A Pro-Life Democrat

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I'm cautiously optimistic.

With all of the "bad news"--the Spectre of Specter and such like--the elevation of Senator Harry Reid of Nevada to the seat of Senate Minority Leader vacated by Tom Daschle sounds like wonderfully good news. He sounds like fiscal democrat (we can debate the merits of that elsewhere) but a social republican. NPR reported that he is pro-life (what that means in their parlance might require some investigation) and anti-gun-control (not one of my favorite positions). But if Mr. Reid can begin to work with Republicans on some of these issues we might be in a very good place on life issues.

He did say that he didn't think much of the elevation of Clarence Thomas to Chief Justice, but that he would be much more sanguine about Scalia. I'm not keen on Scalia since he announced himself a better interpreter of Church doctrine than our current pope. But from what I've seen of his decisions, they seem well-reasoned and usually on "our" side.

Anyway, it's wait and see time.

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Since Republicans now spend like liberal Democrats, someone who is fiscally Democratic doesn't sound so bad.

Reid might be willing throw Bush a bone with Scalia, but that doesn't mean anything necessarily. First of all, the CJ gets no more power than the freshman Associate Justice when it comes to deciding what a ruling is going to be; in other words, a vote is a vote is a vote. Second, Scalia would be preferable to the dems because he's almost seventy and probably won't be CJ too terribly long; Thomas on the other hand is in his mid-fifties and could potentially serve as Chief Justice as long as Rehnquist (around twenty years).

When it comes time appoint Scalia or Thomas's replacement (or if Bush nominates someone from outside SCOTUS to be CJ), then we'll see where Reid's loyalties truly lie (incidentally, he did support the filibusters of those ten appelate court nominees unless I'm very mistaken). That goes double for when Stevens or O'Connor resign, since replacing either of them with a pro-lifer would change the ideological makeup of the court.



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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on November 19, 2004 8:27 AM.

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