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Some (temporary) parting Alito notes

While it drives traffic to the site, I am going to move on from the Alito nomination to more mundane things of daily life. Just a few notes on the way out that door:

First, I find it interesting the Sen. Tim Johnson was the second Senator with whom Alito met. Could it be there’s a belief he could cast a vote for Alito? Frankly, I was most impressed by what Tim told the local daily (in a story that, at least as of the time of this post, the daily didn’t view as significant enough to put on its web site). Basically, he said we shouldn’t be surprised that Alito is fundamentally conservative and the real question is “whether his views are within the broad mainstream of contemporary thinking.” Johnson is right. Anybody who thought a Bush nominee wouldn’t be a true conservative is even more naive than me. The real issue is whether Alito’s theory of law and constitutional interpretation is that of someone in the middle of conservative thought or an extreme wing nut.

Second, I’ve mentioned Cass Sunstein’s approach. Dispatches from the Culture Wars notes a Sunstein column that appears to take a fairly generous view of Alito. (Sunstein evidently was on NPR’s “Fresh Air” Tuesday but I have not had the chance to listen). This same post, like others elsewhere, also takes note of an interview with a former Alito law clerk who is a liberal.

As I noted yesterday, there’s other and better sources out there to keep up on the odds and ends and tidbits. I may weigh in again later but with the hearings still ahead, it remains too early to say yea or nay on this one. Suffice it to say that I concur with Tim Johnson‘s comment yesterday that serves as this post’s closing quote.


Grenades from both the liberal and arch-conservative sides don’t help all that much.

U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson

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