So I said I wouldn't post much about the Alito hearings. But I couldn't resist linking to this two-part post by law professor Robert Gordon at TPMCafe. In it, he presents an extensive argument against the merits of Alito's confirmation.
A summary of Gordon's summary:
- Alito won't own up to what are apparently his core beliefs. He recently claimed, essentially, that one can't take certain earlier writings of his seriously since he was currying favor with a potential employer.
- Alito's judicial record is that of "an activist who works steadily to push the law well beyond conventional boundaries of precedent."
- Alito's (and Bush's) agenda for the courts is not popular, requiring them to hide their intentions by avoiding substantive answers to legitimate questions.
- "[E]verything in his background and record suggests he is likely to be extremely deferential to executive power and reluctant to assert a strong judicial role in checking it.
- Alito is regularly hostile to claims of discrimination on the basis of race, sex, age or disability. ... [H]e's even hostile to Congress when it tries to do something about discrimination.
Gordon, of course, has substantial detail behind these points in his posts. His conclusion: "If [Alito] is unwilling firmly and forthrightly to declare his independence from the ideologies and executive authorities he has served his entire career, the Democrats should try to keep him off the Court by filibuster."
I agree. Since Democrats and progressives lost the last election, this may not be a winning battle, but it is one we need to fight. If Alito is confirmed, the consequences will be around long past the time when the results of the 2004 election are ancient history.