A Grim Look at the Future
All Tied Up: Supremes Still Stuck at 4-4shudder
Washington - After the Supreme Court announced that it had deadlocked on yet another major case on Monday, Washington insiders were wondering this week just how long it would be before President Bush acceded to Senate demands for a cooperative process to replace retired Justice John Paul Stevens.
"We have made it clear to the President what we expect," Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Pat Leahy said. "We will not simply sit in the background and vote yes or no on his nominee. We expect to be part of the entire process. In the spirit of bipartisanship, I have forwarded to the White House a half dozen names that would be acceptable to the Democrat majority. But the President stubbornly insists on going his own way."
The then-86-year-old Stevens announced his retirement shortly after the 2006 elections, in which Democrats won both the House and the Senate. He officially left the Court on January 1, 2007. The President's first nominee to replace him never was granted a committee hearing, and withdrew her name from consideration. A month later, his second nominee was given a hearing, and voted down in committee by a unanimous Democrat majority.
Ralph Neas, President of People for the American Way, doesn't see the urgency.
"The American people spoke last November, and they said they don't want justices whose radical interpretation of the Constitution doesn't include so many of the new rights that judges have recognized over the years," Neas said. "If we have to leave that seat empty until we elect a Democrat President, that's exactly what we'll do."
Until then, or until the President and the Senate can come to an agreement, the Supreme Court will continue to operate shorthanded.
Thanks for scaring the crap out of me, Andrew at Confirm Them.