U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has announced he will retire this summer, giving President Barack Obama his second appointment to our nation’s highest court.
A Republican, appointed by Republican President Gerald Ford, Stevens was originally considered a center-right vote, but with the extreme ideological shift of the court in recent years he has since become the leader of the bench’s “liberal bloc.” In that capacity, the 89-year-old Stevens gamely and nobly survived the Bush administration, saving the appointment of his replacement for a president not seeking to place our Constitution in the hands of a radically partisan, activist court.
In addition to being its liberal leader, Stevens is also the court’s lone W.A.S.P., the other eight justices being Roman Catholics and Jews of varying ethnicities. With that heritage in mind, and with an eye toward diversity, many court observers expect President Obama to appoint another white, Protestant to the “W.A.S.P. seat” on the bench, much like the first President Bush appointed Clarence Thomas to fill the “black seat” vacated by Justice Thurgood Marshall.
The Republican Senator from Cloud Cuckoo Land chimes in:
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), a member of the committee, issued a statement calling for Obama to avoid “activist judges.”
You mean the kinda “activist judges” that ignore a century of legal precedent on campaign finance? Yeah, well, eat me.