Roberts v. Florida Voters
I agree with Max Sawicky and others that Roberts isn't a defeatable nominee for the Supreme Court. Rolling out a laundry list of somewhat conservative positions he took in various cases isn't going to amount to a killer bill of particulars that will convince the public that he's unfit for the bench.
However, I also agree with Max that Roberts' dubious role in the 2000 Florida election scandal bears "ventilation," as reported in today's LA Times:
As the 2000 presidential recount battle raged in Florida, a Washington lawyer named John G. Roberts Jr. traveled to Tallahassee, the state capital, to dispense legal advice.
He operated in the shadows at least some of those 37 days, never signing a legal brief and rarely making an appearance at the makeshift headquarters for George W. Bush's legal team...
Republican lawyers who worked on the recount said Wednesday that Roberts advised Gov. Jeb Bush on the role that the governor and the Florida Legislature might play in the recount battle. At the time, when GOP officials feared that Democrat Al Gore might win a recount battle in court, Republican state lawmakers were devising a plan to use their constitutional power to assign the state's electoral votes to George W. Bush -- a proposal criticized by Democrats.
So his studied legal opinion was that the state of Florida should bypass the will of voters and have the GOP-dominated legislature decide who won the presidency? That's a bit ... disturbing.
Chris Kromm is executive director of the Institute for Southern Studies and publisher of the Institute's online magazine, Facing South.