Never satisfied

Never satisfied

There’s nothing like snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

Reading the commentary from pro-lifers and Catholics on various blogs about the nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Court, I’ve noticed a distinct tone from one group that wants to call this a betrayal by Bush. Never mind that we know very little about Roberts so far and what little we do know is almost all positive.

No, we must assume that because Roberts isn’t president of his local pro-life group and has not written dozens of op-eds against abortion and has not unconstitutionally legislated from the bench, then he must be a liberal pro-abort disguised as a conservatrive and that Bush is once again selling out pro-lifers.

But have any of these people stopped to consider that if Bush had nominated a firebrand pro-lifer like these people want that there would be no way in Hell for him to be confirmed by the Senate?

  • Finally, you comment.

    Huh? The news just came out an hour or so ago, DJP. Last I heard, Bettnett isn’t a 24/7 news outlet! wink

    Anyway, I’m cautiously optimistic. Back in ‘03 he (Roberts, not Dom) deemed Roe v. Wade the “settled law of the land” (my emphasis.)

    While I’m glad Father Pavone is “thrilled” (and Bill Cotter says: “So far: it looks good!”) I’m not dragging out the party hats just yet.

  • Just read that Roberts is a practicing Catholic.

    Bettnett isn’t a 24/7 news outlet but it certainly covers momumental issues affecting Catholics with great expediency.

  • Wow – a man who actually read the Constitution and a Catholic – I beg public forgivness for doubting GWB – this is outstanding news. Let the battle begin – Sabres Gentlemen! – bring it on Schumer.

  • I am not too sure of him. If you look at the bio on,_Jr

    In the section on “During a Confirmation Hearing” (for the nominee who lists himself as Catholic), you see it stated:

    In 1990, Roberts was arguing a case for the first Bush administration, on abortion, and stated that Roe v. Wade “was wrongly decided and should be overruled.”[3] In 2003, during his confirmation hearing for appointment to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Roberts responded to a senator’s question about Roe v. Wade: “Roe v. Wade is the settled law of the land…There is nothing in my personal views that would prevent me from fully and faithfully applying that precedent.” He said that his previous statement in 1990 was his client’s position, not his own. Roberts was subsequently approved by a unanimous vote of the Senate.

    Based on his statement he is no St. Thomas More, since he was only arguing against abortion because he client asked him to and he said “There is nothing in my personal views that would prevent me from fully and faithfully applying that precedent.”  Not something a Catholic would publicly attest too as their personal view on the subject.

  • Here’s an interesting fact:  THERE IS A SAINT JOHN ROBERTS

    Let us pray for his intercession, that if this John Roberts is the “Lord’s man”, that he will be confirmed.

  • As others have pointed out elsewhere, when Roberts said Roe was settled law and he would apply the precedent, he was saying that as an appeals court judge he had to apply the precedent set up by the Supreme Court.

    In other words, he said he would do his constitutional duty and not legislate from the bench, like all the liberal judges do.

    But as a Supreme Court justice, Roe is not settled, but is a precedent that could be overturned on legal and constitutional grounds.

    It is not the job of the courts to legislate, but to interpret. It is supposed to be the legislature’s job to legislate. We’ve gotten into this mess because of activist judges exceeding their constitutional authority. What we need are judges who know their duty and the bounds of their constitutional authority and abide by them.

  • Yes, let’s not go overboard because someone describes him as a “practicing Catholic”.  People have said the same thing about John Kerry.  And isn’t Anthony Kennedy a “practicing Catholic”?  What has HE done for the pro-life cause lately?  Or ever? 

    The thing that bothers me most about Roberts is that no one knows anything about him.  In that respect, he’s much like Kennedy, and that other rock-ribbed conservative, David Souter.

    Another gutless, “under the radar” pick.

    If I were a betting man, I’d lay you odds that Justice Roberts’ pro-business record of decisions will turn out to be a lot more fervent than his pro-life record, “practicing Catholic” or not.

