Besides being voted "Most Likely To Be Mistaken In Public For Rick Warren", Justice Samuel Alito is a very smart guy. Bush didn't go with the woman like I thought he would, but then again that was because I though Bush would bow to pressure to keep 2 women on SCOTUS, good for him that he picked the best person and not the best woman. Nice to show a little backbone now and then.
I haven't gotten into all the lefty complaints about Alito's "record" of impairing minority rights and limiting right to sue by raising the bar for successfully presenting suit, but if that criticism is as weak as his supposed snti-abortionism, then that's likely a load of horse puckey as well. He comes across as someone interested in applying the law fairly, which for some people means he doesn't seek to apply the law to address past grievances and therefore he's a bigot. Whatever.
I think the Democrats in the Senate won't be doing themselves any favors by pushing his supposed extremism on abortion as a reason to disqualify him, because the counter is that he was also part of a unanimous three-judge panel that struck down a New Jersy law banning partial birth abortion. Surely a zealot would have found a way to dissent. Ah ha! Not so fast! A truly brilliant zealot would have concurred to have exactly this opinion in his back pocket should he ever be nominated to the Supreme Court! CONSPIRACY!
The attitude about who's a conservative whacko that is displayed by the left reminds me of the helicoper door gunner in Full Metal Jacket who shot at anyone on the ground. When asked how he could tell which people were the VC, the gunner responded, "If they run, they're VC. If they stand still, they're very disciplined VC." In essence, anyone credible nominated by Bush is the VC, and Door-Gunners Ted, Barbara, Dianne and Chuck are going to lock and load.
Fortunately, John Roberts was smarter than the rest of the room combined at his hearings, and I belive that if Alito is any less bright or well-versed in the issues than Roberts, it's not by much. It's a lot of fun watching the Dems twist themselves into pretzels of rage while the nominee sits there pleasantly, watching an adult make a fool of himself so NARAL will send a check for the next campaign cycle.
And the talk of a filibuster -- heh, don't make my day. This ain't the guy you want to filibuster. He has 15 years of cases, 300 or so published opinions, a couple of thousand cases under his belt. He's not stealth anything, and he's eminently qualified by any rational standard. Assess his record, and do your duty and vote. Calling a filibuster on this one will effectively eliminate the judicial filibuster, I DARE them to do it.
Bigger fights loom over the replacement of Ginsburg and the other liberals on the court, fights that may not happen while Bush is President. I don't see Bush insisting on fairness and putting a dyed-in-the-wool liberal on the court to replace Ginsburg. If you think the Miers flap was bad, wait until he picks some yahoo off the 9th Circuit who's slightly to the left of Karl Marx and tries to sell it to the GOP as "uniting not dividing". I think the White House has learned a lesson about how passionately conservatives feel about the Supreme Court and how effective the organized opprobrium of the conservative apparatus can be.