Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Quote of the Day

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) at the Sotomayor confirmation hearings on “judicial restraint” and the line that a Supreme Court justice is like an umpire calling “balls and strikes”:

For all the talk of ‘modesty’ and ‘restraint,’ the right wing Justices of the Court have a striking record of ignoring precedent, overturning congressional statutes, limiting constitutional protections, and discovering new constitutional rights: the infamous Ledbetter decision, for instance; the Louisville and Seattle integration cases; the first limitation on Roe v. Wade that outright disregards the woman’s health and safety; and the DC Heller decision, discovering a constitutional right to own guns that the Court had not previously noticed in 220 years. Some ‘balls and strikes.’ Over and over, news reporting discusses ‘fundamental changes in the law’ wrought by the Roberts Court’s right wing flank. The Roberts Court has not kept the promises of modesty or humility made when President Bush nominated Justices Roberts and Alito.