  • “Another gutless, author_url>
    2005-07-21 06:03:59
    2005-07-21 10:03:59
    Please note on the Bios found at above.  John Roberts was co captain of his Hi Schoool football team and a wrestler.  My logic tells me that he respects the desenting positions of Whizzer White and Rhenquest in Roe v Wade. 

    Please let the Catholic Judge Judgers Leahy, Biden, Kennedy and Durbin know what Judie Brown means when she has [url=][/url] CRUSADERS spreading the word. ” YOU CAN’T BE CATHOLIC AND PRO ABORTION”.  They let Mahony know at the Mayors inauguration seremony at the Tajmahony.

  • How odd.  I’ve noticed a “distinct tone from one group” on those same blogs that wants to believe anything that the Bush II White House chooses to tell them.

    Today it is telling them that John Roberts is the embodiment of their hopes and dreams.  The Bush I White House said similar things about Souter.  The Reagan White House said the same thing about Sandra Day O’Connor and staunch Catholic Anthony Kennedy.

    How many Brooklyn Bridges are you folks looking to collect?

  • On one hand, Dom, there has been much disappointment in the Reagan/Bush I appointees to the Supremes. 

    But you are right.  There are those purists who entertain no concept of political realities and who deny that Judge Roberts may be the best blessing whom we could hope for on th Supreme Court.  And considered a good, honest and thoughtful man.

    But aren’t these the some of same folks who closely scrutinize just how exactly faithful a priest is when he celebrates mass…looking for any nuance of potential error?

    Much of the time they are just harmless, boring folks who now have the Internet.

  • It is one thing to be disappointed in an appointment that has proven to be bad. It is another thing to assume without evidence that any choice that isn’t Judie Brown of the American Life League is automatically a betrayal.

    I’m not saying it can’t be a bad choice, but I am saying maybe we should wait and see what the guy says and does before we lynch him.

    Reflexive anti-Bushism is as a bad as reflexive pro-Bushism.

  • I can’t believe this!  You folks should look outside the RC blogs.  Roberts is a Catholic and his wife is Executive Vice President of Feminists for Life according to this website:

    That pretty much floats my boat!  Also, the wogs at Redstate have stated that Roberts was recommended by Rehnquist.  This could mean that someone like Garza or Janice Brown will be given Rehnquist’s seat.  That is a horrible scenario, I guess.

    Mon Dieu, Je Vais Faire Toutes Mes Actions Pour l’Amour de Vous!

  • Oh sure, fair play and all that.  That’s the ticket.

    The real point here, is that you and I have no notion of what Justice Roberts will do when pro-life issues come before the court.  His professed faith does not provide a sure clue.  His wife’s activities do not provide a sure clue.  His record does not provide a sure clue.

    Why, then, the jubilance?

    Few people had any doubt about what Ginsberg was going to do about pro-life issues when she was going through the confirmation process.  Breyer may not have been Lawrence Tribe, but Planned Parenthood and the shrews at NOW didn’t seem too worried.

    I agree, it is POSSIBLE that Roberts may turn out to be just fine.  But, considering that we have a Republican house, a Republican senate, and a Republican president who relied on this issue to keep his preppie butt in the White House, and who insisted he was willing to spend his political capital on it, could we not have done better than a relative non-entity?  Especially since similar non-entities have panned out so poorly?

  • This guy is a cinch to be confirmed and no amount of carping from the understandably gun-shy pro-life crowd will have any effect whatsoever except, perhaps, to accelerate any tendency to drift leftward in the DC cocktail circuit that Judge Roberts might manifest.  I think that the smart thing for the pro-life community to be doing now is to make old John feel loved and supported by people who act like real Christians and not a bunch of whiney fanatics.

  • We definitely do know how Roberts will vote because his record tells us he’s a strict constructionist. He will do his constitutional duty and interpret the Constitution.

    You can live in “Ideal World” where we can get everything we want just by asking for it, but in the real world politics is the business of compromising just enough so that you end up with more than the other guy gets.

    Is that the way it should be? No. Is it the way it is? Yes. Is stamping our feet going to change that? No.

    Every single pro-life and conservative group applauds this nomination, including the American Life League which doesn’t compromise one iota on any pro-life issue. Just as tellingly, every pro-abortion group hates Roberts.

