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An ominous Specter: Part III (MUST Read!)
Club For Growth (Townhall.com) ^ | FR Post 11-11-04 | Thomas Sowell

Posted on 11/11/2004 11:04:34 AM PST by vannrox

Thomas Sowell: An ominous Specter: Part III

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An ominous Specter: Part III

November 11, 2004

As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Arlen Specter has often justified his voting for or against judicial nominees on grounds that he supports those nominees whose views are in the "mainstream," as distinguished from those whose views are "extremist."

 Now that he is in line to become chairman of that committee in January, because of seniority, the meaning of these two elusive -- and elastic -- terms becomes crucial.

 Senator Specter voted against the confirmation of Judge Robert Bork and for the confirmation of Judge Antonin Scalia to the Supreme Court, even though their voting records on the Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia were virtually identical. On a couple of decisions where they differed, Judge Scalia took a more conservative position than Judge Bork did.

 Why then was Judge Bork considered to be so conservative as to be "out of the mainstream" while Judge Scalia was not? It had nothing to do with their records.

 It had to do with the fact that Antonin Scalia's nomination, which preceded Bork's, created no political firestorm because Scalia was replacing another conservative Justice and so would not have changed the lineup on the Supreme Court.

 Robert Bork, on the other hand, would have been replacing a more liberal Justice and therefore would have shifted the balance of power on the High Court. Liberal and left-wing organizations across the country mobilized to prevent that from happening at all costs and launched a massive smear campaign that created a new verb, "to Bork" a nominee.

 Those Senators who buckled under these pressures -- including Senator Arlen Specter -- could justify voting against Judge Bork on grounds that he was an "extremist." The term is very elastic and politically convenient.

 If "mainstream" becomes the litmus test for judicial nominees, then that means continuing the trends of the past half-century toward judges who take policy decisions out of the hands of the voters and their elected representatives, and impose their own notions as the law of the land.

 "Mainstream" is not even a fixed position. The more judges get away with overstepping the boundaries between the courts' jurisdictions and the areas reserved by the Constitution for democratically elected officials, the further into those reserved areas judges go.

 Within living memory, it would once have been considered unthinkable for a judge to order a state legislature to raise taxes to finance the judge's pet project. But that has now happened.

 Issues like gay marriage or abortion may stir up controversy in the media but most of that controversy is about which policy is desirable. The more fundamental question is: Who is to decide?

 Those who say that voters, not judges, should decide are not in the "mainstream." They are considered to be "extremists."

 The easy way out for any President is to nominate people who can be easily confirmed by the Senate. Even conservative Republican Presidents have put liberal zealots on the Supreme Court or have nominated people who carried the "moderate" or "conservative" label, but who lacked the intellectual depth or the backbone to resist fashionable trends toward judicial activism.

 To President Bush's credit, he has tried to stop the steady drift toward arbitrary judicial rule by nominating people like California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown who have a track record of opposing judicial activism.

 A President who is trying to make a fundamental change in the federal judiciary and a chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee who wants to continue the "mainstream" trends are in a fundamental contradiction, no matter how much each side tries to paper over the difference with nice words.

 With so many federal court vacancies, and with several Supreme Court vacancies almost certain to occur during the next four years, this may be the last chance in our lifetime to reverse the trend toward government by unelected judges.

 That is infinitely more important than putting Senator Arlen Specter in charge of the Senate Judiciary Committee because of his seniority.

©2004 Creators Syndicate, Inc.

Contact Thomas Sowell | Read Sowell's biography

townhall.com



TOPICS: Activism/Chapters; Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Politics/Elections; US: Pennsylvania
KEYWORDS: 2004; arlennotarlindummy; arlin; bush; chair; conservative; election; freedom; judges; kerry; liberal; liberty; specter; sphincter; thomassowell; vote

1 posted on 11/11/2004 11:04:39 AM PST by vannrox
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To: vannrox

"...this may be the last chance in our lifetime to reverse the trend toward government by unelected judges..."


2 posted on 11/11/2004 11:05:45 AM PST by vannrox (The Preamble to the Bill of Rights - without it, our Bill of Rights is meaningless!)
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To: vannrox

Amen!


