Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Judge Janice Rogers Brown for Supreme Court

There's a good article in today's Wall Street Journal' Opinion Journal on the current battle to fill the seat vacated by Sandra Day O'Connor on the Supreme Court. It ends up making the conclusion that I've reached: Janice Rogers Brown should get the nod.

She's a conservative with a long record on California's Supreme Court and had been one of several judges being filibustered by Senate Democrats. But after being confirmed last month, she now sits on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, a court that has produced more than its share of Supreme Court justices. Thanks to the deal seven Democrats hammered out with seven Republicans she is, by definition, not "extreme" enough that her nomination would constitute "extraordinary circumstances" justifying a filibuster.

Anyway, filibustering Judge Brown would also block the first black woman from taking a seat on the high court. Never underestimate the power of "a first" in getting Supreme Court nominee through the Senate. Justice O'Connor, the first woman to sit on the high court, sailed through 99-0 in 1981. Five years later, President Reagan sent up Antonin Scalia to be the first Italian-American to sit on the highest court in the land. He is now the bane of the left, but in 1986, he won confirmation 98-0.

Unlike Alberto Gonzales, Ms. Brown wouldn't give heartburn to conservatives. Plus, she just received Senate confirmation for the Court of Appeals, which means it would be tough to fillibuster her as too extreme...and what price would the Dems pay for blocking the first black woman from sitting on the Supreme Court? I would think she has nearly all of the ingredients Mr. Bush would want...except for the fact that she's not Hispanic.


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