]

[Update: (sort of). Just wanted to let everyone know we've shattered previous daily traffic records today. Thanks for stopping by, and please, come back again when I'm actually writing and not just passing bits along. -- 9:21 p.m.]

[Update: Kyl says Roberts will be "hard to oppose," he "suspects he'll be confirmed. Durbin says "the American people are entitled to answers" to questions asked of the nominee. -- 9:24 p.m.]

[Update: Durbin says senators have "a right - let me go further - an obligation, to find out where the nominee stands" on the issue of a right to privacy. Adds that Democrats are committed to a fair discussion in the Judiciary Committee. -- 9:27 p.m.]

[Update: I have to jump on the conventional wisdom bandwagon here and say that I think Roberts is a candidate who is probably going to be able to gain confirmation in the Senate without too much trouble. He is a traditional conservative who has not exhibited "activist" tendencies on the bench, and whose intellectual merits really are astounding. Someone passed along this piece from the Harvard Crimson as well, which takes a good look at Roberts. Of course, I will watch the confirmation hearings closely, and I continue to hope that things remain civil and honest throughout the upcoming debate. -- 9:44 p.m.]

[Update: Unless something big/crazy happens through the rest of tonight, I'm going to end the insta-updates for the evening; I'm exhausted, it's been a very long day. We have a nominee; we will now have a period of debate, deliberation and discussion. At this point, although I certainly don't agree with John Roberts on every issue, I can see much more about this nominee to recommend him rather than to oppose him. Judge Roberts is clearly a conservative - but he does not seem to me to be an activist zealot: this nomination could have been much worse. That's my very fast analysis after a very tiring day. I will have more tomorrow and in the days and weeks to come. -- 10:03 p.m.]


At 9:56 PM, Blogger "A Brown" said...

I agree with you that the CW is right on this one. The answering questions issue may matter. Two years ago, three Democrats on the Judiciary Committee voted against recommending Roberts because he would not answer questions. In light of the Bolton meltdown, some Democrats may have a heightened desire to see their questions answered. That said, the Republicans have the votes to confirm and defeat a filibuster if it came to that.


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