Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
January 31, 2006
LAW: Mr. Justice Alito

With 58 votes, and 71 votes against a filibuster. Ed Whelan explains why the last-minute Kerry/Kennedy filibuster was such a disaster for the Democrats.

Whether noted in tonight's State of the Union or not, today marks a real changing of the guard, with Justice Alito now joining Chief Justice Roberts to complete the replacement of Chief Justice Rehnquist and Justice O'Connor, and with Fed Chairman Greenspan ending his term today and giving way to the new chairman, Bernanke. The influence of Rehnquist, Greenspan and O'Connor stretches over more than three decades.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 11:59 AM | Law 2006-08 | Comments (11) | TrackBack (1)
Comments

Crank - since you usually provide great insight into the nitty/gritty of legal proceedings, I'd be interested in your take on the President's maneauvers to replace the man in charge of the Abramoff investigation.

As quoted in Howard Kurtz's column this morning (originally reported by Martin Garbus):

"At some point, it all becomes unbelievable.

"President George W. Bush has not made many moves more unethical than offering Noel L. Hillman, the Abramoff prosecutor, a federal judgeship. Hillman has apparently been talking with Bush's representatives since last year, and on last Thursday, he publicly announced he was accepting the appointment.

"Let me make this perfectly clear. At the same time that Mr. Hillman was conducting a grand jury and submitting evidence aimed at Bush's allies and perhaps Bush himself, he was meeting with Bush, who was, in effect, offering him a bribe.

"Mr. Hillman, Bush is saying, leave the job, let me put someone else in your stead, someone I want. Forget, says Mr. Bush, that you have been in charge of the investigation for two years, that you have been involved on a day-to-day basis, and that your leaving seriously impedes the investigation."

Posted by: patrick at January 31, 2006 3:00 PM

That the Democrats took a hit is just the cherry on top. The real victories, among many, are that we're now one step closer to eliminating legal abortions, and more importantly (IMO, at least in the short term) allowing the president access to a full tool box with which to fight the war on terror with. I think people fail to realize that the constitution and the rule of law are important (I don't say that flippantly), but if we're vulnerable to another terrorist attack, what do they matter? What does the rule of law matter if we're hit with a suitcase nuke?

We're lucky to have a president who recognizes that some things (like our LIVES) are more important than following arcane laws that were passed without the enlightenment of living in a post 9-11 reality. So Alito is a real victory for not only getting rid of things like the horror legal abortions(or at least making it a state's issue), but also protecting our very existence.

*my first blog post/rant.

Posted by: mikeinpa at January 31, 2006 3:14 PM

"So Alito is a real victory for not only getting rid of things like the horror legal abortions(or at least making it a state's issue..."

I stopped posting on this topic as a) someone else took it up and b) it was too frustrating. However, it is good to know that there is yet one more disingenous poster here on this topic. Some of the anti-choice posters here at least have vaguely consistent opinions. Anyone who posts that statement likely does not. Is it un-horrifying to you if states decide it is legal?

Posted by: jim at January 31, 2006 6:47 PM

I'll always find abortions horrific, regardless of the circumstances under which they happen. But I do think it should be up to states to set up their own abortion laws.

I hope that answers your question? I'm not sure what you think I'm being disingenuous about.

Posted by: mikeinpa at January 31, 2006 7:03 PM

Mike-

The fear is that the anti-Roe cry of "states rights!" now turns into "Constitutional amendment to ban abortion!" once a few states allow it to be legal, even post-Roe.

Although I think Roe's awful and probably wouldn't vote for a state legislator who would vote to allow abortion, I can't say that such fear isn't legitimate.

Posted by: seamus at January 31, 2006 7:36 PM

Ok, well...hmm, maybe I was being disingenuous. While I prefer it be up to the states, it's even my first instinct, which is why I said it. But I have to be honest and say I wouldn't object to a constitutional amendment banning abortion. So, yeah, color me a hypocrite on that point.

If Republicans can hold the house and senate, and with Alito now on the bench, it seems like the time is now to actually make it happen.

Posted by: mikeinpa at January 31, 2006 7:55 PM

There's a difference between "possibly inconsistent" and "disingenuous."

By the why, what does "anti-choice" mean? After you pile euphemism on euphemism on euphemism, as the pro-baby killing crowd does (to avoid all euphemism myself), maybe you venture into the realm of what's disingenuous yourself. Just a thought.

Posted by: John Salmon at January 31, 2006 8:05 PM

"by the way"

Posted by: John Salmon at January 31, 2006 8:06 PM

John-

You're the one being disingenuous, dishonest, and close-minded with your use of the hackneyed "pro-baby killing" label.

I'll repeat it here, and on every other blog, til science comes along to prove me wrong: Baby killing is illegal in the US, in every state, and neither Roe nor Casey says a damn thing about "baby killing."

You want to have a legitimate debate on the merits of aborting an unborn clump of cells, bring it on. But when science is still unsure *exactly* when a human life begins or becomes viable, I'll err on the side of rights for adults as opposed to rights for something closer to a tadpole.

And by the way, you know exactly what "anti-choice" means, because you're part of that camp. It means that you would use legal force to deny a grown woman the choice over what she does with her body, and what she does during the first 18-24 years of the unwanted life of those unborn cells if and when they're finally born.

Not much into freedom, huh?

Posted by: Mike at February 1, 2006 6:05 AM

Mike writes: "It means that you would use legal force ...., and what she does during the first 18-24 years of the unwanted life of those unborn cells if and when they're finally born."

OK I admit - I have no idea what Mike means here

Posted by: Maryland Conservatarian at February 1, 2006 1:36 PM

Maryland Conservatarian-

That's what writing at 6:00 AM gets me. Sheesh. Coffee-then-write, coffee-then-write.

It should effectively read, "It means that you would use legal force . . . to deny a grown woman the choice over what she does during the first 18-24 years of the unwanted life of those unborn cells if and when they're finally born."

And that's still awkward. Sorry.

What it means is the anti-choice brigade not only wants to make a woman carry a fetus to term against her will, but wants to force her to raise a child she never wanted. By the way, that's not only an injustice to the woman, but to the future child as well.

I find it odd that those who care so much about the "life" of the fetus are so cavalier about it once it's actually alive.

Posted by: Mike at February 1, 2006 1:52 PM
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