This guy John Roberts has been a dead-lock since day one, and his accession to the top spot on the Supreme Court came as a welcome surprise (or not) to the Bush administration. To quote John Tierney of The New York Times in quite an amusing article, "the guy has made a career out of not talking. Why should he start now?"
I am of course speaking of Roberts and his tightlippedness (sp?) during the Senate hearings. What surprises me is that there is not more rancor and more questioning. The C-SPAN cameras caught Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) doing a crossword puzzle and Sen. Charles Schumer talking to himself, as Dana Milbank points out in The Washington Post.
I guess that when it comes to Katrina or John Roberts, the court of public opinion and attention voted long ago.
Still, there was some signs of oppositional life. Sen. Joseph Biden (D-DE) told Roberts to "go ahead and keep shutting up." C'mon, Biden, you know that this guy's got nothing. A certain amount of it, I am sure, is really because he cannot speak about matters that the court may rule on. If you remember, the same issue of not talking came up in 1993 with Ruth Bader Ginsburg. For many issues, they REALLY can't say anything.
Although it seems weaselly to sneak a nomination hearing in during a national crisis, if not now, when? The nation must go on and function. Opposition forces must now concentrate on the other opening in the court that will have to be filled on the eventual departure of Sandra Day O'Connor. That could be much more important than Roberts as Chief Justice. Think of the possible block: Roberts, Thomas, Scalia, [NEW GUY/GAL].
It is equally as possible that Roberts will be another David Souter, so who knows?
Year in review
4 months ago