Monday, I shared with you my Brown University speech setting out what needs to be said and done at this critical moment for our country. Today, in that same spirit of clarity and conviction, I want to tell you how I will vote on the nomination of John Roberts to serve as Chief Justice of the United States.
I will vote against this vitally important nomination.
Win or lose on this vote, it is essential that we act on our deepest convictions. And I refuse to vote for a Supreme Court nominee who came before the Senate intent on demonstrating his ability to deftly deflect legitimate questions about his views, opinions and philosophy.
John Roberts owed the American people far more than that.
If he is confirmed - and he may well be - the Roberts Court will shape the course of constitutional law for decades to come. It will decide dozens of cases that will define the depth and breadth of freedom in America - our commitment to civil rights, our dedication to civil liberties, our devotion to privacy and a woman's right to choose.
With that much at stake, Judge Roberts needed to show us where his heart is.
Instead he recited case law and said little about what he really thought. He needed to engage the Senate Judiciary Committee and the American people in a genuine conversation. He failed that test. And, while I recognize that other members of the Senate will legitimately make a different choice, I will vote "NO" on the Roberts nomination.
Click here to read excerpts from the statement announcing my position on the Roberts nomination. I urge you to read them - and, whatever the outcome of the Roberts vote, I encourage you to join me in insisting on a far more complete and extensive process on the critical nomination President Bush must now make to replace Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.
Please contact your Senators now. Tell them where you stand on the Roberts nomination and tell them that you insist on full, fair, and forthcoming hearings on the person George W. Bush puts forward for the pivotal seat now occupied by Justice O'Connor.
Senator and Bag Full of Douche
EDIT: Make that two e-mails
The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court is the most important judge on the most important court in our country, responsible for protecting and upholding the rights and freedoms outlined in our Constitution. I have carefully reviewed Judge John Roberts' testimony and listened to him give unsubstantial, boilerplate answers and avoid answering even the most basic questions about his own views today.
Based on everything I have seen and read from Judge Roberts' work in the Reagan Administration, his past opinions, and his most recent testimony, I wanted you to be the first to know that I must oppose his nomination to be our country's Chief Justice.
I do so because we do know the views and positions he took prior to the recent hearings. Judge Roberts opposed efforts to remedy discrimination on the basis of sex and race. He opposed measures to protect voting rights. He denigrated the right to privacy and a woman's right to choose. He wanted to allow Congress to strip away courts' jurisdiction over controversial subjects.
Although he has presented himself as a supporter of judicial restraint, I do not see enough evidence that Judge Roberts would show restraint when his own political commitments are at stake. In light of his past positions, I believe he had an affirmative obligation to make the case to those who might confirm him that he repudiates the positions that he had previously advocated in his professional career. He made a choice and refused to meet that obligation. I cannot support someone who I am not convinced will preserve the liberties and freedoms that are enshrined in our Constitution and our laws.
Please join me in fighting for the principles and values that each of us cherish. Contact your Senators and tell them to vote no on Judge Roberts' nomination.
Non-senator and Not Worth Listening To