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Monday, November 14, 2005

Last Straw?




According to the Washington Times, Samuel Alito has some 'splaining to do. Well, maybe not to the Moonie Times, but definitely to the rest of us.
Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr., President Bush's Supreme Court nominee, wrote that "the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion" in a 1985 document obtained by The Washington Times.

"I personally believe very strongly" in this legal position, Mr. Alito wrote on his application to become deputy assistant to Attorney General Edwin I. Meese III.
The Times attempts to portray this as an issue that "will inflame liberals," but I have news for them -- there are a whole lot of pro-choice conservatives out there who have issues with this as well. And it is high time for them to stand up and be counted.

The Times quotes Reagan era docs that are to be released today, in which Alito expressly states:
"It has been an honor and source of personal satisfaction for me to serve in the office of the Solicitor General during President Reagan's administration and to help to advance legal positions in which I personally believe very strongly," he wrote.

"I am particularly proud of my contributions in recent cases in which the government has argued in the Supreme Court that racial and ethnic quotas should not be allowed and that the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion."
Alito certainly deserves an opportunity to explain himself on this:

-- Was he sucking up to Meese, exaggerating his position to curry favor with his potential new boss? How does this reflect on his character if so?

-- Or is this exactly his position -- then and now? And if it is his position, what's with all the disengenuous at best floating of stare decisis? Who is he trying to lie to -- evangelicals or everyone else?

The Times article quotes an anonymous Republican source who argues that these words from a young Republican do not mean that a Justice Alito would rule in that way now.

I mean, you know, we all change over the years, right? Sure, I mean, I hold different political views than I did when I was younger...erm...wait, no I don't. Hmmmm......

Could these papers be the straw that breaks the camel's back for the Alito hearings? After the issue of his recusal ethics with his investment portfolio, with his honesty to Congress called into question in that mix, these new documents raise an awful lot of new questions. But the big question is: where are Democrats and the so-called moderate Republicans going to draw the line? Is this going to be the last straw?

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