Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Roberts: The Confirmation

9:32 - Spector jumps right into abortion, with the importance of precedent to the Casey decision. Roberts talks about factors to consider in overturning cases, including erosion of precedent.
Spector asks if Roe has been eroded - Roberts refuses to answer.

9:38 - Spector notes that Casey stated that overruling Roe would weaken the legitimacy of the Court, asks if Roberts agrees.
Roberts agrees that legitimacy of the Court is a real consideration, it is a "jolt to the legal system" when you overturn precedent - the prior decision being wrongly decided isn't enough.

9:45 - Spector holds up 10 foot board noting the 38 cases in which the Court could have overturned Roe, but did not. Asks if that created a "super stare decisis" situation.
Roberts notes that simply having the chance to overturn isn't the same as really considering the underlying issues.

9:48 - Spector asks about Roberts personal views, does he agree with JFK who said "I do not speak for my religion and it does not speak for me."
Yes, Roberts agrees.

9:50 - Spector asks about Roberts comment about the "so-called right to privacy....that such an amorphous right is not found in the Constitution."
Roberts agrees that the concept of right to privacy is in the 1st and 4th and the greatest of all (in Ferguson's opinion), the 3rd. "So-called right to privacy" is not a reflection of his opinion.

9:54 - Roberts emphasizes again that whether a case should be overruled is a different question from whether a case was correctly decided.

9:57 - Spector asks if the tradition of liberty is a living thing.
Roberts says yes.

10:00 - The Dems have their turn, Leahy begins with a question about the balance of power, referencing a memo Roberts wrote in 1982 that questions the role of Congress is decreeing when a conflict (Lebanon) ends.
Commercial for Window Factory of America interrupts response. Those are nice windows.

10:15 - Roberts noted that the reason that many, himself included, admire Justice Jackson was because he advocated very strongly for his president when AG for FDR and then decided many cases contrary to opinions expressed when he was an AG. He realized his job was different as Justice. Possible foreshadowing or crafty maneuver?

10:33 - Hatch asks what type of Judge is Roberts, e.g. Strict Interpretation, literalist.
Roberts says he prefers to catagorize himself as a "modest judge." Notes that "2/3 of senate" warrents a literal reading, much tougher for "unreasonable search and seizure."

10:35-11:35 - Can't pay attention with red-faced baby crying...no, not Ted Kennedy, my actual baby.

Hearings on 15 minute break.

4:08 - Sorry, I began taking a shot everytime Roberts said "stare decisis"...I think I passed out there for a while.

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