Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Sam Alito = bad

In case you need more detail than the title, look here:

  • "Alito appears to have favored environmental protections 'mainly in the face of unanimous agreement and overwhelming evidence against polluters,'";
  • His reading of the 11th Amendment may block enforcement of federal environmental laws against state governments and related agencies (cities, etc.) that construct environmentally damaging infrastructure;
  • He supports restrictions on citizen suits based on harsh application of "standing," a doctrine not found anywhere in the Constitution that conservatives made up to overrule congressional authority; and
  • His reading of the Constitution's Commerce Clause would limit its power, which in turn could limit environmental laws based on the Commerce Clause power.

For a stupid defense of Alito by a stupid blog, try Powerline. They say his dissent in an opinion saying it was illegal to strip-search a 10 year-old girl with a faulty warrant was correct, but they make the mistake of providing a link so you can read the actual decision. The warrant was faulty because it failed to request a search of all the building's occupants, although a supporting affidavit did request such a search. The problem is that the reviewing magistrate never had to confront whether the affidavit gave enough evidence to support a search of all occupants, because the warrant didn't ask for that search. End result for Alito: if the government undertakes a criminal procedure that resembles a legal action, then it's legal.

In Alito's defense, he apparently has supported gender discrimination as grounds for political asylum. Overall, he's probably one of those biased-but-persuadable conservative judges. Liberal causes start out with two strikes against them in his court - you can win sometimes, but it's not easy or fair.

But none of the above determines whether Dems should filibuster. If they do, Republicans will violate the Constitution and deploy the nuclear option to confirm him. Democrats can then shut down everything else Congress does in retaliation. Repubs will blame the Dems for obstructionism. Not sure this plays out well in an election year.

I almost blogged a while back that we should confirm Miers, but couldn't quite bring myself to do it. Maybe that was a mistake.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.