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Wednesday, June 21, 2006 

Lunch with Arlen

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter is taking the Supreme Court Justices to lunch. One by one, Specter is treating each of The Nine to lunch in the Senate dining room. What's on the menu? These topics...
They have discussed the administration of the courts, their confirmation hearings and one of his pet issues: bringing television cameras into the court chamber.

He has also grilled them about instances when the court has struck down laws by questioning what it called Congress's "method of reasoning." It was a concern Specter raised during the Supreme Court confirmation hearings he presided over months ago.
I have a feeling that the Justices were fairly critical of the confirmation hearings. At least I hope that they were. After watching the days of idiocy that Roberts and Alito had to sit through, I would hope that their colleagues spoke up.

Concerning the cameras... good luck, Senator. I just don't see it happening, not while Justice David "Over My Dead Body" Souter is still on the Court. The last thing he wants to be is a TV star. Justice Thomas also has concerns about the cameras, and I'd think that the rest of the Justices wouldn't push for cameras unless everyone was on board with the idea.

Specter is the kind of Senator that doesn't really believe that Congress has limited powers. He's not big on Commerce Clause restrictions or the federalism revival of the Rehnquist Court. When he started in on this topic during the confirmation hearings, I felt my eyes rolling back into my head. This is an issue that Specter just has wrong.

As a Justice Thomas fan, this part of the article jumped out at me...
Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), sitting a few tables away, joked that he was offended that Specter and Thomas didn't stop to greet him but then noted that he voted against Thomas's nomination.
Thomas still holds a serious grudge against many of the Senators for how he was treated during his confirmation hearings. Either he's still mad at Dodd, or he just can't stand looking at those goofy eyebrows.

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