Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who is defending President Bush’s anti-terrorism tactics in multiple court battles, said Friday that federal judges should not substitute their personal views for the president’s judgments in wartime.
Translation: “We know what we’re doing is unconstitutional and un-American, and the last thing we want is to have the courts giving it close scrutiny. Congress isn’t bothering to scrutinize what we’re doing, so why should the courts?”
After seeing this, I went searching for the articles about a conference on judicial independence held last Saturday by former SCOTUS justice Sandra Day O’Connor and found this editorial from the Macon Telegraph:
Any American can probably cite some Supreme Court decision – whether handed down by a conservative or liberal majority – that outraged his or her sense of morality, order or political fitness. Some would refer to Roe v. Wade, others to the decision in 2000 which in effect handed the presidency to George W. Bush. There is always something not to like.
But to hate the judge and pull down the independent system he or she represents? Ours, after all, as O’Connor says, has been and must continue to be “a nation of laws, not men – or even women.”
Far better to pray for the judges – and defend their independence. That’s the American way.
On an unrelated topic, I completely agree with Gonzo on this:
Gonzales also said he thought more states should move away from having judges stand in partisan elections to keep their seats. Gonzales himself as a Texas Supreme Court justice “had to raise enough money to run print ads and place television spots around the state in order to retain my seat.”
(FYI, my agreement with Gonzales on that issue is a personal opinion and not necessarily the view of the ACLU.)
Andy in the HBG