    That’s good enough for me.

  • “people who act like real Christians . . .”

    Well said!  I’ll bet you fast twice a week and give tithes too!

  • “peterdamien”—You’ve spent too long submerged in bile.  You’re over-marinated with cynicism.  Come up out of the pickle barrel and dry off a while, please!

    You know, I’m as pro-life and conservative as they come; it almost cost me ordination.  Yet I get sick of hearing the constant carping and negativity that comes, not from the angry Left, but from the “we’ve been burned so many times that we’re never going to trust anybody” Right.

    Do me a favor, would ya?  I have enough acid reflux disease from dealing with the vituperative agents of the Culture of Death.  I’m already sick to my stomach watching the faces frozen in hate on the pro-abortion Left.  Don’t poison my well, too.

    BTW, do YOU fast twice a week and tithe?  If not, don’t presume to attack others on that basis.  If you do, why are you looking to defame others who don’t?  Will that encourage them to do so?

    Put a sock in it.

  • Peter,

    Take it from one who knows: being bitter is no way to live.

    One thing that works for me when I get too rapped up in the world with its 24/7 news cycle is to get well away from it and take a trip or read a good book or, best of all, spend some time before our Lord.  He will take care of the world in your absence, and if you experience is anything like mine, you will may be surprised at how little you have missed.

  • Perfect.  Take a snide swipe on the way out.

    John Hearn’s right—bitterness only eats up the vessel in which it’s contained.

    Somebody remind me when I come up bitter sometime in the future.  Please?

  • I won’t be satisfied with the political process until my country stops killing babies.  And I won’t stop putting pressure on the President to be pro-life until he gets out of office, if only because there are plenty of people pressuring him the other way.

    John Roberts looks like a step in the right direction, but looks can be deceiving, and people can disappoint you.  Bush knows more about John Roberts than we do, and he made his decision based on that information.  As such, I will hold Bush and his party responsible should Roberts turn out less-than-perfect on stopping abortion and overturning Roe.  We’ll find out when Roberts starts to rule form the bench.

    In the meantime, I’m going to support Roberts’s confirmation.  There’s nothing whatsoever in his record that we know of (so far) that should give pro-lifers reason to oppose this nomination.  And in fact I know of no pro-lifer who has.

  • “Roe v. Wade is the settled law of the land. … it’s a little more than settled. It was reaffirmed in the face of a challenge … There’s nothing in my personal views that would prevent me from fully and faithfully applying that precedent,” Roberts said in response to a question from Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill.

    Does this quote cause anyone concern? What about Ann Coulter’s disappointment in the nomination? The fact remains that conservative prolife Republican presidents have given us 7 of our 9 justices and we still don’t have a prolife majority.

  • Peterdamien, Sandra Day O’Connor’s nomination was opposed in 1981 by Judie Brown of the American Life League.  O’Connor’s legislative record as an Arizona Senator showed she was clearly pro-abortion.  Judie Brown is now calling for all pro-lifers to “be prepared to respond to the attacks by pro-abortion forces to ensure that the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee and eventually, the full U.S. Senate, give Judge Roberts and all judicial nominees a fair, honest hearing”. 

    Mary Alexander, there’s an argument to be made that we should be concerned about that line.  There’s another argument that we shouldn’t be concerned, that because he was nominated to the Appeals Court, he “had” to say that. 

    Whether there’s any reason to be concerned or not, we’ll only find out how he really thinks when he gets to the Supreme Court and rules.  If he rules in favor of Roe, then as far as I’m concerned, pro-lifers can consider the Electing Republicans Strategy to be terminated with prejudice.  It will be back to the drawing board, probably with the Constitution Party.

  • “keep his preppie butt in the White House,” ??? Odd turn of phrase, that.  Explain, please.

    As opposed to a french boarding schooled,  member of Skull and Bones, pseudo-gigolo, latter-day botoxed member of the Senate who has yet to sponsor any meaningful legislation in his august career and used his wife’s cash for his failed trip to the White House? An odd turn of phrase indeed. Feel free to ramble on, son.

