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[SCOTUS] Mark 2 - RELEASE THE KAGAN (confirmed 63-37)

galenbladegalenblade Registered User regular
edited August 2010 in Debate and/or Discourse
So it begins again.
Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, the court's oldest member and leader of its liberal bloc, he is retiring. President Barack Obama now has his second high court opening to fill.

Stevens said Friday he will step down when the court finishes its work for the summer in late June or early July. He said he hopes his successor is confirmed "well in advance of the commencement of the court's next term."

His announcement had been hinted at for months. It comes 11 days before his 90th birthday.

Stevens began signaling a possible retirement last summer when he hired just one of his usual complement of four law clerks for the next court term. He acknowledged in several interviews that he was contemplating stepping down and would certainly do so during Obama's presidency.

Chief Justice John Roberts said in a written statement that Stevens has earned the gratitude and admiration of the American people.

"He has enriched the lives of everyone at the Court through his intellect, independence, and warm grace," Roberts said.

The timing of his announcement leaves ample time for the White House to settle on a successor and Senate Democrats, who control 59 votes, to conduct confirmation hearings and a vote. Republicans have not ruled out an attempt to delay confirmation.

The leading candidates to replace Stevens are Solicitor General Elena Kagan, 49, and federal appellate Judges Merrick Garland, 57, and Diane Wood, 59.

So, Stevens does what he's been hinting at for ages. We're going to get another nomination relatively soon. Those three seem like the likeliest. For my money, it's going to be Kagan, as I believe she was the runner up to Sotomayor last year.

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Posts

  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I hope he appoints a liberal this court is swinging far too much to the right lately

    nexuscrawler on
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Glad two (or three?) of those top choices appear to be female.

    Qingu on
  • Captain CarrotCaptain Carrot Alexandria, VARegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Obama will select someone quite liberal, but arguably to the right of Stevens. Liberals will grumble, but not be too terribly unhappy. Conservatives will claim that this makes the court much more liberal, and Stevens will magically have been a moderate.

    Captain Carrot on
  • ronzoronzo Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm really going to miss Stevens. Even if i disagreed with one of his decisions, I could usually respect it because I was based solidly in logical, reasonable legal arguments. Not the crazy bullshit Scalia and the like spout.

    ronzo on
  • KageraKagera Imitating the worst people. Since 2004Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Obama will select someone quite liberal, but arguably to the right of Stevens. Liberals will grumble, but not be too terribly unhappy. Conservatives will claim that this makes the court much more liberal, and Stevens will magically have been a moderate.

    And that's pretty much it for this topic.

    Kagera on
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  • HenroidHenroid Mexican kicked from Immigration Thread Centrism is Racism :3Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    This is an opportunity to put in a liberal that'll stop the court from swinging to the right so much. (pfft)

    ... no really I hope that happens somehow. I mean what the hell has been with this SCOTUS.

    Henroid on
  • GoslingGosling Looking Up Soccer In Mongolia Right Now, Probably Watertown, WIRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Yeah, expect it to be Kagan. This Congress already voted her in as Solicitor General, votes are on record, so if there's suddenly a giant fight over her now...

    Gosling on
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  • galenbladegalenblade Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    There was this Times article not too long ago that theorized Obama might be more ballsy this time around. Sotomayor was relatively safe, as are Kagan, Wood, and Garland.

    But could he go for someone a bit further left? Article mentions Harold Koh, Cass Sunstein and Pamela Karlan as dark horses. (and Dick Durbin and Claire McCaskill too, so grain of salt.)

    galenblade on
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  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    It's my understanding that using terms like "more liberal' may be misleading when talking about SCOTUS judges. Wasn't he in favor of the death penalty? It seems like the political leanings of justices tend to be rather multifaceted, so as not to be cleanly mapped onto a left-right spectrum.

    Obviously you can generalize about the 5 cons/4 libs on the court, but it may be difficult to actually tell if Stevens' replacement is more or less liberal than him ... on what grounds?

    Qingu on
  • KalTorakKalTorak One way or another, they all end up in the Undercity.Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.

    KalTorak on
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.
    That man's office was an absolute fucking mess.

    Qingu on
  • JihadJesusJihadJesus Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Qingu wrote: »
    It's my understanding that using terms like "more liberal' or "more conservatice" may be misleading when talking about SCOTUS judges other than Scalia.

    JihadJesus on
  • HenroidHenroid Mexican kicked from Immigration Thread Centrism is Racism :3Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.

    That's a great position!

    Henroid on
  • KalTorakKalTorak One way or another, they all end up in the Undercity.Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Henroid wrote: »
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.

    That's a great position!

    Susstein (and by extension, Obama) wants to DESTROY MARRIAGE!

    KalTorak on
  • GoslingGosling Looking Up Soccer In Mongolia Right Now, Probably Watertown, WIRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.

