Thursday, January 12, 2006
Alito In Their Nightmares
I don't have the heart to check out DU. They are probably experiencing fainting spells or hysterics. Alito will certainly be confirmed. Chief No-Nag is in quite a state of indignation. As soon as I got home he started pacing the floor and denouncing some of the worst shenanigans in the hearings. He said that too many of the senators acted as if they were trying to prove that they were smarter than Alito. He said they should have consulted lawyers about the tack to take in asking relevant questions, and that they should have prepared properly instead of grandstanding. He listened to some of the hearings on radio and I gather it has more of an impact than reading the transcripts.
Schumer's name was uttered with great scorn. The word "hypocrite" was brandished with vigor. Chief No-Nag is not excitable about these matters - normally he's shaking his head and laughing or just shrugs his shoulders in exasperation. It must have been very bad to produce this much emotion. He seems to approve of Alito because he thought Alito kept wanting to talk about the law, while the senators wanted to make their points. Chief No-Nag is a scientist and he is very fixated on facts and details. Any hint of a desire to warp or twist fact does get his goat, so maybe that's what did it. I've got to read the Schumer transcript from today.
Washington Post has an excellent resource page. It includes the transcripts, articles and a summary study of Alito's cases. That's particularly interesting because of all the nonsense about studies proving that Alito is always against individual rights, etc. The study looks at cases where there was a difference of opinion. I don't think this type of study is valid, but if you do then I think you should look at it.
According to the analysis, in property, union and employee benefit cases Alito tends to vote for the little guy. Scroll down to the bottom of the page, and you see that he is midway betweeen Democratic and Republican appointees. The claim that he is in some way extreme can not be supported with such an analysis.
Now the list of cases decided for the prosecution on criminal search, trial and sentencing looks as if it might support the contention. He decided 29 cases in favor of the prosecution. But if you look at the details you see that he voted with the majority of the circuit court in 18 of those and in two more he was partly with the majority and partly against. In the other 9 cases he voted to uphold the lower court. Out of the 18 cases in which he was in the majority, 7 times they voted against the lower court. There are, of course, a lot of these types of cases and they disproportionately go for the prosecution.
As the study notes "He has agreed with the majority slightly less often than the typical judge, and notably less often than other appellate judges who were appointed by Republican Presidents." If you want to believe this sort of analysis, I'd say it supports Alito's statement that he does look at the law very carefully and attempt to follow it. I'd say the country as a whole got lucky with this one.
Thank you, Carl! I'm glad it's Alito and not Miers. I'm glad the Republicans had to eat this one.
Still, I'm a proud alumni of the "rebel alliance," vindicated in tactics and analysis--without waivering.
Alito will be an excellent Associate Justice. It's an unexpected bonus that he also "defanged" Ted Kennedy, exposing the illogic, animus and bias pervading Democrat hacks on the Senate Judiciary.
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