Skip to comments.Alito Argued to Overturn Roe in 1985 Memo
Posted on 12/23/2005 8:50:41 AM PST by NormsRevenge
WASHINGTON - Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito wrote in a June 1985 memo that the ruling that legalized abortion should be overturned, a position certain to spur tough questioning at January's confirmation hearings.
In a recommendation to the solicitor general on filing a friend-of-court brief, Alito said the government "should make clear that we disagree with Roe v. Wade and would welcome the opportunity to brief the issue of whether, and if so to what extent, that decision should be overruled."
The June 3, 1985 document was one of 45 released by the National Archives on Friday. A total of 744 pages were made public.
The memo contained the same Alito statements as one dated May 30, 1985, which the National Archives released in November but with a forward note from Reagan administration Solicitor General Charles Fried acknowledging the volatility of the issue and saying that it had to be kept quiet.
Abortion has become a wedge issue in connection with Alito's confirmation to take the Supreme Court seat held by Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who is retiring. The federal appellate court judge has been seeking to assure senators that he would put his private views aside when it came time to rule on the issue as a justice. O'Connor has been a supporter of the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling affirming a woman's constitutional right to an abortion.
The documents released Friday are the latest involving Alito and abortion.
In paperwork released earlier from Alito's time in the Justice Department's solicitor general's office, he recommended a legal strategy of dismantling abortion rights piece by piece. And as part of an application for a job as deputy assistant attorney general, Alito said the Constitution does not guarantee abortion rights.
The latest memo is certain to stir controversy as the Senate prepares for confirmation hearings for Alito, slated to begin Jan. 9.
Fried took note of the implications of the emerging policy in his introduction to the June 1985 memo. "I need hardly say how sensitive this material is, and ask that it have no wider circulation," he said.
In the memo, Alito focused on a woman making an informed choice and states rights.
"While abortion involves essentially the same medical choice as other surgery, it involves in addition a moral choice, because the woman contemplating a first trimester abortion is given absolute and unreviewable authority over the future of the fetus," Alito wrote. "Should not then the woman be given relevant and objective information bearing on this choice? Roe took from the state lawmakers the authority to make this choice and gave it to the pregnant woman. Does it not follow that the woman contemplating abortion have at her disposal at least some of the same sort of information that we would want lawmakers to consider?"
Consistent with his previous writings, Alito said these arguments would be preferable to a "frontal assault on Roe v. Wade."
"It has most of the advantage of a brief devoted to the overruling of Roe v. Wade; it makes our position clear, does not even tacitly concede Roe's legitimacy, and signals that we regard the question as live and open," Alito wrote.
In his memo, Alito said the government, in its argument, might be able to nudge the court and "to provide greater recognition of the states' interest in protecting the unborn throughout pregnancy, or to dispel in part the mystical faith in the attending physician that supports Roe and the subsequent cases."
hhmmm,, what will the talking heads squawk about sunday?
Iraq, the NSA,, or.. roe v wade?
Good for him!
first story on cnn.com is housing market plunge. Then the next top story is this about Alito...
WaPo had this last month
Memo: Alito Urged Government to Challenge Roe v. Wade ^
Additional info (updated today as well):
DA DA DAAA!
This story has been out since about three days after he was nominated.
So what? A whole bunch of LIBERAL ACTIVIST JUSTICES voted to overturn the Constitution regarding EMINENT DOMAIN...so who REALLY are the bad guys? I say the socialist Constitution-busters are. Not Alito.
[Ed Whelan 12/23 10:02 AM]
The AP reports today, and Drudge headlines, the news that in June 1985 Sam Alito, as an assistant to the Solicitor General, wrote a memo in the Thornburgh case on how the Department of Justice should advance the Reagan administrations goal of overturning Roe v. Wade. The memo that AP breathlessly reports is the exact same memo that was made public 23 days ago and that has already been the subject of extensive commentary.
Wake up, AP!
This is old news. Please catch up.
The housing market thing is top story at MSNBC as well. Somehow, I don't recall them posting record home ownership equally as prominent. Why do they even bother to deny their bias?
Please catch up.
I hear ya. lol
Aw heck, let the MSM have their Merry Little Christmas parade with this "news" , it may well be the last hurrah for some of them.
In other words, what we know about ALITO we already knew in November. Another MSM giving us the news several times, in the hopes they can fool us once.
The only new information is that this is the forwarding of the memo, and includes information from the Solicitor General. Which, BTW, says NOTHING about Alito, just about the ISSUE.
Yes, that's another story. The "plunge" was from October to November. OF course, new housing always "plunges" between october and november. They didn't report the "year-to-year" sales numbers. They DID report that the year-to-year price went up by only 0.3 percent. That is actually important, because it means that prices for new houses in november of THIS year are the same as the prices LAST year.
But without more information, we don't know if that just means that builders this year had to switch to building smaller houses, which would sell for less, becauase of rising interest rates, or if this indicates that the price of a similar house hasn't increased in the past year.
This is why I hate the media, because they are always looking to tell us how bad or good we should FEEL about something, and never bother to give us the information we need to figure it out for ourselves, even though that is the ONE job we really NEED them to do.
I wasn't being critical of you for posting this, by the way. We definitely need to know when they are recycling stories!
No problemo , Thanks!