Sunday, January 20th, 2019

The book on McCain’s judges


Ann Althouse looks at the question of the kind of judges a President McCain would appoint.

McCain has embraced the generality of a conservative judge, but within that category, there will always be an array of judicial minds. Once he is elected, he’ll be choosing from that array, and it remains fair to wonder whether he will pick more flexible pragmatic judges like O’Connor and Kennedy.

In fact, I think that is the line he probably perceived between Roberts and Alito — if he said what he’s reputed to have said. I think people at the time did see a distinction like that, and even if McCain doesn’t have a deep, lawyerly knowledge of law, he very well may have heard talk that Alito was more of an ideological conservative and Roberts had a instinct toward moderation and consensus.

If that really is the effective range, we could count on completing the transformation of the courts begun so long ago under Ed Meese and President Reagan.

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