3 posted on 11/11/2004 11:15:36 AM PST by BellStar (Oyez, oyez! All rise for the Honorable Chief Justice Clarence Thomas)
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To: vannrox
I have been informed that Bush wants Spector in charge. I fear we are going to get a supreme court full of lightweights .
4 posted on 11/11/2004 11:38:43 AM PST by monday
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To: monday

Do you have reason to know what Bush wants?


5 posted on 11/11/2004 11:40:02 AM PST by Defiant (Democrats: Don't go away mad, just go away.)
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To: Defiant
Not really. I asked the same question elsewhere and sarasota said; "Because he(Bush) worked to get him(Spector) re-elected in PA and because Brit Hume (and his All Stars) said as much last week when the story broke.".
6 posted on 11/11/2004 11:49:11 AM PST by monday
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To: vannrox
Bork Spenctor
or Support a 3rd party in 2006 midterms

Note to GOP deliver or perish
7 posted on 11/11/2004 12:04:55 PM PST by Mark in the Old South
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To: Mark in the Old South

Poppa Bush: "I have to hand it to David Souter. We didn't ask, and he didn't tell."


8 posted on 11/11/2004 12:16:04 PM PST by MoralSense
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To: MoralSense

Sometimes to get answers to hard questions you have to be "rough trade" in a DC park.


9 posted on 11/11/2004 12:19:40 PM PST by Mark in the Old South
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To: vannrox
"...this may be the last chance in our lifetime to reverse the trend toward government by unelected judges..."

Yup. That's why the battle over Arlen is winner-take-all.

10 posted on 11/11/2004 12:21:40 PM PST by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: Aquinasfan

Hugh Hewitt still holds to his position that Specter is there to stay, that he will chair, and that Bush will back him.


11 posted on 11/11/2004 12:32:03 PM PST by blues-train (blues train)
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To: Defiant

BUSH IS NOT BACKING SPECTER.

IF HE WAS, THEN YOU CAN BE ASSURED, THAT BUSH WOULD BE VOCAL ABOUT IT.

IN THE PAST ELECTION OF 2002, BUSH SUPPORTED SPECTER SO THAT HE WOULD GET A BETTER CHANCE OF BEING REELLECTED IN PENNSYLVANIA.THIS WAS A DECISION MADE NOT BY BUSH, BUT RATHER BY CARL ROVE AND OTHER POLITICAL STRATEGISTS. THIS IS THE POST 2004 ELECTION PERIOD. THE ISSUES ARE TOO LARGE, AND THE RISKS TOO GREAT...TO LEAVE THE DECISIONS TO BE MADE BY POLITICAL HANDLERS.



PRESIDENT BUSES SILENCE ON THIS MATTER...
SPEAKS VOLUMES CONCERNING HIS THOUGHTS.


12 posted on 11/11/2004 1:38:09 PM PST by vannrox (The Preamble to the Bill of Rights - without it, our Bill of Rights is meaningless!)
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To: Mark in the Old South

Agreed. I already voted CP in Texas this time.

Next time..I won't be the only one. The Rep party can NOT be stupid enough to continue PC RINO policies like unlimited immigration, RINOs in charge of the Senate, and being weak on pro-life. They will not survive next election if the alienate their pro-life base. even if Hitlery is the Rat nominee, the RepublicRats in the party have to be held accountable if we are to EVER stop this crap..and that means withholding your vote no matter what the consequences and they need to be made aware of that.


13 posted on 11/11/2004 1:45:44 PM PST by Indie (Ignorance of the truth is no excuse for stupidity.)
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To: monday

"I have been informed that Bush wants "

By whom?
Does Gos speak to you too?


14 posted on 11/11/2004 1:47:32 PM PST by konaice
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To: Indie
Do not stay home in 2008. This is very important. The history of third parties is they either take the place on one of the major parties or the platform is absorbed. The GOP has been pretending to be pro-life so they will either fold like a house of cards or they will get real serious.

Do not stay home. Vote 3rd party even if you like your Rep. The best bet is in races that are expected to be unopposed. A few "upsets" and you will see a few Pols with pouty lips begging for forgiveness and Big Media screaming how this is a threat to democracy.
15 posted on 11/11/2004 2:03:06 PM PST by Mark in the Old South
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To: vannrox

"Bork" Specter!


