Gorsuch had things in his background to make us concerned, and it is too early still to have all concerns set aside about him. More so is our concern about the choice of Brett Kavanaugh announced by President Trump last night. Read the DLH commentary of a couple of days ago here.
The conservative movement is not totally on board with the choice. At least one group is calling for opposition. The points made by American Family Association are of concern but we will benefit from context supplied by other responsible and knowledgeable observers. I doubt that they are playing any sort of good cop bad cop game. The concerns are certainly legitimate, but again total context and the free rein of SCOTUS membership are important.
Here is a collection of commentaries good ,bad and wary.
From American Family Association:
U.S. Supreme Court Alert: Tell Senators to oppose Judge Kavanaugh
Monday, July 9, 2018
President Donald Trump announced the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill the vacancy of Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Judge Kavanaugh is simply the wrong nominee-even a bad nominee. Based on his written opinions, Judge Kavanaugh has demonstrated a deficiency in a constitutional judicial philosophy of a limited judiciary. Some of his decisions may have been favorable, but several of his opinions about those decisions contain problematic language.
Although Judge Kavanaugh decided correctly in court case Priests for Life v. U.S. Dep’t of Health & Human Services, he wrote a moderate opinion disagreeing with the Priests on a foundational constitutional religious liberty principle.
As a result of Obamacare, the faith-based organization Priests for Life and others argued that the government could not compel or force them to provide contraception and abortion causing drugs for their employees. Judge Kavanaugh unnecessarily conceded in his opinion that the government has a compelling interest to force religious organizations to provide contraceptives and abortifacients for employees. Kavanaugh’s concession created a dangerous precedent.
There are also concerns with his opinion related to illegal alien female minors who are expecting but also seeking an abortion in the United States. Other concerns relate to his writings on Obamacare. It’s been argued that Judge Kavanaugh provided the roadmap to uphold the Obama Administration’s healthcare overreach at the Supreme Court. Judge Kavanaugh is said to provide the legal argument for Chief Justice to save Obamacare by calling the mandatory insurance a tax.
Judge Kavanaugh’s reasoning on religious liberty, Obamacare and issues concerning life have proven to be of major concern. For these reasons and more, urge your senators to firmly oppose the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh as a Justice on the United States Supreme Court.
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Tim Wildmon, President
American Family Association
From Jay Sekulow (who was associated with Kavanaugh) at American Center for Law and Justice :
The Supreme Court is at stake. This is urgent.
President Trump’s nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, is a superb choice. He is an extremely qualified conservative jurist.
Judge Kavanaugh embraces the philosophy of our Founders – an unwavering commitment to the rule of law and the Constitution.
Already the Left is in full panic mode. The biased and vitriolic political attacks on the nominee are already beginning. Planned Parenthood already says “abortion . . . is on the line.” They will stop at nothing to defeat Judge Kavanaugh.
We’re aggressively mobilizing on Capitol Hill to ensure Judge Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court. This will be the fight of a lifetime.
This isn’t just one Supreme Court case at stake. It’s a fight for every Supreme Court case for decades to come. We urgently need your support today.
We’ve just taken on a brand new case at the Supreme Court – your free speech is at stake. Another case could defund and decimate Big Abortion. But our resources are majorly drained.
Today your Tax-Deductible gift will be doubled, dollar-for-dollar. $5 becomes $10; $20 becomes $40 in defense of the Constitution at the Supreme Court.
ACLJ Chief Counsel
From Jazz Shaw at Hot Air:
The big show last night turned out to be even less melodramatic than the low bar hoped for by Democrats. None of the picks on Trump’s shortlist were all that controversial, though one might argue that Amy Coney Barrett’s short tenure on the bench was a cause for concern. But still, despite the fact that there will always be some grumbling from the peanut gallery, Brett Kavanaugh was easily a solid choice for the President to make because he comes with some insurance policies baked into the cake.
The Democrats are obviously going to oppose Kavanaugh almost entirely across the board and will try to make life difficult for him during the coming confirmation hearings, but they’ll have questions to answer in terms of how hard they want to hit him. One of the first entries in the hurdles they face came almost immediately from Yale Law School professor Akhil Reed Amar, writing at the New York Times, A Liberal’s Case for Brett Kavanaugh.
The nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to be the next Supreme Court justice is President Trump’s finest hour, his classiest move. Last week the president promised to select “someone with impeccable credentials, great intellect, unbiased judgment, and deep reverence for the laws and Constitution of the United States.” In picking Judge Kavanaugh, he has done just that.
In 2016, I strongly supported Hillary Clinton for president as well as President Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Judge Merrick Garland. But today, with the exception of the current justices and Judge Garland, it is hard to name anyone with judicial credentials as strong as those of Judge Kavanaugh. He sits on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (the most influential circuit court) and commands wide and deep respect among scholars, lawyers and jurists.
Ouch. When a Yale Law professor and Hillary Clinton supporter comes out of the gate with that sort of praise, liberals are walking on quicksand if they try to paint Kavanaugh as a monster. If anything, it should be conservatives who get nervous, wondering if another David Souter has just slipped under the flaps of the tent.
From the conservative side of the aisle, Professor Glenn Reynolds found Kavanaugh to be the “safe pick” with a “gold-plated resume.”
After more than the usual buildup, orchestrated by a master of reality TV, President Trump has chosen his nominee for the Supreme Court seat being vacated by Anthony Kennedy. And he’s playing it safe.
Trump’s pick, Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, is a graduate of Yale Law School, has taught at Harvard, Yale, and Georgetown, and served in President George W. Bush’s administration before being named to the Court of Appeals. Like Trump’s prior nominee, Neil Gorsuch, Kavanaugh has a gold-plated resume and Federalist Society credentials. And, also like Gorsuch, he’s a former law clerk to Justice Kennedy. (And he was hired to teach at Harvard Law School by then-Dean, now Justice, Elena Kagan).
What is it that really makes Kavanaugh the “safe bet” for Trump? There’s probably no bigger factor than the presumption that both Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski are going to be comfortable with him. And if the President can lock down those two votes in the Senate, everything the Democrats do or say will be entirely sound and fury, signifying nothing.
Some of the early reactions coming from the cable news talking heads make it sound as if the Democrats are out of luck as well. I tuned into Morning Joe this morning, fully expecting to see Joe and Mika rending their clothing and wailing about the end times but it was nothing close to that. They were treating the pick as almost a done deal. A few exceptions cropped up, such as the paper Kavanaugh wrote in 2009 in which he suggested that sitting presidents shouldn’t be open to investigations and trials. Scarborough picked up on that, asking if Kavanaugh would assure Senators that he would recuse himself in any case that involves investigations into the President. (That’s a fairly ridiculous suggestion since the judge has never been involved in a specific case relating to Trump.)
But that doesn’t mean that the Democrats are going to bow out without putting on a show. Joe and Mika brought on Jim Vandehei, who said Democrats would be “crazy not to… try to bring this guy down.” But is that really the case? There are at least three red-state Democrats who may be facing a choice of either voting for Kavanaugh or surrendering their seats to the GOP (assuming they can hang onto them at all). Will Chuck Schumer really put the whip to Heidi Heitkamp, Joe Donnelly, Claire McCaskill or Joe Manchin to vote against Kavanaugh? If he does and some of them go on to lose their seats, Schumer would need to start watching out for his own security in the Senate Minority Leader office.
If everyone can just manage to resist the urge to form up the GOP circular firing squad, this should really be a done deal at this point. Let the Democrats put on their show over the summer and then schedule a vote. It really doesn’t have to be any harder than that.
Also Helen Alvare – lobbyist for pro-life causes writing for Women Speak for Themselves:
The whole world knows now that Judge Brett Kavanaugh has been nominated to the US Supreme Court. Of course, it is impossible to predict whether he will be confirmed to the Court, or what he will do when he gets there.
Here are three quick points to keep in mind:
1. Good news: he is known for interpreting the Constitution according to its text, and not according to his personal opinions. This is an important change from Justice Kennedy, whose opinions, especially concerning the family, were about his personal views, and not about what the Constitution said. Of course, the Constitution does not contain a right to abortion, and it would be great if five Justices would say so!
2. Whether they believe it or not (or whether they are just trying to quell hysteria on opponents’ part), I notice that conservative supporters of Kavanaugh continually say that, when he is a Justice, Roe v. Wade (which made abortion legal in all 50 states) will not be overruled. . . .
Set forth for your convenient analysis, as always, comments welcome: