John Muir, a columnist for the Southern Illinoisan, just may have gotten to the bottom of the dreck of the Chuck Schumer-Dick Durbin posturing in regards to the upcoming full-senate vote on the confirmation of John Roberts as the next Chief Justice:
And, oh my, what pride in the state of Illinois I felt when both Sen. Dick Durbin and Sen. Barack Obama both said they would vote against Roberts. I would guess, particularly in the case of Durbin, that his "no" vote is based on him being squarely in the "mainstream" of what Illinois residents want and believe. Or then again, it could be based on what television producer Norman Lear wants and believes.
According to a story that appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Durbin and Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., attended an event in Los Angeles on behalf of People for the American Way, a liberal activist group founded by Lear. The event was held the weekend prior to the Judiciary Committee vote and, according the story, Lear lashed out at Democrats for not mounting more resistance to Roberts' nomination.
While there will be those who claim I'm jumping to conclusions, it certainly does seem a little more than ironic that only four days after the conversation with Lear, both Durbin and Schumer voted against the Roberts confirmation. It was probably just a coincidence, don't you think?
During the hearings, Roberts gave one particular answer that sums up why some Democrats cannot vote for his confirmation. Ironically, that answer came under questioning from Durbin about "personal freedom."Durbin asked: "If you've made one point many times over during the course of the last three days, it is that as a judge you will be loyal and faithful to the process of law, to the rule of law. But, beyond loyalty to the process of law how do you view the law when it comes to expanding our personal freedoms?"
Roberts' answer, I think, is all we can hope for from any judge.
Roberts answered: "Somebody asked me, 'are you going to be on the side of the little guy?' And you obviously want to give an immediate answer. 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, 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 to uphold the Constitution and laws of the United States and that is what I would do."
Don't you have to believe Roberts sent cold chills down the spines of some of the Democrats when he noted the oath of a judge is not to look out for "particular interests?"
Brilliant writing. And brilliant analysis in Muir linking Norman Lear to the Schumer and Durbin opposition to John Roberts.
Moron Norman Lear and People for the American Way here.