16 posted on 11/11/2004 2:18:20 PM PST by taxcutisapayraise
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To: GeneralHavoc
GRASSROOTSPA CALL TO ACTION

STOP SPECTER FROM BLOCKING BUSH'S JUDGES

Contact Senator Frist 202-224-3135

Contact Senator Santorum 202-224-6324

Tell them in no uncertain terms that Specter cannot be made Senate Judiciary Chairman

Do NOT take "no" for an answer!

Bush has no Mandate?

Just say "NO" To Specter's Games!

Senate Judiciary Committee GOP Members

Contact Senator Orrin Hatch 202-224-5251

Contact Senator Charles Grassley 202-224-3744

Contact Senator Jon Kyl 202-224-4521

Contact Senator Mike DeWine 202-224-2315

Contact Senator Jeff Sessions 202-224-4124

Contact Senator Lindsey Graham -202-224-5972

Contact Senator Larry Craig 202-224-2752

Contact Senator Saxby Chambliss 202-224-3521

Contact Senator John Cornyn 202-224-2934

17 posted on 11/11/2004 2:26:28 PM PST by smokeyb
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To: vannrox

"Mainstream" is not even a fixed position. The more judges get away with overstepping the boundaries between the courts' jurisdictions and the areas reserved by the Constitution for democratically elected officials, the further into those reserved areas judges will go"....

Chills go down my back at that.
Thomas Sowell has my sincere respect. He posesses a clear overview of the Senate Judiciary Committee and Arlen Specter's relationship to it.

IMHO Larry Craig would fight for a conservative nominee.
Specter would continue to litmus label.


18 posted on 11/11/2004 3:23:28 PM PST by Paperdoll (on the cutting edge - OUR FIGHT HAS JUST BEGUN)
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To: Paperdoll

Freeper alert. A broad based coalition of pro-life and pro-family organizations will have a demonstration in front of the office of Majority Leader Senator Frist on Tuesday, November 16th, at 1 p.m. to call for Senator Specter not to be elected chairperson. The location is the Dirksen Senate office building on the corner of 1st and Constitution NE.

Whilst we enjoy our families on a patriotic holiday weekend, you can count on the socialist scum working overtime in the hellish holes of Congress to resurrect Specter's chances.


19 posted on 11/11/2004 4:12:38 PM PST by Liberty Wins (Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of all who threaten it.)
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To: Mark in the Old South

But the GOP knows that its natural supporters will stand with it in 2008 against Hillary no matter what -- therefore the GOP won't be that conservative on issues.


20 posted on 11/11/2004 5:06:34 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: Theodore R.

I would not be surprised to see the GOP deliberately decide to jettison the pro-Life vote once and for all. It would be insane, but I can see the writing just starting to be scratched on the wall.


21 posted on 11/11/2004 5:38:52 PM PST by Siobhan (Pray without ceasing.)
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To: vannrox
If BUSH were backing Specter, "... BUSH WOULD BE VOCAL ABOUT IT". Wrong! Bush is silent on deposing Specter, Bush was criticized by Ann Coulter for not being more vocal during the campaign, which she (and I) believe would have been a landslide of greater magnitude, and Bush was "like a deer in the headlights" during the first and other portions of the Presidential Debates. He is too quiet on a lot of things. He needs to take a stand, we are and we will! 2006 is around the corner, we can be REAL selective on whom we vote for, or not vote for.

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22 posted on 11/11/2004 5:48:03 PM PST by Henchman (BORK SPECTER. Email your friends and relatives. PLEASE do it now!)
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To: vannrox
Title: GOP Sen. Specter Vows to Block Bush's Nominees
Source: newsmax
URL Source:
http://www.newsmax.com/archives/ic/2004/10/29/165559.shtml
Published: Oct 29, 2004
Author: newsmax
Post Date: 2004-10-29 20:42:24 by TLBSHOW
3 Comments

Recall that alleged Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, upon winning the primary, immediately backstabbed President Bush, who had campaigned for him instead of actual Republican Pat Toomey. Turns out Specter was just getting started.

We now see that the usually pro-Democrat Pittsburgh Post-Gazette endorsed the sharp-horned RINO in Tuesday's general election for this reason: "Before the Post-Gazette editorial board, he promised that no extremists would be approved for the bench."

