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McCain Picks Fight Over Justices

Updated 1:40 p.m.
By Juliet Eilperin
INDIANAPOLIS -- Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) told the National Sheriff's Association this morning he would establish a public safety broadband network and nominate conservative judges who would emphasize the rights of victims over defendants, while simultaneously criticizing his Democratic opponent for supporting liberal judges.

While the presumptive GOP nominee drew laughs when he said that in the midst of so many sheriffs, "I've never felt so safe," he sparked his loudest applause of the morning when he promised to block Congress from directing federal funds for specific law enforcement projects.

"Earmark spending runs against the public interest in many ways, and especially when public safety is in the balance. And that's why, as president, I will veto every bill with earmarks, until the Congress stops sending bills with earmarks," he told the crowd. "It may take a while for Congress to adjust," he said, pausing for a moment and chuckling, "but sooner or later they'll figure out that there's a new sheriff in town."

McCain emphasized that he would seek out Supreme Court appointees along the lines of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, saying they're the kind of jurists who will rule in favor of crime victims.

"They will be the kind of judges who believe in giving everyone in a criminal court their due: justice for the guilty and the innocent, compassion for the victims, and respect for the men and women of law enforcement," he said. "In all of criminal justice policy, we must put the interests of law-abiding citizens first -- and above all, the rights of victims."

Singling out the recent Supreme Court decision that overturned a Louisiana law instituting the death penalty as punishment for raping a child, McCain criticized the five justices in the majority for substituting "their judgment for that of the people of Louisiana, their legislators, their governor, the trial judge, the jury, the appellate judge, and the other four justices of the Supreme Court. It's a peculiar kind of moral evolution that disregards the democratic process, and inures solely to the benefit of child rapists."

While McCain noted that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) criticized the decision, he suggested that Obama would back the same kind of liberal justices who overruled the Louisiana law this month.

"More to the point, why is it that the majority includes the same justices he usually holds out as the models for future nominations?" he said. "My opponent may not care for this particular decision, but it was exactly the kind of opinion we could expect from an Obama Court."

McCain also promised to establish a better communication network for law enforcement officers in light of recent problems they've encountered with their radio communications.

"So that police, fire-fighters, and other public safety agencies can freely communicate with one another, we will build a long overdue national, interoperable public safety broadband network," he said. "You and all your colleagues in law enforcement need seamless communication across every agency and jurisdiction for emergency response... Just last year, I introduced a bill that provided for more than twice the capacity that the FCC has currently set aside for public safety. Special interests in Washington want the FCC to auction off more of that spectrum than I do. But no matter what price it might fetch at auction, it should be available for fighting crime and saving lives."

Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor questioned why McCain would suggest only "an Obama Court" would produce rulings like the kind the Court just issued concerning child rapists, when the GOP senator backed four of the five judges who just ruled the death penalty was not appropriate for such crimes.

"Senator McCain voted for 4 of the 5 judges who supported this flawed ruling, which is why this attack is particularly disingenuous and nothing more than the same old Bush-style politics that the American people are tired of," Vietor said. "Senator McCain knows full well that Senator Obama disagreed with the decision and believes that certain criminals who commit heinous crimes like child rape should be subject to the death penalty."

McCain voted for the appointments of Justices Anthony M. Kennedy, David H. Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen G. Breyer. He did not vote on Justice's John Paul Stevens' appointment, which took place before McCain came to the Senate.

By Post Editor  |  July 1, 2008; 11:54 AM ET
 
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Comments

I don't know what Supreme Court McCain is talking about but the judges that he would use as examples of who he would appoint have ruled time and time again in favor of corporations that have committed crimes and not individual citizens who have been the victims of these crimes. McCain is a two faced liar, who would be a complete disaster as President!

Posted by: Amy | July 2, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

McCain emphasized that he would seek out Supreme Court appointees along the lines of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Alito

McCain voted for the appointments of Justices Anthony M. Kennedy, David H. Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen G. Breyer.


Do as I say not as I do. How come he forgot Scalia? Didnt he vote for him?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 2, 2008 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Janice | July 2, 2008 6:02 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | July 2, 2008 6:01 AM | Report abuse

Obama didn't oppose the the decisions made by the supreme court, he agreed that the death penalty should be a option in rape cases. Second, why doesn't Mccain talk about over turning Roe vs Wade taking woment rights away. Another gaffe for Mccain.

Posted by: Linda | July 2, 2008 6:00 AM | Report abuse

Does Mccain know that Obama agreed with the supreme court. If Mccain wants to talk about something why don't he talk about roe vs wade. Why don't he tell those Hillary supporters how he plans to over turn Roe vs wade and take their rights away. The media is bias towards Mccain because he wants to continue the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans like the media. Vote Obama.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 2, 2008 5:53 AM | Report abuse

"A note to add is I think it is I think it is a good point for McCain that he voted for judges that do not agree with him politically.

