Thursday, June 23, 2005

Supreme Court nominees. Everyone's talking about who's going to replace Chief Justice Rehnquist (or other aging justices). (It's not as bad as last year when the media decided that there Rehnquist and O'Connor were both quitting and neither did. Serves the media right!) In the past I had thought that a number of Second Circuit judges would be excellent choices. My top had been Senior Judge Jon Newman, although he's now in his 70s. I know Amalya Kearse was Judge Newman's choice -- he did an op ed piece suggesting her appointment during the Bush I presidency -- and she certainly would have been a credible pick and a fine justice. I also like Judge Jose A. Cabranes, although not being from the Federalist school, I doubt he'd even be considered, let alone considered seriously. If a Democrat were in office Guido Calabresi might have been chosen, although because of intemperate remarks about President Bush, his appointment would be fought by the Republicans. But actually, the best pick I could provide to President Bush, if he were inclined to pick a New Yorker, would not be on the Second Circuit, but on the New York State Court of Appeals. Judge Robert Smith would not only be a credit to the High Court, but has the Conservative credentials (Republican, Federalist Society) that he could actually be considered. Here's hoping President Bush looks beyond the short list that has been reported in the media.

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