The McCain Court: Appointing Conservative Judges Would Undermine the Maverick's Legislative Legacy
Dougherty, Michael Brendan, The American Conservative
THE PROSPECT of overturning Roe v. Wade may be only incentive powerful enough to turn a disillusioned conservative into a motivated McCain voter this November. After the betrayals of the Bush era, many on the Right still point to the ascendance of John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court and proclaim, "It was worth it." Campaigning across the country, McCain promises conservative audiences, "We're going to have justices like Roberts and Alito." And Sen. John Cornyn told the New York Times that judges "are the one issue that cuts across all aspects of the Republican coalition," saying that in the run up to November, "I will encourage him to make it a prominent part of his pitch."
But will the Arizonan make good and usher in a conservative majority on the Court? Unlikely. Republicans hoping to rally their dispirited base in 2008 can find little evidence that John McCain is interested in effecting a judicial counter-revolution. Though there will probably be multiple vacancies in the Supreme Court in the next presidential term--John Paul Stevens turns 88 this April; Ruth Bader Ginsburg is 74; Anthony Kennedy is 71-- McCain has never made the judiciary a central theme of his campaign.
Given the chance to join conservatives in disarming Democratic opposition to conservative judges, McCain compromised. Lacking incentives to appoint strict constructionists, his attitude toward judicial conservatives runs between indifference and hostility. And while McCain dutifully praises …
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Publication information: Article title: The McCain Court: Appointing Conservative Judges Would Undermine the Maverick's Legislative Legacy. Contributors: Dougherty, Michael Brendan - Author. Magazine title: The American Conservative. Volume: 7. Issue: 5 Publication date: March 10, 2008. Page number: 14+. © 2009 The American Conservative LLC. COPYRIGHT 2008 Gale Group.
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