This to me is a real life example of a bipartisan approach to politics"
==============
I guess it is true as far as that goes, out of the 8 Justices that McCain has had to vote for, 6 of them were Republican appointees, which means that the Democrats were able to demonstrate their "bi-partisanship" quite a few more times than McCain and his fellow Republicans, don't you think? At any rate, Obama has said that he admires Souter (appointed by Bush 41), and Ginsberg (Clinton appointee), and would be more than likely to appoint similar jurors. Let me also point out that although we hear about the big cases the SC decides, and the judgments appear contentious, this year the Court actually had more nearly unanimous decisions than not. The so-called "Liberal" side of the Court is actually pretty moderate when you look at their decisions as a whole.

Posted by: radical_moderate | July 1, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

A note to add is I think it is I think it is a good point for McCain that he voted for judges that do not agree with him politically.

This to me is a real life example of a bipartisan approach to politics such as several bills he has sponsored. Since Obama platform runs on concepts such as unity and bipartisanship can Obama supporters please provide me concrete evidence such as bill sponsorship and voting records that indicates Obama is more of a uniter than McCain?

Posted by: Cryos | July 1, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

" I will never accept this brand of malicious people to run rampant in the country or take the White House of which they have no respect...they just what the symbol power...not without a fight! EVER!!"
============
You Hillary lunatics never give up! Maybe if we got Obama a sex change you'd like him better?

Posted by: GObama | July 1, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

I think the criticisms of Obama that I read below have no connection to reality. Listen you Repubs and angry Hillary supporters, if you're trying to throw mud on somebody, it ain't going to stick unless there is some basis of truth behind it. Honestly, give it up! Obama is not a muslim, he is not a flip-flop, and he has a history of laudable accomplishments especially on behalf of the American people. This is all well documented. You're going to have to try something else.

Posted by: Mark | July 1, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

My two cents* lol. I'm really with it today ;)

Posted by: Cryos | July 1, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

"Senator McCain voted for 4 of the 5 judges who supported this flawed ruling, which is why this attack is particularly disingenuous and nothing more than the same old Bush-style politics that the American people are tired of"

As a general rule republicans will not hold up nominations of judges if the judge is a good candidate with a proven record. This often extends to "liberal" judges as long as they show the law to be the basis for their judgements republicans will respect the president.

In my opinion democrats seem to act more partisan and block nominations even if the judge has a solid record.

What worries me is statements from Obama like he would appoint judges with a "world view." Isn't the job of the Supreme court and other courts to judge laws against the constitution and make decisions on that basis? My understanding is that legislation is supposed to be the job of the legislative branch and the judicial branch's job is interpretation of constituional law.

If we willingly accept allowing judges to make decisions on their personal views or on "world views" that to me opens up the door to willingly allow our constitutional rights to be eroded if the issue in question does not conform to the current "world view." My two sense; take it as you will.

Posted by: Cryos | July 1, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Oh and while we are at it..let's review Obama's military record..OOPS! None! Lets review Obama's long dedication to the country. OOPS! none! Let's review Obama's dedication to his church! OOPS! Dissed! Lets' review Obama's stand on anything..OOPS! Changed my mind, pulled the wrong switch. Let's review Obama's ever shifting beliefs, which his staff calls pragmatic...LOL!! What a joke

Posted by: Cheryll | July 1, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

I see shifty Obama has got his wind generators on this site...Such a high level, intelligent bunch of foulmouthed followers. This is the kind of unity and hatefulness Obama inspires....Unity?? Never! All out civil war against Obama and his cult..YES!! Because that may truly be where we are headed. I will never accept this brand of malicious people to run rampant in the country or take the White House of which they have no respect...they just what the symbol power...not without a fight! EVER!!

Posted by: Cheryll | July 1, 2008 7:35 PM | Report abuse

McCain would choose different Supreme Court justices than Obama? Well, maybe he would have to be careful. Remember his role in the Savings and Loan Scandal? Remember the Keating 5? Ooops. We're not suppose to have that good of a memory.

Posted by: abby0802 | July 1, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

McCain needs to stop talking about Obama - he doesn't matter - the wars do!!

We need to attack Iran, Syria, North Korea, and China ASAP!!!

McCain, I hope use all those new nukes you plan to make, on nuking these evil nations!

We must attack them before they attack us!

Obama would surrender this nation to China on his first day in office!!! We can't let this happen.

NUKES NOW!

Posted by: Nuker | July 1, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

McCain will reign in spending like Reagan did (not!), like Bush has (not!)

