A letter to National Review columnist David Frum:

I graduated from law school this past May, and am currently a **th Circuit law clerk. I have always been a member of the Federalist Society, and have devoted much of my recent spare time to working on several law review articles that, while on subjects esoteric to non-attorneys (such as subject matter jurisdiction priority over personal jurisdiction), remain important to the proper position of the courts in our governmental system.

I'm considering abandoning them after watching how such advocacy often turns into a negative blotch on an attorney's resume and a disqualifier for any high level judiciary or executive service ...

Since the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court, the most fascinating political site on the web has been Confirm Them, a weblog created by Republican activists to support the confirmation of President Bush's judicial appointments.

Miers has made a mockery of the site's name, splitting conservative contributors into angry pro- and anti-Miers camps. They were gearing up for a fight to get an openly conservative jurist with an established track record past the Senate, but instead have been handed another stealth nominee whose judicial philosophy must be taken on faith.

No conservative had the White House counsel on their short list of prospective choices, according to George Will in one of the greatest insults in the history of punditry:

... there is no reason to believe that Miers's nomination resulted from the president's careful consultation with people capable of such judgments. If 100 such people had been asked to list 100 individuals who have given evidence of the reflectiveness and excellence requisite in a justice, Miers's name probably would not have appeared in any of the 10,000 places on those lists.

Snap! You go, George!

Stealth nominees have a strategic short-term advantage that makes it difficult to keep them off the court, so it's likely that Miers will be confirmed unless President Bush withdraws the nomination, which ranks in probability somewhere between "no chance in hell" and "never in a million years." The president's so stubborn that were he captain of the Titanic, he would have run the ship into a second iceberg to prove he meant to hit the first one.

There's a long-term price for filling the Supreme Court in secrecy, as this clerk's letter illustrates. Conservatives have built an intellectual foundation for their interpretation of constitutional law over a quarter century, as embodied by the Federalist Society and the embrace of originalism.

Neither Bush appointment has publicly nurtured this movement during their careers. In some instances, they've even distanced themselves from it. When asked her most admired Supreme Court justice, Miers did not choose Justices Scalia or Thomas. When John Roberts showed up in a Federalist Society membership directory, the White House issued a quick denial, stating that he "has no recollection of being a member."

Roger Pilon, a Cato Institute vice president and society member, was stunned to see Roberts run away from the association as if Joseph McCarthy was after him. "Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Federalist Society?"

If you're a 25-year-old conservative who graduated Harvard Law first in your class and clerks for Chief Justice Roberts, do you spend the next 20 years contributing to law journals, actively participating in the Federalist Society and seeking a judgeship from which you can foster conservative jurisprudence?

Clearly, if you have supreme ambitions, the answer is no. By choosing Roberts and Miers, Bush has publicly affirmed the notion that judicial conservatives believe in an ideology that dare not speak its name. Friends of Clarence are the new Friends of Dorothy, forced to develop furtive code phrases to seek each other out -- just like how President Bush namedrops Dred Scott as a double-secret shout out to anti-abortion activists.

"I couldn't help but overhear what you said about Griswold v. Connecticut at the bar, friend. Want to take this someplace more private so we can disrespect stare decisis away from all of these living constitutionalists?"

Harriet Miers is the best thing to happen to liberals since the repeal of anti-sodomy laws. I hope she has a sister.

-- Rogers Cadenhead

Comments

"The president's so stubborn that were he captain of the Titanic, he would have run the ship into a second iceberg to prove he meant to hit the first one."

That's classic!


 

"The president's so stubborn that were he captain of the Titanic, he would have run the ship into a second iceberg to prove he meant to hit the first one."

It's more than classic, it's profound. It should be printed on greeting cards and mailed to every citizen.


 

Heh, yeah, I have been repeating that to everyone I talk to since reading it this morning.


 

That quote from George Will is funny, but since when is that bow-tied prig, who lunched so often with
"Astrological" Nancy Reagan, qualified to declaim who is capable of judgements about Supreme court nominees?

When will the "conservatives" (a misnomer, anyway) realize that the imperial wanna-be George W. Bush is not in their camp?

This country is presently under triumvirate rule: Cheney, Rove, and Bush(?), with corporate interests controlling the deus ex machina of Rupert Murdoch's false Image.

