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View Diary: SCOTUS: Roberts Helped Pro-Gay Rights Coalition in Key Case (167 comments)

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  •  PFAW email alert... (none)
    But this is only the tip of the iceberg. Here are some highlights from what the press uncovered over the last week. While working under Republican presidents, John Roberts:

    supported regulatory changes that would have permitted the federal funding of discrimination against women, minorities, people with disabilities, and older Americans (Washington Post, July 26 );

    argued that Congress should strip the Supreme Court of authority to rule on cases regarding abortion, school prayer, and certain school desegregation remedies (New York Times, July 28 );

    argued that affirmative action programs were bound to fail because they required "the recruiting of inadequately prepared candidates" (New York Times, July 28 );

    criticized the Supreme Court decision forbidding organized prayer in public schools;
    sought to expand the ability of prosecutors and police to question suspects out of the presence of their attorneys (Washington Post, July 26 );

    and argued that the Justice Department should not intervene on behalf of female prisoners who were discriminated against in a job-training program (New York Times, July 28 );

    ...and this information comes from documents the White House willingly made available!

    •  It was his job. (none)
      I know, this is a rightwing talking point.  But here's a story which I was thinking of writing a diary about:

      When I was a little kid, my dad was a law professor at a state university in a very very red state.  The guy with the office next door was about 80 years old, and was known as a staunch liberal.  He had been responsible for the establishment of the ACLU in the state, and had received multiple death threats for it.  He had as strong a liberal record as anybody could imagine.

      Turns out, he worked at a fairly high level in the Roosevelt and Truman administrations in the Solicitor General's office.  Turns out,  he wrote the brief supporting the internment of Japanese in the United States during WWII.  I promise you, this would have been anathema to this man (who died several years ago).  But it was his job, and he did it.

      This is what lawyers do.  Yes, there are issues that are strong enough to make them quit in protest.  But the Roosevelt administration did a lot of very honorable things, and perhaps he didn't want to turn his back on them.  So he wrote the brief.

      Let's hear what Roberts has to say under sworn testimony.  Let's ask him difficult questions- but we have to listen to the answers.  That's what will give us an idea of his "judicial temperament", not work he did 20 years ago fulfilling his responsibilities in other administrations.

    •  from NY Times op-ed (none)
      For those of us obsessed with voting rights, this was unpleasant reading.

      He drafted op-ed articles for his boss, Attorney General William French Smith, and he circulated talking points warning that Congress - by trying to make it easier to prove voting rights violations - was on the verge of creating "a quota system for electoral politics."

      . . .

      Representative John Lewis, the Georgia Democrat and civil rights leader who was severely beaten during the voting rights campaign of 1965, said he was troubled by Mr. Roberts's writings from the 1980's, as they have come to light in recent days. "I think the senators on both sides should really grill him on not just his commitment to the Voting Rights Act, but his understanding of what the fight was all about - the spirit of the act, not just the letter," Mr. Lewis said.

      OT: If you've never heard John Lewis speak, and you get the chance, go hear him!

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