Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Vaderize03, Apr 9, 2010.
I would never dream of claiming otherwise.
It would seem to me that animal rights activists would also find that anything they use to highlight problems of animal abuse would ALSO have been made illegal.
What's with the minority talk? I see many qualified people that could take the vacant spot on the Court and they all come from different racial/ethnic/religious backgrounds.
I'm not really a Clinton-ite but is it possible that President Clinton could serve on the Court after having being barred from practicing law? Just curious.
A perfect example of the overbreadth problem. Too bad Roberts didn't think of that one in his opinion.
Lowbacca for supreme court - 2010
My understanding is that you can theoretically appoint anyone you want to the Supreme Court. They don't even have to have a background in law.
Also see - my last statement.
For example that Harriet Miers lady.
To be fair, Harriet Miers was an lawyer. Setting aside the political arena, she was one of Microsoft's corporate attorneys for a time, which is interesting.
I don't know if her religious views would have meshed with the Supreme Court, but as has been mentioned, other justices have religious views that don't interfere with matters of law. I'd say she should at least been given a hearing, no different than any other nominee, but she came at a time when doom and gloom Bush conspiracy was probably at its zenith.
She was unqualified for the job, but not in a way that was entirely unprecedented in the history of supreme court nominations. It came off looking like a cynical bid to nominate someone with blind, rabid loyalty to Bush personally rather than any kind of commitment to building a legacy of high level conservative jurisprudence. It failed in part because even Republicans were shocked.
I'm certainly not interested in defending Harriet Miers, but that wasn't my main point. I just think that she should at least have gotten a hearing that's afforded to every nominee. She was a corporate lawyer before becoming White House Council, and not a random choice. If she continued to give vague answers to Constitutional issues like abortion or what-not, those answers would have certainly came around and bitten her on the butt. At least accountability and the process would have been upheld.
It would be like if Sotomayor's nomination was withdrawn because of her "wise Latina woman" comment absent a hearing or without the opportunity to clarify and/or expand on her statement. Some still complained about her partisanship, but at least she was given a confirmation hearing.
Things like being "blindly loyal" to the President who nominated you have historically worked themselves out in the long run. John Paul Stevens/Ford is the perfect example.
And that probably would have happened but for the opposition of key Republican Senators. The benefit of that spanking of course was that it focused the administration with the result that the Alito and Roberts nominations were acclaimed as brilliant, an assessment I'd agree with.
Quite shrewd indeed...
I respect Roberts, but Alito has no gravitas, for lack of a better word.
I respect him as well, but I agree that he misrepresented himself in his hearings. An umpire doesn't try and change the rules of the game.
Not that this is limited to conservatives, mind you....
Well I guess you have to ask which is worse, to say that you believe you are an umpire and then don't exactly follow that analogy, or just admit you are the rules committee for baseball and just decide what you think is best. And yes I did just strech that analogy way too far.
It's not so much that Roberts does it, it's that conservative judges do it just as often as liberals, but conservative politicians only acknowledge "liberal", as opposed to "conservative" activism.
Except the Roberts court has been quite free of judicial activist decisions thus far. When exactly is he supposed to have changed the rules as Umpire? I mean, the Supreme Court is going to make potentially controversial decisions by design. But activism isn't synonymous with controversy on its own.
Judicial Activism is like if a judge allowed a group like "Code Pink" to have parking spaces in front of recruiting stations, but then turn around and bar the military in the same circumstance because the judge is personally "anti-war." Either apply the law fairly and equally or not at all.
(ahem, here's looking at you, 9th Court of Appeals...)
Or political, not necessarily judicial, activism would be like Gavin Newsom ignoring state law in an official capacity because he didn't agree with the content, instead of working to get the law changed.
I think by the nature of the overall mindsets, liberal activists are more in favor of taking direct action to force change, so I think there is probably a lot more high profile examples of liberal-themed judicial activism. I'd say this up until the Tea Party, of course. What makes the Tea Party so difficult to characterize is that it's a conservative group that's adopted traditionally left-leaning rally methods.
But any rate, I certainly haven't seen any of these types of examples from the Roberts Court, in either direction.
This is where there is a difference of perspective.
"Activism" can mean three things:
1) Distorting a part of the Constitution that says exactly what it means into something that it doesn't. Rarest form, since much of the document is very vague in many areas.
2) Overturning legislative statutes.
3) Any decision with which the other side doesn't agree.
The Roberts court has engaged rulings which have made sweeping changes. That is where the cries of "activism!" come from. The rulings on affirmative action, and the recent campaign contribution ruling, are glaring examples of #2. The campaign decision would fall under #3, except that a majority of Americans disagree with what the court says.
Where I think you and I are disconnecting is that you may not necessarily see issuing narrow rulings that have broad, sweeping effects as activist, whereas I do. Many conservatives discount such decisions as activism; instead, they are seen as a restoration of the law to what it "should" have been, and therefore are not "activist". This is an example of manipulating the law to enforce one's position, and it's done by both liberals and conservatives.
The Roberts court has tacked far to the right on several major issues by issuing rulings which have made major changes to legislated law. That makes it an activist court. The fact that the decisions have a conservative bend doesn't alter that fact-only the perspective behind it, depending on which side of the aisle you sit .
I suppose I see that to a point. But the entire reason that there is a Supreme Court is to interpret the law under separation of powers, so I guess by design, the Court is activist. My problem is that this idea is overly broad. I mean, the plain jane dictionary definition of activism is "the deliberate use of direct action in support or against a cause." I don't think that simply issuing a ruling on a point law, even if it brings about change, is activism for activism's sake.
Well then, 44, how exactly are you employing the term? And how do you come to the conclusion "liberal-themed judicial activism" is wildly more common? How does it become anything more than an exercise in impugning the motives of certain judges? All sides frame their decisions in terms of particular judicial philosophies (none of which are as simple as "what I personally think is right") and no side is oblivious to the implications of the philosophies to which they adhere. Nor, to top it off, does anyone really adhere with perfect consistency to those frameworks in the first place. So. . .?
Sure, that's easy to answer.
1)Considering I never used the term "wildly more popular," or any sentiment close to that, and instead made the less pointed observation that there are probably more examples of...
2)I was bantering in a not-so-serious way with V03...
I guess I can't answer, because your post isn't reflective of what I think?
I think the point here is that cries of "activism" have become a target on the back of progressives that gets shot at so reflexively it has led to an equally reflexive defensive posture that ends up ignoring the truth.
The fact remains, activism is a relative term when applied to political hot-button issues and the role of the judiciary. I clearly remember Tom Delay calling for the impeachment of the Ninth Circuit Justices who overturned Florida's Terry Schiavo bill; this is the same politician who spent several years trotting out "liberal activist judges" whenever Bush's nominees came to a vote and democrats hindered their confirmations.
Anyway, always fun to banter with you 44.
I both appreciate and appreciated the playful tone in the posts. However, I had assumed that, as is apparently the case with V03 (given that it's consistent with what he's said both before and after the episode), you were at some level expressing an actual opinion that you had. Otherwise, the point is sort of lost on me. But regardless, I don't see how my misunderstanding prevents you from answering the question "How would you define judicial activism?" If you'd rather not answer, that's fine. But the question isn't predicated on anything, so I'm having serious trouble seeing how it leaves you "unable" to answer.
Looks like there may be an annoucement at the end of this week.
Favorites are Kagan and Garland, both Jewish, which has spawned an interesting bit of speculation on a Supreme Court without Prostestants.
I find it somewhat interesting, myself, that this is what the pundits are talking about, rather than the potential for a further swing to the right of the court.