Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Will the Promise Be Fulfilled?

I tape one show every week: Fox News Sunday. The All Stars make the McLachlan Group look like hack amateurs. I only wish I could see what happens between Brit Hume and Juan Williams on the commercial breaks. Anyway, last night I watched my tape from Sunday and was gripped by the closing comments from Charles Krauthammer and Bill Kristol.

The President had pledged himself to appoint a justice in the model of a Scalia and an O'Connor , and unless he does that I think he betrays his base and he betrays his promises. [After the commercial break Krauthammer clarified that he meant Clarence Thomas, not O'Connor.]
I think if the President nominates Gonzales it will be disastrous for the Republican Party and the conservative movement because an absolute core view of conservatives who have been fighting for thirty years is to begin to change the direction of the Court. Reagan tried with Bork. He was defeated. It was a great setback for conservatism. Conservatism has done very well on economic policy, pretty well on foreign policy, very badly in terms of affecting jurisprudence in terms of relinking constitutional law to the Constitution. A statement by President Bush that he wants to leave the balance on the Court as it is—of course Gonzales will sail through the Senate, not many Senators are going to vote against him—I think it will demoralize the conservative supporters of the President and will have bad effects for the Bush administration for the rest of its time. It will be the equivalent of the budget deal of 1992 . . . [If Gonzales is like O'Connor, this is] a statement that the Bush administration does not want to fundamentally change the character of American constitutional law, and that would be incredibly demoralizing to people like me.
And people like me.

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