What the pro-abortion Specter and pro-abortion Post-Gazette mean by "extremist" is anyone who isn't pro-abortion or who otherwise follows the U.S. Constitution instead of making up legislation from the bench.

"Even if he votes nine out of 10 times for the administration, we trust his word that the 10 percent of difference will be a brake on the worst excesses of a second Bush term, if it comes to that," the pee-yoo P-G snarled.

And there are these facts:

Arlen Specter:

Voted NO on ending special funding for minority & women-owned business. (Oct 1997)

Voted NO on banning affirmative action hiring with federal funds. (Jul 1995)

Success is near because of all the hard work we have done, but it is not yet over. The Philadelphia Inquirer, Washington Times, and United Press International all covered how the offices have been flooded with calls, but we need to keep it up as the fight does not end here! Make the calls all over again on Monday.

Also note the changes to the site, all the recent press mentions will be on the Why? page, but this blog should keep you fairly up to date on the goings ons.

Mark Harris .:. 11/6/2004 Keep Up The Work

Things are going fantastic over here, as we have gotten press through the Laura Ingram Show, several state pro-life alerts, and countless conservative e-mail lists, but the fight has just begun.

The rumor on the Hill is that things are about ready to break. We just need to keep up pressure on them to make sure it happens. So keep your eyes and ears open. NotSpecter.com also has some great resources that have gone up so make sure to check it out.

Also GrassrootsPA.com has a letter written by Specter to raise money that slams the conservative wing of the party, which puts to rest any argument over how he would run the Judiciary Committee.

http://stopspecter.savethegop.com/

Lest you think this is fiction - these signs started to appear in the Philadelphia area just before the election, paid for by Arlen’s former campaign manager. This particular picture originially appeared in the Philly Daily News.

23 posted on 11/11/2004 5:49:00 PM PST by narses (The fight to protect the unborn is THE civil rights battle of the 21st century. + Vivo Christo Rey!)
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To: Siobhan

What you suggest may happen has already happened -- 1976, Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr., rejected prolife support. Many anti-abortion activists actually thought that GA Jimmy favored restrictions on abortion. He didn't: he misled those people.


24 posted on 11/11/2004 6:02:16 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: Henchman

Ann Coulter was right about that.


25 posted on 11/11/2004 6:05:19 PM PST by Siobhan (Pray without ceasing.)
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To: vannrox

Bush is not the man for the job.


26 posted on 11/11/2004 6:15:12 PM PST by cynicom (<p)
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To: Mark in the Old South
Bork Spenctor or Support a 3rd party in 2006 midterms Note to GOP deliver or perish

I strongly agree. I'm tired of weak-kneed puppies being put in-charge. Specter has to be blocked. Any Senator puppie that doesn't like it should resign. It would only be to sweet for the RINOs to join Jeffers. I want the Republicans to stand FOR something and that something better be distinct from the RATS. Lower taxes, less government regulation of business, and strict constructionist judges. Is that a short enough list? Is that too hard to remember? I'm sickened by the thought that Bush has blessed Specter for the chairmanship.
27 posted on 11/11/2004 8:13:49 PM PST by sefarkas (why vote Democrate-lite???)
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To: vannrox

"That is infinitely more important than putting Senator Arlen Specter in charge of the Senate Judiciary Committee because of his seniority."

The very thought that I put in my messages to my two senators and to Frist. Unfortunately, no one in Frist's office read my letter, except to put it in a stack of other "anti-Specter" letters. All I got was a form letter. And I haven't heard a peep out of either of my senators.

Seniority and Senate tradition just must not carry the day on this matter. I can picture the Republican Senate leaders huddled together, wringing their hands, wondering how they can resolve this conundrum. Senate tradition on the one hand, principles on the other. I'm guessing tradition wins. Tradition, and fraternity, are almost always more important to Senators than principle.


28 posted on 11/11/2004 8:29:03 PM PST by Rocky
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To: vannrox
Email needs to be sent ASAP to ALL NON-FREEPERS. PLEASE get your friends and family involved. Let them be part of history! We are winning. No conservative Republican Committee Member will openly back Specter. SAMPLE EMAIL

Dear Senator: Thank you for serving. I am sure you have many more requests with which to deal. In summary, Bork Specter, NOW!

