Bush Selects Alito for Supreme Court
By Fred Barbash and Peter Baker
Washington Post Staff Writers
Monday, October 31, 2005; 7:45 AM
President Bush today will name appeals court Judge Samuel A. Alito to the U.S. Supreme Court, according to a source close to the White House. Alito, 55, serves on the Philadelphia-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, where his record on abortion rights and church-state issues has been widely applauded by conservatives and criticized by liberals.
Alito, appointed to the appeals court in 1990 by George H.W. Bush, has been a regular for years on the White House high court short list. He was also among those proposed by conservative intellectuals as an alternative to Harriet Miers, the White House counsel who withdrew as the nominee last week.
Some Democrats, including minority leader Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev), have threatened to oppose Alito, however.
Alito would be Bush's second choice in a month for the seat being vacated by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who has announced her retirement but has remained on the court pending confirmation of a successor.
Alito's resume, including a degree from the Yale Law School and service in the Reagan administration Justice Department, is very much unlike Miers', who had no appellate experience, and very much like that of Chief Justice John Roberts.
Like Chief Justice John Roberts, Alito served during the Reagan administration in the office of Solicitor General, which argues on behalf of the government in the Supreme Court.
Unlike Roberts, he has opined from the bench on both abortion rights, church-state separation and gender discrimination to the pleasure of conservatives and displeasure of liberals.
Nice save by the President.
It puts the democrats in a position of either letting this slide because the republicans have the votes in the end to approve this guy or fighting it and thereby distracting from the momentum of the CIA investigation/indictments and the Harriet Mirs withdrawal. The republicans want a fight so that we can be put in the obstructionist mold and to distract from past failures of the president.