By the way, Cheney and Murdoch are good friends (naturally).

Bush and his totalitarian thugs are testing the limits of the U.S. Constitution, to see how many of our rights can be wrested from us.

This administration ardently desires to neuter the fifth amendment, vide Jose Padilla.


 

"I couldn't help but overhear what you said about Griswold v. Connecticut at the bar, friend. Want to take this someplace more private so we can disrespect stare decisis away from all of these living constitutionalists?"

That's pure gold, Jerry! :)


 

I read an excerpt of your post at ConfirmThem.com, and even though you're a liberal and I'm a conservative, I had to come by and congratulate you for your brilliant wordplay. That Titanic thing is the BEST, (and very, very true) and I'll be saying it to everyone who will listen - keep a good paper trail, you may want to have proof of its origin when it gets into Bartlett's Quotations. And the Friends of Clarence, too...perfect!


 

This issue is very interesting due to the fact that very few people actually know what "Advise and Consent" means in regards to the Senate's responsibility.

The Senate is simply to decide whether the person nominated has the credentials (formal education and, or experience) to perform the job, or not. They either advise the president that they found the candidate lacking in education/experience, or they consent to the nomination. The Senate does not either confirm or deny confirmation; since that is the sole responsibility of the president.

Also, in that regard, it is not a situation where the 'filibuster' is to be used, since the Senate by vote either advises or consents -- they cannot stop the actual confirmation, and a 'filibuster' is, or was designed, to block legislation -- not deny any appointment.

If the president confirms a nomination against the advise of the Senate, then the public has been made aware of the dispute and any misfeasance on the part of the confirmed nominee falls soley on the head of the president, and could even lead to impeachment of the nominee and, or the president, himself; depending on the severity of any criminal action(s) by the confirmed candidate.

That's all. . .


 

You should tell the "advise and consent" stuff to Robert Bork...


 

Just like Friends of Dorothy?

That is an AWESOME comparison, seriously. I love it.


 

Chris says, "You should tell the "advise and consent" stuff to Robert Bork..."

I think this is a very valid point, in relation to "advise and consent" and how the Democrats have attempted to change the processes of government to suit their collective wills.

Indeed, and as was seen with Roberts, when the Democrats/Republican role was reversed, they counseled Ginsburg not to answer questions which they felt no compunction in asking Bork, later. Then, of course, Thomas.

However, the vote was not filibustered inappropriately and Thomas was confirmed, while Bork was not -- the process worked, because the Senate's 'advise' was followed. . .

The real difference is in the the appearance that the Democrats are not interested in bipartisanship and display their intransigence for all to see. . .


 

Tadowe says "The real difference is in the the appearance that the Democrats are not interested in bipartisanship and display their intransigence for all to see. . ."

You can easily find examples of Republicans doing the same thing. For example, the attempt at modifying rules to stop the fillibuster process for judicial appointments. You can bet that Republicans would be fighting tooth-add-nail to fight that if it were introduced by Democrats while they were in power.

Each party may have a different philosophy, but trying to limit the opposition's power through petty political games will always be something they have in common.


 

Bill says, "You can easily find examples of Republicans doing the same thing. For example, the attempt at modifying rules to stop the fillibuster process for judicial appointments. You can bet that Republicans would be fighting tooth-add-nail to fight that if it were introduced by Democrats while they were in power."

Lol, it was proposed by Democrats in 1995.' Besides, as I mentioned, there is no 'right' to filibuster during "Advise and Consent." See this link for background:

The Senate Is Supposed to Advise And Consent, Not Obstruct and Delay

"Each party may have a different philosophy, but trying to limit the opposition's power through petty political games will always be something they have in common."

Political 'maneuvering' within the rules is perfectly acceptable, however, the Democrats are attempting to get around the rules by using the filibuster for procedural issues, and using tactics which are inappropriate; in order to have a minority dictate the outcome, not the democratic majority.

Like saying, "My way, or no way at all!"


 

The discussion of filibusters is a continuation of the trend of the last 2-4 decades. Each party takes conflict to a new level of extremes irrespective of the possibility the precedent would turn against them. Ultimately the rules of the Senate are whatever 50 or 51 Senators say they are - the Constitution makes no reference to Senate rules. If the nuclear option is used now it will be used again for other reasons. Ultimately, if things keep going like they have gone we will have a Supreme Court of 99 judges from repeated court packing.


