The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Fun with the SCOTUS

After reading my share of posts on the latest 5-4 decision to make conservatives ecstatic and the rest of us very, very concerned, I decided that this quote from Justice Ginsburg's dissenting opinion, summed it up ably:

The Court's hostility to the right Casey and Roe secured is not concealed. Throughout, the opinion refers to obstetrician-gynecologists not by the title of their medical specialties, but by the pejorative label "abortion doctors."

I sure can't wait for the day when progressive America can say "I told ya so" and actually enjoy it. As Tim Grieve notes, there was no outcome less surprising than GOP-appointed justices turning out to be ideological zombies.

If you're looking for some kind of silver lining in today's Supreme Court decision restricting abortion rights, this is about as close as you're going to get: While John Roberts and Samuel Alito sided, predictably, with the conservative majority, they didn't join Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia in declaring that the Supreme Court's "abortion jurisprudence, including Casey and Roe v. Wade, has no basis in the Constitution." (. . .)

In 1990, Roberts signed a legal brief in which he argued, on behalf of the first Bush administration, that Roe was "wrongly decided and should be overruled." In 1985, Alito argued, in a memo to his Justice Department colleagues, that they shouldn't advocate a repeal of Roe, but only because he thought an incremental approach would be more effective in reaching that result eventually. "I find this approach preferable to a frontal assault on Roe v. Wade," he wrote then. "It has most of the advantages of a brief devoted to the overruling of Roe v. Wade: it makes our position clear, does not even tacitly concede Roe's legitimacy, and signals that we regard the question as live and open."

Judicial activism. At this point, I'm pretty exhausted by the infallibility of the 21st-century maxim "If Republicans accuse others of it, they're doing it themselves."