    They'll raise a stink about Roe v. Wade. It's like throwing out the first pitch at this point. No matter who it is or how little they give a shit, they will be asked if they'd overturn Roe v. Wade. And it will be danced around because the nominee knows full well it's coming.

    Gosling on
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  • HenroidHenroid Mexican kicked from Immigration Thread Centrism is Racism :3Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.

    That's a great position!

    Susstein (and by extension, Obama) wants to DESTROY MARRIAGE!

    I can imagine Obama saying, "No, I think rampant divorce is destroying marriage."

    Henroid on
  • HenroidHenroid Mexican kicked from Immigration Thread Centrism is Racism :3Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Gosling wrote: »
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Cass Sunstein would be an interesting choice considering the upcoming gay marriage case; his wikipedia page says he's of the "abolish state marriages, civil unions for everyone!" persuasion.

    They'll raise a stink about Roe v. Wade. It's like throwing out the first pitch at this point. No matter who it is or how little they give a shit, they will be asked if they'd overturn Roe v. Wade. And it will be danced around because the nominee knows full well it's coming.

    Now that you've mentioned it it seems so naked, like I can already seeing it cause a stink. Political environment in our nation is poisonous, etc. :x

    Henroid on
  • DoctorArchDoctorArch Curmudgeon Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Glenn Greenwald had a small discussion about Cass Sunstein recently. Link.

    In short, he supports the "Imperial Presidency" concept.

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  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I think Glenn Greenwald needs to chill out in general.

    Qingu on
  • DoctorArchDoctorArch Curmudgeon Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I agree, but he does raise some pretty salient points about what Sunstein's views demonstrably are regarding unchecked executive power.

    DoctorArch on
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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    ronzo wrote: »
    I'm really going to miss Stevens. Even if i disagreed with one of his decisions, I could usually respect it because I was based solidly in logical, reasonable legal arguments. Not the crazy bullshit Scalia and the like spout.

    Plus he always wore a bow tie.

    What are the odds that the likely picks being female will cause a stink amongst the usual suspects? I mean, 3 vaginae on the Court? Abominable!

    moniker on
  • ResIpsaLoquiturResIpsaLoquitur Not a grammar nazi, just alt-write. Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    No one would ever nominate him, but I would love to see SCOTUS decisions written by Richard Posner. He's too independent a thinker for either side of the aisle.

    His blog is incredibly interesting: http://uchicagolaw.typepad.com/beckerposner/

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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    No one would ever nominate him, but I would love to see SCOTUS decisions written by Richard Posner. He's too independent a thinker for either side of the aisle.

    His blog is incredibly interesting: http://uchicagolaw.typepad.com/beckerposner/

    He's also 71.

    moniker on
  • ResIpsaLoquiturResIpsaLoquitur Not a grammar nazi, just alt-write. Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    moniker wrote: »
    No one would ever nominate him, but I would love to see SCOTUS decisions written by Richard Posner. He's too independent a thinker for either side of the aisle.

    His blog is incredibly interesting: http://uchicagolaw.typepad.com/beckerposner/

    He's also 71.

    That doesn't help his case, no.

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  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Henroid wrote: »
    This is an opportunity to put in a liberal that'll stop the court from swinging to the right so much. (pfft)

    ... no really I hope that happens somehow. I mean what the hell has been with this SCOTUS.
    Stevens and Souter are by far the most liberal members of the court (with Sotomayer being an unknown). You're not going to change the makeup of the court by appointing a liberal.

    Thanatos on
  • enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Kagan is similarly wishy washy on the whole executive power thing. I fully expect her to get the mod and Captain Carrot's scenario will play out in full.

    enlightenedbum on
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  • KalTorakKalTorak One way or another, they all end up in the Undercity.Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    This is an opportunity to put in a liberal that'll stop the court from swinging to the right so much. (pfft)

    ... no really I hope that happens somehow. I mean what the hell has been with this SCOTUS.
    Stevens and Souter are by far the most liberal members of the court (with Sotomayer being an unknown). You're not going to change the makeup of the court by appointing a liberal.

    Yeah, and as far as I know, all the conservatives on the court are hale and vibrant (well, as vibrant as Thomas can get). The next justice to retire will probably be Ginsberg, unfortunately.

    KalTorak on
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    KalTorak wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Henroid wrote: »
    This is an opportunity to put in a liberal that'll stop the court from swinging to the right so much. (pfft)

    ... no really I hope that happens somehow. I mean what the hell has been with this SCOTUS.
    Stevens and Souter are by far the most liberal members of the court (with Sotomayer being an unknown). You're not going to change the makeup of the court by appointing a liberal.

    Yeah, and as far as I know, all the conservatives on the court are hale and vibrant (well, as vibrant as Thomas can get). The next justice to retire will probably be Ginsberg, unfortunately.

    That isn't really unfortunate, she has cancer. The only way that Obama does anything other than recharge the 'liberal wing' of the Court is if Kennedy steps down; which is not necessarily an impossibility. Otherwise after Ginsberg gets replaced we'll basically be set for the next 8-12 years or so of the Court's history. I doubt Breyer's going anywhere for awhile. Maybe in 2015.

    moniker on
  • KalTorakKalTorak One way or another, they all end up in the Undercity.Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Well, it's unfortunate that she has cancer.

    KalTorak on
  • DoctorArchDoctorArch Curmudgeon Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Could you imagine the outcry amongst Republicans if Scalia suddenly keeled over and had to be replaced?

    What sweet, sweet tears those would be.

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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Archgarth wrote: »
    Could you imagine the outcry amongst Republicans if Scalia suddenly keeled over and had to be replaced?

    What sweet, sweet tears those would be.

    Odds are pretty good that you're going to outlive him, so just keep making sure we have Democratic Presidents.

    moniker on
  • TomantaTomanta Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    MSNBC this morning kept harping on how Stevens was the last protestant on the court and how 6 of the justices are Catholics, so Obama can't appoint a Catholic to replace Stevens (oh noes, the pope will be in control and the Supreme Court will always rule in favor of child molestors!).

    Tomanta on
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Tomanta wrote: »
    MSNBC this morning kept harping on how Stevens was the last protestant on the court and how 6 of the justices are Catholics, so Obama can't appoint a Catholic to replace Stevens (oh noes, the pope will be in control and the Supreme Court will always rule in favor of child molestors!).

    It's all part of our plan. It started with the pope-odiles and now it is almost complete. Muahahaha.

    800px-Ganges1876.jpg

    moniker on
  • KalTorakKalTorak One way or another, they all end up in the Undercity.Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Kagan is Jewish, yes?

    ZOMG, two Jewish women on the bench! The country will be plunged into another depression from all the guilt over never having become a doctor!

    KalTorak on
  • AegisAegis Fear My Dance Overshot Toronto, Landed in OttawaRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Tomanta wrote: »
    MSNBC this morning kept harping on how Stevens was the last protestant on the court and how 6 of the justices are Catholics, so Obama can't appoint a Catholic to replace Stevens (oh noes, the pope will be in control and the Supreme Court will always rule in favor of child molestors!).

    You know, in a sample size of nine I would think that if you looked at any random human characteristic, you're going to find at least one that is skewed.

    Hell, given the numerous relevant characteristics that might even (slightly) impact a judge's decision-making, somehow managing to balance all of them to not be skewed at the same time should give the President a medal.

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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Aegis wrote: »
    Tomanta wrote: »
    MSNBC this morning kept harping on how Stevens was the last protestant on the court and how 6 of the justices are Catholics, so Obama can't appoint a Catholic to replace Stevens (oh noes, the pope will be in control and the Supreme Court will always rule in favor of child molestors!).

    You know, in a sample size of nine I would think that if you looked at any random human characteristic, you're going to find at least one that is skewed.

    Hell, given the numerous relevant characteristics that might even (slightly) impact a judge's decision-making, somehow managing to balance all of them to not be skewed at the same time should give the President a medal.

    So what you're saying is that we need a wheelchair bound, Asian, Muslim, Woman who has lived in at least 6 states?

    moniker on
  • GoslingGosling Looking Up Soccer In Mongolia Right Now, Probably Watertown, WIRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    moniker wrote: »
    Aegis wrote: »
    Tomanta wrote: »
    MSNBC this morning kept harping on how Stevens was the last protestant on the court and how 6 of the justices are Catholics, so Obama can't appoint a Catholic to replace Stevens (oh noes, the pope will be in control and the Supreme Court will always rule in favor of child molestors!).

    You know, in a sample size of nine I would think that if you looked at any random human characteristic, you're going to find at least one that is skewed.

    Hell, given the numerous relevant characteristics that might even (slightly) impact a judge's decision-making, somehow managing to balance all of them to not be skewed at the same time should give the President a medal.

    So what you're saying is that we need a wheelchair bound, Asian, Muslim, Woman who has lived in at least 6 states?

    Who has decades of judicial experience, but not one of these entrenched judges.

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  • enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Apparently Stevens is so old that he saw Babe Ruth call his shot in person. (1932 for the non-sports fans)

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  • silence1186silence1186 Character shields down! As a wingmanRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Apparently Stevens is so old that he saw Babe Ruth call his shot in person. (1932 for the non-sports fans)

    I'm not going to lie, this impresses me a great deal.

    On topic: I have to wonder if all these extremely old liberal justices with cancer toughed out Bush's term so that the court wouldn't skew more right. They must have breathed a sigh of relief when Obama was elected.

    silence1186 on
  • enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    They pretty much explicitly did, yes.

    Also, it's depressing to note that Stevens was the swing vote 30 years ago.

    enlightenedbum on
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