T Nation

Roberts Confirmation Hearings


Why does it not surprise me that Judge Roberts is not being given the same treatment accorded current Justices Ginsburg and Breyer on topics/cases not yet before the court? (i.e. Not being able to comment on specifics of decisions and cases which could come before him as a Supreme Court justice). And it surprises me even less that Senator Kennedy seems to be the most strident on it. sigh Partisanship reigns... again.



What surprises me is that you expect him to get on with no examination what-so-ever. With Bush's record of wacky-retard-appointees I hope they drag this out until mid-term elections. They should ask every question under the sun and then some--opinions, previous court rulings, favorite position, boxers or briefs, etc.

I think people don't realize the power this man will have once he's confirmed. Something I am direly afraid of. Officials that aren't elected that will have as much influence as this man need the utmost scrutiny. So, I ask--what is the proper line of questioning that democrats (and republicans) should be able to get away with?


Straw man rides again. Where do I say or even imply that I expect he should get on with "no examination what-so-ever"? I'm curious. Also curious as to who the appointees Bush has in place now that is apparently so awful. Please do tell.

My point is that they are asking questions that are borderline ridiculous to ask someone who will have to review cases at some later point. Judges have to look at issues on a case-by-case basis, so if a senator asks them some random question of how they would treat Roe v. Wade, what kind of question is that? What is the case that is up challenging it in the first place?

So your plan is to just drag this out forever and impede the ability of the court to carry out its mission. That's just utterly brilliant. The concept behind the hearings is to determine his fitness as a judge and will he bring a fair, impartial view to the cases in front of him to the best of his ability. In other words, is he a good judge? God forbid we just try to answer that question without turning over rocks simply for the sake of partisan politics. That has not happened in the past but it looks like it will be the case now. Yay.


He is certainly making Biden and Schumer look like asses.

I heard Kennedy came off poorly to although I didn't see it.


Not all that difficult to do with schumer. I don't think I have ever seen a politician who makes my skin crawl more than this man.


I heard Biden and Schumer had their hats handed to them quite convincingly.

I'm not always happy to admit when I'm wrong, but wrt Judge Robert's confirmation, I'm glad that I am being proven wrong - so far.

Does the left have enough capital to pull off a filibuster at this stage? Judging from the flimsy, partisan bickering that the Dem committee members have been engaging in - it would seem that they know they will lose this one, and they are just trying to be as snarky as possible on the way down.


I agree, however the next Supreme Court Justice nomination will cause a huge democratic uprising! They simply won't allow Bush to appoint two conservatives in a row without a fight.


Anyone have a good source for the transcript of the exchanges?

I missed them all, but would like to read them.


No kidding. I find Trent Lott to be majorly creepy too but Schumer has him beat by a mile.


Transcript (summary):

Sen. Biden: What do you think of Justice [fill in the blank]'s ruling as pertaining to [someone] v. [someone_else]?

Judge Roberts: [some high falutent mumbo-jumbo loosely related to that hearing that he learned as first year law student] but senator, I respectfully decline to answer that as I may have to sit and hear this case as it's on the docket in a matter I of months.

...20 mins passes with same scenario

[/b] Sen. Schumer[/b]: Judge Roberts, in your opinion why do you think Jutice [fill in the blank]'s ruling as pertaining to [someone] v. [someone_else or some_establishment] was right or wrong?

Judge Roberts: [some high falutent mumbo-jumbo loosly related to that hearing that he read specifically for this confirmation hearing] but senator, I respectfully decline to answer that as I may have to make a ruling on this subject matter in this case and I don't think it's prudent or appropriate because I don't want to contradict myself later.

...It goes on like this for many more boring hours...



Biden: I am holding 5 briefs you have written and they say

Roberts: Senator Biden, you have taken one word from each brief to string them together to make a misleading statement.

Biden (while interrupting): Stop filibustering and showing the world what a lying sack of shit I am. This is my moment in the spotlight. Do not spoil it for me.



And yet again we go down a line of questioning that is not just off-topic... I actually think its flat-out offensive. I am not one to get offended too easily, but as a Catholic, I think its ridiculous to somehow insinuate that my faith could somehow make me less worthy for public service of any sort. If you think I am being overly sensitive, take a long hard look at how many Catholic presidents we have had... it is not pure coincidence.

Sorry if this sounds like a hissy fit, but this is a huge hot button for me.


It's very common to attack someone because of their faith. Liberals have almost made it open season on any Judge or politician who shows even a modicum of religious belief. Liberals worship at the feet of government....


To add a moment of levity to the hearings:



From http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2005/09/15/BAroberts15.DTL

Roberts replied that he had been asked him privately if he would take the side of the little guy. ?You obviously want to give an immediate answer,? Roberts said, ?but as you reflect on it, if the Constitution says that the little guy should win, the little guy is going to win in court before me. But if the Constitution says that the big guy should win, well, then the big guy is going to win because my obligation is to the Constitution. That?s the oath. The oath that a judge takes is not that I?ll look out for particular interests. ? The oath is: uphold the Constitution and laws of the United States, and that?s what I would do.?