Please do not permit Sen. Specter to Chair the Judicial Comm. His view, the US Constitution is a living changing document, is in total conflict with our system of government. The Constitution must be strictly construed.

The basis of our laws, the Constitution, may not be changed by Judges, but by an Amendment, as stated in the Constitution. Specter's refusal to appoint BORK a Federal Judge speaks right to the point.

Thank you. I know you will do the right thing.

EMAIL ADDRESSES -

President@whitehouse.gov

SENATE MAJORITY LEADER
FRIST, Bill - (R - TN) Class I 461 DIRKSEN SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510 (202) 224-3344 Web Form:
www.frist.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=AboutSenatorFrist.ContactForm

JUDICIAL COMMITTEE:
Sen. Orrin HATCH, UT, current Committee Chair PH: 202-224-5251 FX: 202-224-6331 104 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510 Web Form:
www.hatch.senate.gov/index.cfm?Fuseaction=Offices.Contact

Sen. Jon Kyl, AZ PH: 202-224-4521 FX: 202-224-2207
www.kyl.senate.gov/contact.cfm

Sen. John Cornyn, TX PH: 202-224-2934 FX: 202-228-2856
www.cornyn.senate.gov/contact/index.html

Sen. Charles Grassley, IA PH: 202-224-3744 FX: 319-363-7179
www.grassley.senate.gov/webform.htm

Sen. Mike DeWine, OH PH: 202-224-2315 FX: 202-224-6519
www.dewine.senate.gov

Sen. Jeff Sessions, AL PH: 202-224-4124 FX: 202-224-3149
www.sessions.senate.gov/contact.htm#form

Sen. Lindsey Graham, SC PH: 202-224-5972 FX: 202-224-3808
www.grassley.senate.gov/webform.htm

Sen. Larry Craig, ID PH: 202-224-2752 FX: 202-228-1067
www.craig.senate.gov/webform.html

Sen. Saxby Chambliss, GA PH: 202-224-3521 FX: 202-224-0103
www.chambliss.senate.gov/Contact/default.cfm?pagemode=1

The "Newbie" Senators
Well, there will be votes in January, 2005. Should you need tocontact the newly elected Senators, here is how to get ahold of them. PLEASE FEEL FREE TO ADD OR CORRECT.

FL -- Mel Martinez, 305-443-3611 fax: 407-897-8595

GA -- Johnny Isakson, 202-225-4501, 404-252-5239
email: ga06@mail.house.gov

LA -- David Vitter, 504-833-1163; fax: 202-225-0739

NC -- Richard Burr, 336-777-1170;
email: richard.burrnc05@mail.house.gov

OK -- Tom Coburn, 918-684-4308, 405-721-4281, 580-353-2858; fax: 918-294-8380 or 580-353-1978 * There may be a problem with some of the numbers as they are from 2 sources. Better than -0- numbers

SC -- Jim DeMint, 866-546-2004; fax: 202-226-1177

SD -- John Thune, 605-221-1010, 605-718-7000;
email: info@johnthune.com

Or email the Pro Abortion Devil Himself:
Subject:"Payback for BORK".
arlen_specter@specter.senate.gov

Specter does not want to hear the will of the people. His mind is closed and so are his ears. Lookup your Senator at www.senate.gov. If he / she is a Republican, let them know you participated in the BUSH Revolution for Regime Change from Leftist, Democratic obstructed Congresses.

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29 posted on 11/12/2004 8:43:25 AM PST by Henchman (BORK SPECTER. Email your friends and relatives. PLEASE do it now!)
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To: Henchman

Specter does not want to hear the will of the people. His mind is closed and so are his ears.

Arlen Specter believes in his own infallibility. He is convinced that the majority want to continue the holocaust of abortion, and he will be there forever to light the fire.


30 posted on 11/12/2004 7:53:35 PM PST by Theodore R.
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To: vannrox
"That is infinitely more important than putting Senator Arlen Specter in charge of the Senate Judiciary Committee because of his seniority."

Absolutely. I couldn't agree more strongly. Excellent article, as usual from Mr. Sowell!

31 posted on 11/14/2004 6:40:54 AM PST by TAdams8591 (BORK SPECTER!!!)
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