Planned Parenthood agrees with this court decision. The theory is that children might shy away from testifying against a parent who would be executed due to teh testimony. It might also scar teh kid worse than the abuse did.

McCain throws out all this stuff, some more valid than others, some totally ridiculous in the theory that the accum,ulation of negatives about Obama will build up in independents' minds, especially those not into the details in the news, and their memories will only recall the negs. Thus 10% believe Obama is Islamic which is completely stupid and near 50% still think Saddam was behind 9/11 which is ludicrous.

Posted by: Fred Fep | July 1, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

I like to sit in my bedroom and touch myself, saying in a low voice "Jake HUSSEIN D... Jake HUSSEIN D..." until I reach clarity and remember to say "John SIDNEY McCain."

Then, because I am old and have a number of exotic inhibitions, I must blog constantly on this and other sites before little Jake is ready to come out and play again.

Jake HUSSEIN D...
Jake HUSSEIN D....

Posted by: JakeD | July 1, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

It's interesting that McCain should mention that Obama's favorite (current) Supreme Court Justices voted with the majority on a decision with which Obama disagrees:

"More to the point, why is it that the majority includes the same justices he usually holds out as the models for future nominations?" he said. "My opponent may not care for this particular decision, but it was exactly the kind of opinion we could expect from an Obama Court."

Conservative columnist George Will noted recently that McCain's favorite Supreme Court Justices, Roberts and Alito, the two he has promised to clone if elected president (along with Scalia and Thomas, also conservatives, and Kennedy, the swing vote), ruled AGAINST a provision of the McCain-Feingold law, the "Millionaire's Amendment."

After reporting that Roberts and Alito repudiated part of McCain's signature legislation, finding it unconstitutional, Will observes, "Yet McCain promises to nominate jurists like them. Is that believable?"

I wonder if Will's column is what gave McCain the idea to fault Obama for liking judges who don't always agree with him. We could say that the McCain-Feingold decision, one that clearly benefits millionaires running for office, is "exactly the kind of opinion we could expect from [a McCain] Court."

Posted by: DoTheMath | July 1, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

THE ARTICLE NOTES: "...McCain criticized the five justices in the majority for substituting "their judgment for that of the people of Louisiana, their legislators, their governor, the trial judge, the jury, the appellate judge, and the other four justices of the Supreme Court. It's a peculiar kind of moral evolution that disregards the democratic process, and inures solely to the benefit of child rapists." I WONDER IF HIS ANALYSIS AND COMMENT WOULD BE THE SAME IF INSTEAD OF "...child rapists..." YOU SUBSTITUTED THAT THE BENEFITS SHOULD GO TO "...armed robbers..." or "...home burglars..." or "...petty thieves..." or "...tax delinquents..." (OOOPPPPSSS, NOT TAX DELINQUENTS, BECAUSE THE MCCAINS FORGOT TO PAY SEVERAL THOUSAND OF THEIR TAXES UNTIL THE GOVERNMENT REMINDED THEM. See http://www.lajollalight.com/news/246346-mccains-have-issues-with-local-tax-on-condo.---More McCain politics as usual, or was it just another senior moment!

Posted by: Benighse | July 1, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Just as John McCain has collaborated with the Vietnamese enemy, he has been collaborating with the leaders of the Mexican Reconquista movement for some time. Among other outrages, he was the keynote speaker at the 2004 annual conference of the National Council of La Raza. He told the crowd: "It is in our national interest to bring the 8 to 12 million undocumented immigrants out of the shadows and allow them an opportunity to become citizens of this great nation."

After the massive illegal alien protests last year, McCain made the following statement: "If such demonstrations continue, I think we will have a bill for the President to sign soon. The more debate, the more demonstrations, the more likely we will prevail."

Under Sen. McCain's immigration bill, even members of Mexican drug gangs would receive amnesty by simply signing a statement in which they renounce their gang affiliation.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 1, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

The very Judges McCain says he would appoint Overturned and Ruled Unconstitutional McCain Finegold so called Campaign Finance Reform. Either he doesn't know how to write Lawful Legislation or he against all the recently Republican appointed Judges.

Posted by: Fareed H. Ansari | July 1, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

With his deliberate obfuscation and inadvertant screw-ups, McCain is contributing to the dumbing down of the political conversation in our country.

Contrast the low-level illogic on display here with Obama's wise and literate speech on patriotism yesterday. No contest: we either vote for the class dunce or the valedictorian. We have had eight years of the class clown, so I think it is time for a change.

Posted by: dee | July 1, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

We need Supreme Court justices that can interpret the Constitution using the intent of the founders as the theory for interpretation. Otherwise, they just become an unelected third branch of government, interpreting the Constitution like a Rorschach blot to find in it that which they which to find, discerning penumbras and emanations where there is no language and no intent.

