Cultural Revolutions

Appointing Supreme Court Justices

Michael McConnell, to use the overworked metaphor, is the “poster boy” for the Senate Democrats’ attempts to frustrate President Bush’s promise to appoint more Supreme Court justices like Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas.  Scalia and Thomas are the two current justices who have most closely embraced a jurisprudence faithful to the understanding of the Framers, and, thus, they are the two most opposed to legislating from the bench.  So far, the Senate Democrats on the Judiciary Committee have acted in accordance with the wishes of their firmest supporters—pro-abortion activists, affirmative-action advocates, and opponents of allowing religion into the public square—who view Scalia and Thomas as anathema.  Accordingly, they have rejected superbly qualified conservative nominees to the federal appellate courts, such as federal district-court judge Charles Pickering of Mississippi (whom they wrongly tarred as a racist) and Texas Supreme Court Justice Patricia Owen (who, they claimed, was out of the mainstream with regard to a woman’s “right to choose” and other issues).  Pickering and Owen were not even sent to the Senate floor: Their nominations were killed by the Democrats on the committee by a ten-to-nine party-line vote.

The liberal “public-interest groups” have generally sought to “Bork” McConnell, too, painting him as a dangerous...

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