Friday, October 10, 2008
Wall St. Journal Examines McCain and Obama's Approaches to the Court and the Constitution
Wall St. Journal: Barack Obama: The Present Is Prologue, by Jess Bravin:
...On legal matters, including Supreme Court appointments, an Obama administration would likely be shaped by its leader's strong convictions on constitutional law. As in other areas, Sen. Obama's jurisprudence points to a change from the "strict constructionist" philosophy advocated by Republican presidential contenders from Richard Nixon to John McCain.
Precedents, text and other legal tools can provide a just outcome in "95% of the cases," Sen. Obama said before voting against confirming chief-justice nominee John Roberts. But for the "truly difficult" cases that remain, the "last mile can only be determined on the basis of one's deepest values, one's core concerns, one's broader perspectives on how the world works, and the depth and breadth of one's empathy."
Wall St. Journal: John McCain: Looking to the Framers, by Jess Bravin:
Until he delivered a fiery speech attacking the federal judiciary in May, Sen. John McCain had never made the Supreme Court a focus of his political agenda.
Even in recommending candidates for home-state judgeships, a prized senatorial prerogative, Sen. McCain has deferred to Arizona's junior senator, fellow Republican Jon Kyl...
In judicial nominations, Sen. McCain is likely to rely on advice from the Republican legal establishment, which has helped pull the court firmly to the right in recent years. Backers say that as president, Sen. McCain would use his "gut instinct" to make the final cut among qualified candidates.