Monday, January 23, 2006

Star confused over Alito

The Kansas City Star on January 23 urged U.S. senators to vote against the confirmation of Supreme Court justice nominee Samuel Alito.

According to the Star, "Alito consistently supported restrictions on abortion."

Of course, this is not true. As NPR reported, "Alito's record on abortion cases is not one-sided. As an appeals court judge in 2000, he helped overturn a New Jersey ban on what opponents call 'partial-birth abortions,' a surgical procedure of extracting a fetus from the womb between the fifth and ninth months of pregnancy."

The Star also noted that it had "supported Bush’s earlier nomination of John Roberts to be chief justice, in part because he understood that the framers intended the Constitution to 'apply to changing conditions.'” The Star went on to say, "Alito appears to think the framers viewed their work as set in stone, which is simply incorrect. "

However, the Star criticized Alito for refusing to "say the crucial Roe v. Wade ruling was 'settled law.'”

Perhaps Alito is allowing for the possibility that conditions have changed since 1973 and that Roe is not set in stone.

Lastly, the Star said Alito "said little of substance during his hearings before the Senate." I feel the same way whenever I read an editorial in the Star.