Posted by: Ed | July 1, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

The more McCain talks the more stupidity he shows. Why does he NOT release ALL of his military records?

Posted by: Westexacan | July 1, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

"I would trust McCain over Obama to reign in our spending (except for military spending)."
==============
ummm..since you presumably trust Obama on decreasing military spending alone, aren't you underestimating the importance of that issue? Congress just ok'ed another 160 BILLION dollars to fund the War effort till the end of Bush's term. Obama wants to not only do a measured withdrawal (saving money in the long term), but he would put a boot to the rear of the Iraqis to start paying for their own rebuilding and security.

In addition, I suggest that you read up on McCain's economic proposals, his tax cuts alone would continue the steep deficit spending of the "borrow and spend" Bush administration without any explanation from team McCain on how he plans to pay for continued tax cuts...he doesn't even mention the endless billions needed to fight the War on 2 Fronts, BTW. Cutting non-essential "earmarks" will save about 18 Billion dollars...not even close to covering McCain's proposed expenditures.

Obama has fully disclosed how he plans to pay for the programs needed to jump start this economy starting with actions that will help 95% of Americans such as new tax cuts to the middle-class, and access to affordable Healthcare for all Americans. Obama has not sugarcoated it either, the wealthy in this country will have to pay more in taxes, but considering the tax advantages they have enjoyed living in Bushland for 8 years, advantages that have seen their incomes increase by 9% while the rest of us have seen a virtual decline in income, I think that it is a rational sacrifice to ask of the top 2% of Americans.

Posted by: radical_moderate | July 1, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

McBush is getting senile in his old age.

Posted by: Daddio on the Paddio | July 1, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

The GOP have completely failed America for many years now. Why would we reward that ?

Posted by: PulSamsara | July 1, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I keep hearing he is running as a moderate compared to Shrub, but.... then again, he just reads the toid blossom script.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | July 1, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) told the National Sheriff's Association this morning he would establish a public safety broadband network...

"Earmark spending runs against the public interest in many ways, and especially when public safety is in the balance. And that's why, as president, I will veto every bill with earmarks, until the Congress stops sending bills with earmarks," he told the crowd."

Spending is spending, Juan McCain. You think funding for this "public safety broadband network" is going to come from somewhere other than taxpayers?

That doesn't sound like small government to me.

Posted by: Thomas | July 1, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Re: McCain's Current Score

As long as McCain does not mention any OBAMA in his speech, he is doing fine.

"Obama opposed, Obama opposed, Obama opposed...." Save your energy: It is not worth.

Posted by: peace4world | July 1, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

It's obvious that several are not literate on the subject. Senator McCain at least has a record of standing up to earmarks. Where has Senator Obama been since he's been a senator???? Campaigning..........

Posted by: charlieb | July 1, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

"Does no one realize that McCain's "pork" is what keeps this country running every day?"

I'm Confused. By "pork" do you mean "pork barrel" or pigs?

The term pork barrel, while literally meaning a barrel in which pork is kept, is more commonly used as a political metaphor for the appropriation of government spending for projects that are intended primarily to benefit particular constituents or campaign contributors. This usage originated in American English with reference to gifts of salt pork in a barrel by slave-owners to their slaves.

So the fact that McCain spends money on his friends, like the oil companies and drug companies, our economy is better? Why did that work for the last 8 years? Unless, of course, you think that the economy is running well right now.

I think you actually mean that McCain owns pigs that run inside of gigantic hamster wheels. The hamster wheel is hooked up to a power generator, which runs the power for wall street stocks. I think that is more realistic.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 1, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

McCain is part of the cause of the "out of control spending".

Republicans no longer support a smaller government - they support an outsourced government (outsourced to their friends companies who rip off the government in return, with the blessing of the republicans).

Posted by: Anonymous | July 1, 2008 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Well, something needs to be done about our country's out of control spending. I would trust McCain over Obama to reign in our spending (except for military spending).

Posted by: dcp | July 1, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Wah...I was a POW in Vietnam. Wah...I deserve to be president. Wah..wah..vote for me or you're an Al Qaida sympathizer.

Posted by: The Real McCain | July 1, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

How will these sheriffs get the federal money they enjoy without earmarks?

Posted by: Earmarks | July 1, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Three of the five justices in the majority were appointed by Republican presidents.

Posted by: Mark | July 1, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

McCain sounds more like a joke every day.

Posted by: DenisR | July 1, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

McCain supports torture. He is not fit to be an american leader.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 1, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Does no one realize that McCain's "pork" is what keeps this country running every day?

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | July 1, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

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