Skip to comments.Here's a wacky idea: Anthony Kennedy for Chief Justice!
Posted on 07/08/2005 12:27:20 PM PDT by dangus
With O'Connor already announcing her intention to retire, Rehnquist leaving us with only a question of when, and the strong likelihood of 85-year-old Stevens or Ginsburg retiring by 2008, I propose that Bush should consider nominating Anthony Kennedy to be Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
Don't get me wrong: I'd love to watch Nancy Pelosi's head explode as Clarence Thomas or Antonin Scalia were promoted. But the viscreal thrill of it aside (and yes, I know I'm a junkie when I can refer to the "visceral thrill "of a Supreme Court nomination), it wouldn't do much. "Chief Justice" has become merely an honorary title.
The Democrats are clamoring for nominations in the mold of O'Connor. Kennedy, while having a different focus than O'Connor, is just about exactly as conservative or liberal as O'Connor. And, until a third vacancy occurs, Kennedy will be the swing vote on just about every issue, since Souter, Breyer, Ginsburg and Stevens are all essentially left-wing partisan hacks, and hopefully Renquist's and O'Connor's replacements will join a staunchly conservative bloc with Scalia and Thomas. So, Kennedy will be the de facto chief of the Supreme Court anyway.
Essentially, it buys Bush a perception of centrism at almost zero cost. The public perception will be of a perfectly balanced court being created by Bush: four liberals, four conservatives, and the Chief Justice as the ideological centrist. And yet, Bush will have steered the court as hard to the right as is presently possible.
Isn't the latest rumor that Kennedy will also be out by the end of the year? Not much point in promoting him with so little time left, even as a sop to the left.
Whoops, sorry. It's Stevens, not Kennedy.
Wacky idea? No. How about a logical idea? Judge Roy Moore would make an excellent justice.
I've heard rumors of Stevens and Ginsburg, but nothing about Kennedy. He's the 2nd youngest (or darn near it) on the bench, has not had any publicly known illness, and knows darn well that his vote will decide almost every contentious case that the court hears. I can't picture him going.
Make way for the Garza Court or the Luttig Court.
Unfortunately, it wouldn't keep the dems from filibustering Bush's nominees....and in the process President Bush would be "rewarding" bad behaviour...
and making Scalia and Thomas look foolish..after all, they are the next in line for a Republican president.
Why do people care about who the Chief Justice is anyway? Has it ever held any power further then that of an Associate Justice?
It's either a stupid brilliant idea or a brilliant stupid idea, but it does prove that some damned interesting ideas crop up on this forum.
Bush should do this as part of a deal. He could nominate Ginsburg as Chief Justice is he gets up-or-down votes on his nominees as part of the deal. Let the Donks have their symbolic victory, while the Republicans get to nominate who they want.
Read history for yourself about who passes out the cases and assigns judges to the circuit courts for overseeing.
The kook lacks a judicial temperment. He is more a governor type than a judge.
I was thinking this already. Since the chief justice really has no more power than any other member of the court, it's a good opportunity for Bush to elevate a "moderate" (i.e., liberal) for political points at essentially no ideological cost.
I'd prefer Scalia.
NO. After his recent votes to kill private property rights via eminent domain and destroy states' rights via the commerce clause, Kennedy deserves to be impeached, not elevated.
The problem with that is as follows: The CJ is, essentially the Chief Administrator of the US court system and has additional duties as follows:
If the Chief Justice is in the majority on a Supreme Court case, he or she may decide to write the Opinion of the Court, or may assign it to an associate justice of his or her choice.
Presides when the Senate tries impeachments of the President of the United States
Two Chief Justices, Salmon P. Chase and William Rehnquist, have had the duty of presiding over Presidential impeachments and trials--Chase in 1868 over the proceedings of President Andrew Johnson and Rehnquist in 1999 over the proceeding against Bill Clinton.
Presides over the impeachment trial of the Vice President if the Vice President is serving as Acting President (not a Constitutional responsibility but a rule of the Senate).
Officiates at the inauguration of the President of the United States. This is a traditional, not a constitutional, responsibility of the Chief Justice. All federal and state judges, as well as notaries public, are empowered by law to administer oaths and affirmations.
Serves as the Chancellor of the Smithsonian Institution.
Serves as the head of the Judicial Conference of the United States, the chief administrative body of the U.S. federal courts. The Judicial Conference is empowered by the Rules Enabling Act to promulgate rules to ensure the smooth operation of the federal courts. Major portions of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Evidence have been adopted by most state legislatures and are considered canonical by American law schools.
That's a fair amount of power to give a "moderate."
oh i forgot - thats what we do right? impeach people who decide against us? Thats autocracy, not democracy. We dont live in Iran...
Give them an inch and they'll take a mile.
How about Jim Robinson?
That's the best idea I've read since O'Connor retired. We get our majority, the libs get appearances. Plus Bush gets the added bonus of being seen as "moderate" for appointing a woman.
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