Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Specter of Alito

I was watching a snippet of the Supreme Court nomination hearings for Samuel Alito, and the section I was watching had Chairman Specter (R-Pennsylvania) grilling Justice Alito on abortion rights issues (For those who don't know, Specter is a "pro-choice" Republican). By no means was Specter's line of questioning harsh when compared to the Democrats (upholding the valiant position of the minority watchdog), but he wasn't sitting on his hands with regards to follow-up questions.

Senator Specter questioned Justice Alito on stare decisis (judicial principle of precedent), and asked if he agreed with the idea that overturning Roe v. Wade or Casey v. Planned Parenthood could undermine the legitimacy of the U.S. Supreme Court. Alito responded with the idea that the Court should be insulated from public opinion and focus on law, and that the Court would be undermined in ANY case in which it was swayed by public opinion.

Yet Democrats continue to pound away asking questions about abortion. Why? I have a couple of ideas, but would like to hear more.