Thursday, March 26, 2009

Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings (09/12/05)

Will John G. Roberts -- the first nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court since 1994 -- be remembered for serving on America's highest court, or as a footnote in its history books? In the last few decades, some candidates have sailed through the process with little controversy, while others haven't fared as well. In 1968, Lyndon Johnson nominated Justice Abe Fortas for Chief Justice, but his nomination was filibustered and withdrawn. In 1970, G. Harrold Carswell was dismissed as not being distinguished enough for the Court. In defense of the judge, Senator Roman Hruska of Nebraska asked, "Even if he is mediocre, there are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers. They are entitled to a little representation, aren't they?" The most controversial nominee in recent years was Judge Robert Bork, whose name has had the dubious distinction of becoming a verb. Following the judge's unsuccessful nomination in 1987, "to Bork" now means "to seek to obstruct a political appointment or selection." Whether Judge Roberts becomes a justice or a figure of speech, only the Senate can say.

No comments: