The Political Parties and the Courts; Democrats Face Huge Challenges

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), November 2, 2005 | Go to article overview

The Political Parties and the Courts; Democrats Face Huge Challenges


Byline: Barry Casselman, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The decision about who would be named to replace retiring or deceased justices on the U.S. Supreme Court was made on Nov. 2, 2004. Prior to that, in the national elections, the candidates and political parties had been quite specific about what kind of justices they would choose if they were elected. George W. Bush went out of his way to do this, and Democrats reinforced public awareness of this by warning against this outcome. Nevertheless, a majority of voters re-elected President Bush and gave him an increased majority in the Senate, which must approve his judicial choices.

The advise-and-consent clause of the Constitution was clearly intended to be a check or review of presidential nominations. The standard is not only whether there is agreement about a particular nominee's philosophy, but whether a nominee meets the qualifications of office.

It is true that the direction of Supreme Court decisions is now at a turning point. By returning a conservative president and a Republican Senate repeatedly to office, the voters have signaled they want and approve of this change. Public-opinion polls, for whatever they are worth, strongly reinforce this conclusion when questions about critical judicial decisions are posed to voters.

As a political centrist, I likely would not have selected Judge Samuel Alito for the court vacancy if I were president. Almost certainly, no Democratic president would have chosen him. But the choice is not mine, nor is it the Democrats' to make. The initial negative wave from liberal interest groups, and from the most liberal senators, is predictable, but it is not necessarily helpful to their cause.

A similar campaign was intended to thwart the confirmation of now-Chief Justice John Roberts only months ago, but Justice Roberts' character and distinction as a legal mind overwhelmed this intention, and he was easily confirmed. Judge Alito's legal track record is larger than was Justice Roberts', and thus more open to controversy, but barring the very unlikely revelation of some flaw in Judge Alito's public life, his apparent intellectual distinction, character, demeanor and grasp of the law should make his confirmation a formality.

Questions about his legal philosophy may be asked. Questions about how he would decide on specific issues and cases will be appropriately rebuffed, as they have been by all recent nominees to the court made by presidents of both parties. I do not question that these specific issues and cases are what is on the mind of both sides, but I remind that this was already settled in the national election of 2004. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Political Parties and the Courts; Democrats Face Huge Challenges
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.