Judges & Double Standards

Article excerpt

ITEM: Peter Jennings, on ABC's "World News Tonight on January 16, said, "President Bush has unilaterally appointed a controversial judge to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Democrats are very angry that Mr. Bush installed Charles Pickering. He's used what's called a recess appointment that will last until the next Congress takes office, made when Congress was not in session. Democrats accuse Pickering of opposing civil rights and bringing a conservative agenda to the bench. Senator Kennedy said for the Democrats today, 'the President's appointment serves only to emphasize again this administration's shameful opposition to civil rights.'"

BETWEEN THE LINES: The Democrats' hypocrisy and double standards concerning Judge Pickering are astounding. Pickering was nominated back in May of 2001, but Democrats prevented a floor vote (since it would no doubt be approved), while repeatedly smearing him as racist.

Even the New York Times, after extensive interviews in Laurel, Miss., acknowledged that "on the streets of his small and largely black hometown, far from the bitterness of partisan agendas and position papers, Charles Pickering is a widely admired figure." As the Wall Street Journal put it, the judge has "the support of the African-Americans who know him best, including the Mississippi chapter of the NAACP. Mr. Pickering sent his children to the newly integrated public schools in that state in the 1960s, and he helped the FBI in prosecutions of the KKK, testifying against the imperial wizard in 1967 at some personal risk."

Keep in mind that the same filibustering Democrats revere Senator Robert Byrd (D-W. …