  • Both Kennedy and O’Connor were conservatives with a “but”—they would accept the ratcheting of liberal judge created “rights” which were legislated by the Warren Court.  The GWB appointed justices will regard Griswald, Roe, and the rest as abberations, reverse them, and let the states decide.

    As for Ann Coulter, I think this is a little attention grabbing on her part (not that’s there’s anything wrong with that)—a lot of conservatives I trust and Ann trusts have called Roberts a “non-Souter”, so Ann’s suspicions are suspect.

  • >>if Bush had nominated a firebrand pro-lifer like these people want that there would be no way in Hell for him to be confirmed by the Senate?

    Of course that’s an extreme characterization.

    What people like myself were looking for—ideally—was someone like Emilio Garza, Janice Roberts Brown, or Michael Luttig.  People with a long, consistent, verifiable judicial record so we know where they stand on a wide range of constitutional issues, including Roe.  Not Frank Pavone.  Not Alan Keyes.  Respected jurists with impeccable track records.

    Yes, Roberts sounds good and should be easily confirmed.  I’m happy with the nomination.

    But I would have preferred to know with 99% surety that a nominee would rule a certain way on Roe (et cetera), than be 90% sure plus a bunch of “trust me, I know him”s.  Is it really so objectionable that people are unwilling to take such recommendations on faith?

    Are you really suggesting that Garza, Brown, and Luttig would have no chance in hell of being confirmed? 

  • How long did it take to get Brown on the appeals court? She never would have made it to SCOTUS. I don’t think Garaz would have made it either. I don’t know much about Luttig, but if he’s likes the other two his chances would have been similar.

    But we do have 99% surety that Roberts is a strict constructionist (as much as we can be about anyone before he is confirmed), and since he’s a strict constructionist he can only rule one way on blatant unconstitutional overreaching like Roe.

    Yet, if we wanted instead to have Roberts out there chanting “Hey, ho, Roe must go!” do you really think he’d be confirmed?

  • Your opinion that Brown and Garza are unconfirmable is seriously uninformed—but not surprising coming from someone who doesn’t know much about Luttig. 

    Instead of attacking anything that conflicts with your predetermined position, you might consider laying stubborness aside for a second.  You have painted yourself into a foolishly conceived corner where highly regarded potential SC nominees cannot be confirmed.  What will you say when Brown is nominated to replace Rehnquist (let’s say) and gets 58 votes to confirm? 

    Your opinion is just that, an opinion, and in the severe minority in this case.  And insisting that everyone be 100% satisfied with the Roberts nomination or they’re fools, attacking those who like the nomination but think there were better options (is that not a valid opinion?)—why?  Just ….. why?

  • First, my opinion on Brown and Garza are not uninformed. That I did not offer one on Luttig shows that I don’t offer uninformed opinions. My statement about Brown is based on how difficult it was to get her confirmed for the post she’s in now. Is it likely that getting her on the Supreme Court will be less difficult?

    Second, of course my opinion is just an opinion. Where did I say that it is an uncontrovertible fact that whatever I say is what must and will happen? This is a blog, for crying out loud. Don’t get your knickers in a twist.

    I’m not insisting that everyone love Roberts without condition. I’m saying that leaping to the conclusion that Roberts is a sign of Bush 42 pulling a Bush41-Souter and betraying the pro-lifers is premature until we actually know more about Roberts.

    I’m also saying that it’s all fine and good to wish we could get a rock-solid pro-lifer on the court. (I’d love to see Mary Ann Glendon there. Heck, I’d love to see Robert Bork nominated again.) But wishing for the ideal is not the same as offering a realistic proposal.

    The Republicans may have a majority in the Senate, but too many of them are just too liberal on judgesm/blog/index.php?”>Southern Appeal like him too:

    President Bush certainly came through for judicial conservatives tonight. Roberts is a solid originalist/textualist, and he will make for an incredible justice.

    Oh, and he will be confirmed.


    2005-07-19 19:06:05
    2005-07-19 23:06:05

    2005-07-19 20:39:57
    2005-07-20 00:39:57
    Finally, you comment.