Supreme Court

9th Circuit: Judges, or Robed Activists?

Featured image Mark Pulliam notes that the famously left-wing 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is sponsoring a “Mid-Winter Workshop.” Mark comments: Chief Justice Roberts recently chastised President Trump for criticizing federal judges as partisan. Roberts insisted that “We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges. What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing their level best….” The Ninth Circuit makes that Pollyannish assessment »

Kavanaugh sides with liberals, Roberts to duck Planned Parenthood related cases

Featured image The frenzy surrounding Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination — including, but hardly limited to, the weakly supported charge of sexual assault — obscured the fact that Kavanaugh was by no means the most conservative plausible candidate for elevation to the Supreme Court. In my view, Justice Kavanaugh was likely to be somewhere between Chief Justice Roberts and former Justice Scalia/Justice Alito on the ideological spectrum. That’s not a bad place to be, »

Why Roberts responded to Trump

Featured image Some conservatives are criticizing Chief Justice Roberts for responding to President Trump’s attack on “Obama judges.” They note that Roberts did not respond when President Obama criticized the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United during a state of the union address. But there’s an obvious difference between the two situations. Obama was saying that the Supreme Court got one case wrong. Trump was attacking a large number of federal judges »

At the WH with Justice Kavanaugh

Featured image Yesterday evening President Trump presided over the ceremonial swearing in of Brett Kavanaugh as associate justice of the Supreme Court at the White House. Justice Kavanaugh was officially sworn in on Saturday by Chief Justice John Roberts and retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. Justice Kennedy administered the oath again in the ceremony yesterday evening. President Trump prefaced the swearing in with a national apology to Justice Kavanaugh for his ordeal. He »

The Left Declares Total War

Featured image If it wasn’t already evident that even if Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court in a few days the left will carry on with a full-scale attack (including an impeachment investigation), then the email below from Harold Meyerson of The American Prospect sent out yesterday makes the matter explicit. I’ll intersperse my comments in places: The Back-Up Way of Defeating Kavanaugh. Assume the worst: Let’s posit that within »

Ramirez on the Supreme Court

Featured image Michael Ramirez is America’s foremost editorial cartoonist. More important, he is a warrior in the fight for freedom. On top of that, he is amazingly prolific. Some of Michael’s most recent cartoons deal with the Democrats’ disgraceful smearing of Judge Kavanaugh. Click to enlarge: This is Michael’s latest, which I love: Memo to Mitch McConnell: let’s make it happen! »

Flake Flakes Out [Updated]

Featured image Earlier this morning, Senator Jeff Flake said he would vote Yes on Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation. But when the Judiciary Committee met and voted, he threw a curve ball: Flake voted Yes and the nomination went to the Senate floor on an 11-10 party line vote. But Flake said he will ultimately vote for the nomination only if there is a brief delay to permit another FBI investigation. Lisa Murkowski »

Who Won [Updated]

Featured image I caught only bits and pieces of Christine Ford’s testimony, and have seen some of the commentary on it. I watched Judge Kavanaugh’s opening statement and portions of the questioning, including Lindsay Graham’s epic denunciation of the Democrats. That was enough, I think, to make an educated guess as to the hearing’s consequences. The consensus of the commentariat is that Ford was “credible.” That isn’t surprising. Most witnesses are credible »

The First Time Was Farce, Too

Featured image The Democrats’ current attack on Judge Brett Kavanaugh obviously recalls their failed assault on Clarence Thomas, who has gone on to a distinguished career as an intellectual leader of the Supreme Court. Memories fade, and I had forgotten some of what Hans Bader details at Liberty Unyielding. I remember this much: the Thomas hearing was televised and gripped the nation. At the time, most Americans concluded that Anita Hill, who »

Well played, Chairman Grassley

Featured image I confess that, in real time, I was unhappy with Sen. Charles Grassley’s handling of the first hour of the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearing. My live-blogging of the hearing made clear my view that Chairman Grassley should have been much more firm with the Democratic committee members who were trying to throw a monkey wrench into the proceedings. I was wrong. Grassley played it almost perfectly. He let the Democrats »

Grassley: Kavanaugh accuser hasn’t yet agreed to testify

Featured image Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Chuck Grassley said today that Christine Blasey Ford has not yet accepted an invitation to testify next Monday regarding her allegation that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were in high school. Grassley stated: We have reached out to her in the last 36 hours three or four times by email and we have not heard from them, and it kind of »

A Note on the Lingering Merrick Garland Canard

Featured image A lot of liberals are saying the treatment of Brett Kavanaugh—even before this latest stunt—was merely payback for the Republican refusal to give Merrick Garland a hearing in 2016. Here we should pause to note an important fact. The Senate majority was entirely within its constitutional prerogatives not to take up the nomination, and insist the matter become part of the voters’ judgment in the November election. But there’s a »

Richard Epstein Nails It

Featured image I often quip that Richard Epstein is the smartest man in America, or at the very least that I wish I could be half as lucid as he is at his present age (75)—heck, I’d take being half as lucid as he is at my current age. In any case, his contribution to the Politico symposium this morning about the Kavanaugh matter absolutely nails it: The Democratic resistance to the »

Kavanaugh’s accuser finally goes public. What next?

Featured image We now know the name of the woman accusing Brett Kavanaugh of a sexual attack 36 years ago. She is Christine Blasey Ford. The Washington Post has her story. There are reasons to believe Ford and reasons not to believe her. In her favor, though certainly not conclusive, is the fact that she passed a polygraph test. The Washington Post has seen the results. In addition, Ford apparently told a »

The Kavanaugh smear, why now? [UPDATED]

Featured image Not long after President Trump nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh, Chuck Schumer tweeted: I will oppose Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination with everything I have. . . . The stakes are simply too high for anything less. Today’s stunt — the post-hearing ambush of Kavanaugh with an unspecified, unsourced claim of misconduct dating back to Kavanaugh’s high school days — seemed like the fulfillment of Schumer’s promise. But Dianne Feinstein reportedly has known about this »

Kavanaugh Cruises Toward Confirmation

Featured image Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley may hold a committee vote on Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination as early as Thursday, and it looks as though the full Senate will vote on his nomination this month. The latest blow to the Democrats’ hopes came today from Senator Susan Collins, who denounced liberal efforts to pressure her to vote against the nomination: Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) says she is not swayed by crowdfunding »

Will Dems Look to the Future When They Vote on Kavanaugh?

Featured image Democrats are lamenting that they did away with the filibuster of judicial nominees, because they cannot now block the appointment of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court without Republican votes. But that overlooks, I think, a more basic issue. Historically, both parties believed that Republican presidents have a right to nominate conservative justices, and Democratic presidents have a right to nominate liberal justices. As long as the nominee was »