 

Wayne says, "Ultimately the rules of the Senate are whatever 50 or 51 Senators say they are - the Constitution makes no reference to Senate rules."

Well, I agree that the rule, in regards to filibuster, is up to the Senate to decide. However, in the use of the filibuster to delay&obstruct, it is a misuse of the process, and which is very cogently explained in the link I posted, above.

The Democrats are attempting to deny the Advise and Consent responsibility of the Senate by not voting, as they are required to do under a democratic system of government, and the rules. Hardly a situation where one might be justified in calling them the Democratic party. . .


 

While in the minority, Republicans used the threat of a filibuster to check the power of the majority. I don't know how fair it is or whether the framers would have approved, but it's been the rules of the game for many years, so I don't fault the Democrats for using it now that they are the minority.

I think it was a greater offense against the established rules of politics for DeLay to push through a mid-decade redistricting in Texas. That move was responsible for all of the Republican pickups in the House in 2004.


 

Rogers says, "While in the minority, Republicans used the threat of a filibuster to check the power of the majority."

Well, I am not a fan of either party's attempts to misuse the process. However, in 1968, the filibuster was threatened as a bipartisan effort; notwithstanding the misuse of the process it represented.

"I don't know how fair it is or whether the framers would have approved, but it's been the rules of the game for many years, so I don't fault the Democrats for using it now that they are the minority."

It isn't 'the rules of the game,' and as the link I posted, above, clearly outlines!

"I think it was a greater offense against the established rules of politics for DeLay to push through a mid-decade redistricting in Texas. That move was responsible for all of the Republican pickups in the House in 2004."

BS. There is no requirement on when redistricting can, or cannot take place and the Texas State rule(s) were written by Democrats so that they could redistrict when it suited them to do so!

. . .and I believe you know that very well. . .coming from Richardson, or thereabouts. . .


 

All I know about the Texas redistricting is that once-per-census redistricting has been the norm throughout the U.S., and if that breaks because of DeLay's naked power grab, legislatures throughout the country will lose considerable time to dealing with these stunts.


 

Ha! I love that Titanic line.


 

Rogers crabs, "All I know about the Texas redistricting is that once-per-census redistricting has been the norm throughout the U.S. . . ."

So? The Democrats performed a redistricting in Texas in 1990, and there is the 2000 Census to consider -- or are you just pretending to being stupid, in order to fool the 'sheep?'

". . . and if that breaks because of DeLay's naked power grab, legislatures throughout the country will lose considerable time to dealing with these stunts"

It wasn't a 'power grab' when the Democrats gerrymandered the state in order to maintain white, rural control of Texas, at the expense of suburban minority increases in population? That cost minority representation about four seats in Congress, Rogers. . .

Besides, look what you are doing -- completely misdirecting that the Democrats are constantly trying to manipulate the processes of government vis a vis court nominations; while you whine about Republicans doing this-and-that in Texas!

Wake up!


 

Dustin says, "Ha! I love that Titanic line."

The 'sheep' are easily amused, Rogers. Quick think up some more! How about some comparisons of Republicans to Nazis, eh? That'll amuse the hell out of the flock. . .


 

I don't know why I bother responding to your comments, Tadowe. I have never compared Republicans as Nazis, or said anything close to it. Nor has anyone else in this discussion.


 

Rogers asks, "I don't know why I bother responding to your comments, Tadowe."

Well, in this case, it allows you to avoid responding to my rebuttal directed at what you did say, in your attempt to misdirect comments about the acitivities of Democrats in 'bending' the rules; as well as claiming that Republicans were conducting some kind of putsch in Texas as concerns redistricting.

"I have never compared Republicans as Nazis, or said anything close to it. Nor has anyone else in this discussion."

No, I must say that I haven't seen any such direct comment(s) from you -- except that any 'naked power play' might be compared to any such historical 'power plays' by other 'groups.'

Ironically, it is exactly what we were discussing is happening with the Democrat leadership and their efforts to force minority rule over our democratic processes (federally and in the great state of Tejas, too.) I'm sure the humor in that will escape those who might attempt a propaganda pogrom to revile someone for their lack of intelligence and have their dupes and stooges repeat it ad nauseam; attempting idle jokes to accomplish their goal(s.)

