Tuesday, May 04, 2010


President Obama has interviewed the four candidates who are said to be at the top of his list: Solicitor General Elena Kagan; U.S. appeals court Judge Merrick Garland; U.S. 9th Circuit Court Judge Sidney Thomas; and Diane Wood of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago.

That's quite the list for any President to pick from, but it's the Supreme Court nomination that makes this so important. From what I've read of the final four, (sounds like American Idol) I prefer Diane Wood.

She has a progressive record on issues that are sure to generate political opposition from social conservatives, but finds herself admired from both camps for her mainstream jurisprudence, tempered by a respect for precedent and a narrow focus on the facts at hand.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Wood, who is about to turn 60, has been a friend of the President since their college days, so she doesn't come to this final four list as a stranger. It doesn't mean that her long road toward eligibility was without hardship either.

On the Joe Scarborough show last Monday, guest Pat Buchanan mentioned: "If nominated and confirmed to the high court, she would be the only person on that bench without an Ivy League law degree, and the only Protestant." I have to say thank you Pat for pointing that out. It might be the most mentioned attribute for her eligibility to become our next Supreme.

In a Miami paper it was mentioned that retiring Justice John Paul Stevens also attended Georgetown U as an undergraduate, a college where Wood still teaches a class in civil procedure part-time. That article went so far to say Students privately describe her courses as tough but very fair, and say Professor Wood is a knowledgeable, hands-on teacher and good listener. Will these attributes help as a Supreme? I'm going to stick to her ability to properly interpret the law.

I stumbled on a list of pertinent opinions from decades of judiciary history. I'm not going to fill space with that here, but what I can tell you, It's extensive (as you'd guess) and I'm more than willing to bet our President will chose Diane Wood for his nominee.

Will there be debate? Sure.

Will it turn into a fight? You becha!

No comments: