18 September 2002
Judging the judge
President Bush would like to fill a vacancy on the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals with Michael McConnell, Presidental Professor of Law at the University of Utah. McConnell is acclaimed by legal scholars on both sides of the political fence; though distinctly conservative, he does not come across as an ideologue.
Just the same, McConnell faces an uphill battle. The Senate Judiciary Committee is jam-packed with Democrats who are persuaded that, for instance, any suggestion that access to abortion might be regulated by the states is an instant slide down the slippery slope to coat-hangers in Tijuana. People for the American Way, a group assembled to counter religious conservatives, now increasingly shrill in its defense of indefensible liberal shibboleths, doesn't like anything about McConnell; they even complain about his membership in the (gasp!) Federalist Society.
The Senate Judiciary Committee gets first crack at McConnell this morning. I wish him luck.