Yesterday, Adam Bonin introduced us to Goodwin Liu, President Obama's nominee to the 9th Circuit. Liu's confirmation vote is today.
Liu was first nominated by the President for the 9th Circuit in 2010. He's a former Rhodes Scholar who clerked for Judge David Tatel on the DC Circuit and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg for the Supreme Court, and since 2003 has been a Professor (and now Associate Dean) at the University of California’s Berkeley School of Law.
I got to know Professor Liu through his writings. With Pam Karlan and Chris Schroeder he wrote Keeping Faith With The Constitution, a remarkable book (it's all there, online, free) on proper constitutional interpretation, explaining to the general public how to understand the Constitution as "a basic charter of government whose practical meaning arises from the continual adaptation of its enduring text and principles to the conditions and challenges facing each generation."
Some of those writings include an op-ed written six years ago in which Liu made the rather obvious point that conservative interest groups talk about "free enterprise," "private ownership of property," and "limited government" as "code words for an ideological agenda hostile to environmental, workplace, and consumer protections." That, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) says, means that the Asian-American Liu is basically a Communist, in the Chinese vein, of course.
GRASSLEY: Does [Liu] think we’re the communist-run China? That the government runs everything? That it’s a better place when they put online every week a coal-fired plant to pollute the air, put more carbon dioxide into the air then we do in the United States, and where children are dying because food is poisoned, and consumers aren’t protected, and where every miner in the China coal mines is in jeopardy of losing their lives? That’s how out of place this guy is when he talks about “free enterprise,” “private ownership of property,” and “limited government” being something somehow bad, but if you get government more involved, like they do in China, it’s somehow a better place.
The racist old bastard isn't even trying not to be a racist old bastard, or an embarrassment to the U.S. Senate.
The vote is scheduled for 2:00 pm today, ET.