Saturday, January 21, 2006

Parsing Alito, part 2

Just in case anyone thought Sammy was only evasive (or contradictory) when questioned by Republicans (uh huh), let's take a look at some of his responses (I can't really call them answers, now, can I?) to Senator Leahy:
LEAHY: But why wouldn't it be constitutional for the -- or wouldn't it be constitutional for the Congress to outlaw Americans from using torture?
ALITO: And Congress has done that, and it is certainly -- it is certainly an expression of the very deep value of our country.
LEAHY: And if the president were to authorize somebody or say they would immunize somebody from doing that, he wouldn't have that power, would he?
ALITO: Well, Senator, I think that the important points are that the president has to follow Constitution and the laws, and it is up to Congress to exercise its legislative power. But as to specific issues that might come up, I really need to know the specifics. I need to know what was done and why it was done and hear the arguments of the issue.
A classic "yes, but no" response, isn't it? "The President has to follow the ... laws" but "I need to hear the arguments of the issue". Um, Sammy, what arguments could there possibly be that would explain why the President could choose not to follow the laws? It's once again obvious that Alito has no intention of sticking to his Constitutional role of arbiter of the law regardless of personal belief or who's in the docket, isn't it?!
Here's a quick hitter on how clearly Sammy wants nothing to do with revealing his mind to the committee:
LEAHY: Do you continue to hold the position you took in your opinion, or do you now agree with the majority? They're right and you're wrong?
ALITO: Well, Senator, I haven't had occasion to think that what I said in that case was correct. But let me just explain what was going on there.

Can anyone outside his head even fathom what he's talking about in this response, even given that I didn't provide the specifics? "I haven't had occasion to think that what I said in that case was correct"?! Huh?
Here's the most infamous Alito moment from the first day, wherein he was asked about his membership in, and job seeking use of, the reactionary Concerned Alumni of Princeton:
LEAHY: ...why in heaven's name were you proud of being part of CAP?
ALITO: Well, Senator, I have wracked my memory about this issue, and I really have no specific recollection of that organization. But since I put it down on that statement, then I certainly must have been a member at that time.
. . . And the issue that had rankled me about Princeton for some time was the issue of ROTC. I was in ROTC when I was at Princeton, and the unit was expelled from the campus, and I thought that was very wrong. I had a lot of friends who were against the war in Vietnam, and I respected their opinions, but I didn't think that it was right to oppose the military for that reason.

Sure, Sammy, everyone joins a racist, near fascist, organization in college, and lists it on their job rèsumès for years, only to "have no specific recollection" of it. Happens all the time to me. And for good measure, Sammy then attempted to derail the line of questioning by talking about how upset he was that ROTC was kicked off campus for a couple years while he was there, as if that had something to do with his joining (and maintaining a membership in) an organization whose purpose was to actively restrict admissions to the university to white men. How can anybody in a position of responsibility, even those in lockstep with the anti-Americans on the Right, even come close to justifying voting to place this man on the Supreme Court? We'll see next time, as Orrin Hatch tries to salvage Alito's "good" name by playing footsies with him.


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