Monday, November 14, 2005

Shedding Light On Alito

I've been reserving judgement on the Alito nomination until more information becomes available. Nothing through last week convinced me that he would be a bad choice. Then of course, the New York Times publishes a pretty damning article:
"I am particularly proud of my contributions in recent cases in which the government argued that racial and ethnic quotas should not be allowed and that the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion," [Alito] said.

...In the document, Alito also declared himself a "lifelong registered" Republican and a Federalist Society member...

In the document, Alito said he drew inspiration from the "writings of William F. Buckley, Jr., The National Review and Barry Goldwater's 1964 campaign."

"In college, I developed a deep interest in constitutional law, motivated in large part by disagreement with Warren Court decisions, particularly in the areas of criminal procedure, the Establishment Clause and reapportionment," he said.
OK, he appears to be hostile to affirmative action (I say that because conservatives often use the euphemism of "racial and ethnic quotas" to refer to affirmative action generally rather than merely quotas, which is a more complex discussion) and privacy rights (which Roe is founded on).

Of course, what I find even more troubling than that is that he appears to be proud to be a member of the Federalist Society and that he was inspired by Buckley, The National Review, and Barry Goldwater. Read that again: a member of the Federalist Society and inspired by Barry Goldwater. And of course he seems opposed to the Warren Court.

I've got no qualms about votes against him now or even a filibuster against him. Alito now appears to be a very dangerous nominee to the Supreme Court. He's on the record as being opposed to abortion but has told Senators, including Arlen Specter, that he has "great respect" for precedent. But how can he support precedent if he truly does not believe in the constitutionality of the precedent?

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