So, I am reviewing the many reactions to the nomination on NPR (Reactions to the Alito Nomination), and the left seems to make the same tired objections, which I think are invalid.
1. Fairness Demands a Nominee with Similar Viewpoint to O’Connor
No, fairness demands appointing a judge that will interpret, not legislate from the bench. We need a better type of judge, not just one in the mold of O’Connor.
Also, fairness demands a judge that represents the people, not just a "balance" between left and right. While I don’t want a bunch of hyperfundie Christian conservatives on the bench, arguably, the people have elected a conservative president and congress. A conservative, therefore, is more mainstream than out of the mainstream. But we need to careful not to have a totally homogenous court. I am sorry that Janis Rogers Brown was not nominated instead of another white male.
Just because O’Connor was a swing vote doesn’t mean we need to put another swing voter on the court – I think many of her votes swung the wrong way (left). Good legislation should not, in general, need a swing vote – it should easily gain a majority. Of course, there will be edge cases that, for reasons of timing or complexity, may need a more nuanced approach, but I’d hate to make a choice on outliers while making bad judgements on the majority of cases.
2. Electing a Conservative Means Turning Back the Clock on Civil Rights
Marcia Greenberger of the National Women’s Law Center intimates that overturning Roe v. Wade, or issues of "employment discrimination" (read reverse discrimination in the case of quotas) means "turning back the clock." She opines that many of these laws "are hanging by a thread" and will only take one vote to overturn.
But the reason that these are "hanging by a thread," in many cases, is because they are bad legislation. A conservative should help to unseat this awful legislation and restore balance to our high court – not balance between left and right, but freedom from our very leftist, anti-life ideology
3. Nominating a Conservative is Capitulating to the "Religious Right"
Please. The fact is, modern hyper-liberalism is, thankfully, a waning ideology, and neo-conservatism, which grew out of the intellectual left, with it’s rational (rather than emotional) and practical (rather than idealistic, impractical) approach to solving problems is taking over. The religious right just happens to be riding this wave, which is bigger than the right – it’s the Newt Gingriches and other neocon thinkers of the world that are making sense in our polical market of ideas.