How's that?


 

State of U.S. courts. . .

Consider the following:

Open Letter

October 23, 2005

United States Judicial Conference
Administrative Office
of the United States Courts
Thurgood Marshall Federal Judiciary Building
One Columbus Circle, N.E. 20544

Mr. Albert N. Moskowitz
United States Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Ave, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530

Mrs. Mary Beth Buchanan
U.S. Attorney Western Pennsylvania
United States Department of Justice
U.S. Post Office and Court House
700 Grant Street, Suite 4000
Pittsburgh, Pa 15219

United States Judicial Conference
Chief Justice United States Supreme Court
c/o Mr. William K. Sutter, Clerk
Office of the Clerk
c/o Mrs. Pamala Talkin
Marshall of the Court
No. 1 First Street, N.E.
Washington, DC 20543

Third Circuit Judicial Council
United States Court of Appeals
c/o Toby D. Slawsky, Esq.
Circuit Executive
22409 U.S. Courthouse
601 Market Street
Philadelphia, Pa 19106-1790

Chief Justice
United States Court of Appeals
for the Third Circuit
c/o Toby D. Slawsky, Esq.
Circuit Executive
22409 U.S. Courthouse
601 Market Street
Philadelphia, Pa 19106-1790

RE: Formal Complaint (filed under the Judicial Improvements Act of 2002
28 U.C.S. Sections 351-364); Formal Complaint (filed under 28 U.S.C.
Section 372(c)); and Request for Investigation (pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
Section 604)

Dear All:

Please be advise of the following criminal activity.

On or about October 11, 2005, Marcia M. Waldron, Clerk for the Third Circuit Court of Appeals forwarded a copy of an Order (No. 05-3702) that, among other, requested a copy of the district court docket entries. On October 21, 2005, I purchased a copy of the docket entries (No. 03-1400) and forwarded such to the Third Circuit. However, I noticed the August 16, 2005, entry entered by JSP that advised the clerk's office couldn't locate documents #16, #64 and #86. That is, the clerk office wasn't able to transmitted the complete record (No. 03-1400) to the Third Circuit.

In short, previously I submitted unequivocal evidence of perjury (violation of Section 1746 Title 28, United States Code) to the Department of Justice, federal court and others. Since my request for a formal investigation, the evidence (documents #64 and #86) was somehow removed from the official court file.

At issue is an affidavit submitted to the court by Cassandra Colchagoff (an attorney). With the November 10, 2004 affidavit Mrs. Colchagoff attempted to change her testimony (December 2003 affidavit). That is, the district court specifically cited her December 2003 testimony as its reason for dismissing the constitutional claims in the matter No. 03-1400. Mrs. Colchagoff had testified (made a material false declaration) that there was "no link to Kaplan Higher Education Corporation (Kaplan College) and no link to federal funding." The district court ruled that "without a link to federal funding" I couldn't pursue my constitutional claims against Kaplan.

The only difference between the two Colchagoff affidavits is the November 10, 2004, testimony no longer suggested, "no link to Kaplan Higher Education Corporation (Kaplan College) and no link to federal funding." Likewise, her attorneys, Sara Shubert, Laurence Shtasel, and Blank Rome appears to have changed their representation to the court. Her attorneys now acknowledged my October 15, 2000, Kaplan College enrollment letter and admitted in footnote 2 "certain colleges operated by Kaplan Higher Education Corporation, such as Kaplan College, received federal funding."

Because this information (Document # 64 and #86) is "fatal" to the court's decision at No. 03-1400, it has been unlawfully removed and withheld from the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The unexplained disappearance of document #64 and #86 is further proof of criminal activity (obstruction of justice and intentional violation of my civil rights).

Please note, the November 10, 2004, Cassandra Colchagoff affidavit (Document #64 and #86) now missing from the court record, at paragraph 23, specifically admitted malfeasance.

In conclusion, the missing affidavit (Document #64 and #86) not submitted to the Third Circuit is decisive for all factual issues related to this matter and directly contradicts Judge David S. Cercone's Memorandum opinions (May 14, 2004 and June 29, 2005).

I demand an immediate investigation.

Respectfully,
(Name Removed)