Oh, duh. Like, major duh.
The "Dred Scott" reference by Bush sent everyone at Atrios and other blog sites scrambling to historical tomes to figure out what on Earth Mr. Bush could mean, short of saying that he wouldn't appoint pro-slavery judges.
Really, we should have just done a damn google search on the Internets.
Because it's all there, plain as day. The Dred Scott reference is code language for abortion rights. Here's how one anti-choice site describes it:
Not if one listens to what is being said on the retirement of Justice Harry Blackmun, author of Roe vs. Wade, the Dred Scott decision of our time. Roe made it clear that the unborn child -- fetus, if that term is more comfortable -- has no rights that the state is bound to respect.
And like Dred Scott, Roe was handed down in the name of an individual right. Roger Taney's decision in Dred Scott was based on the Fifth Amendment's guarantee that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law. Justice Blackmun based Roe on a vague right of privacy nowhere spelled out in the Constitution but ""broad enough to encompass a woman's decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy. ''
The reasoning in Dred Scott and Roe v. Wade is nearly identical. In both cases the Court stripped all rights from a class of human beings and reduced them to nothing more than the property of others. Compare the arguments the Court used to justify slavery and abortion. Clearly, in the Court's eyes, unborn children are now the same "beings of an inferior order" that the justices considered Blacks to be over a century ago.
Dred Scott and Roe v. Wade are an ominous parallel. In the Dred Scott Supreme Court, 7 to 2 decision, it was determined that blacks were not persons, they were the property of their owner, who could choose to sell or kill, that abolitionists should not impose morality on the slaveowner, slavery is legal. In the Roe v Wade, 7 to 2 decision, it was determined that the unborn are not persons, they are the property of their owners (the mother), their owner could choose to keep or kill, that the anti-abortionist should not impose their morality on the mother, abortion is legal.
When Bush made reference to "Dred Scott" he was assuring his anti-choice constituents that he would indeed only appoint Supreme Court justices who would remove abortion rights.
It's unmistakable, once you know the code words. There's no other reason he said it, that damned fundamentalist fascist.