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Democrats, GOP face off over Goodwin Liu nomination

Updated 10:39 a.m.
By Ben Pershing
High-profile Obama administration judicial nominee Goodwin Liu faces a grilling from Senate Republicans Friday in a session that both parties see as a warm-up for the coming fight to replace Justice John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court.

Liu -- an associate dean at the University of California at Berkeley law school -- is being vetted by the Senate Judiciary Committee Friday morning for a slot on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which covers nine Western states. Groups on the left strongly support him and many on the right oppose him for the same reason: Liu is an outspoken liberal whose writings have promoted the idea that interpreting the Constitution requires much more than just divining the intent of the founding fathers who wrote it.

In their interrogation of Liu, Senate Republicans are likely to test arguments they will use when President Obama nominates a successor to Stevens, who has declared his intention to step down from the high court in the coming months. Many Democrats hope Obama will name an outspoken liberal in the mold of Liu, and plan to mount a vigorous defense of the 9th Circuit nominee to demonstrate that such a candidate can clear the Senate gauntlet.

Liu himself is seen in some quarters as a potential future candidate for the Supreme Court. The son of Taiwanese immigrants, Liu was a Rhodes Scholar and Supreme Court clerk before assuming his current position at Berkeley. No Asian-American has ever served on the Supreme Court, nor are there any Asian-Americans currently serving as U.S. Circuit Court judges.

Republicans had sought to postpone Friday's hearing, with Judiciary ranking member Jeff Sessions (Ala.) complaining that Liu omitted several important facts and documents in completing his original questionnaire for the committee. Liu subsequently apologized and provided the missing information, but GOP senators still said they did not have sufficient time to review his record before the hearing.

Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) refused Sessions' request, noting that the hearing had already been postponed twice at Republicans' behest and arguing that the GOP was being needlessly partisan and using procedural complaints as cover for their substantive opposition to Liu's nomination.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who is chairing Friday's hearing and urged Obama to nominate Liu, cited Liu's personal and professional background to make the case for his confirmation in opening remarks at the hearing.

"He has an exceptional legal mind and a deep devition to excellence in public service," Feinstein said, adding that Liu has "excelled again and again" throughout his career.

Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) echoed that view, calling Liu one of "the best and the brightest" who belongs on the bench.

But Sessions raised questions about whether Liu was really qualified for the job, pointing out that Liu has "never been in court," either to argue a case as a trial attorney or decide one as a judge.

Sessions also made clear his belief that Liu's writings "represent, I think, the very vanguard of what I would call intellectual judicial activism."

Sessions said Liu and his ilk would look at the Constitution and "find rights there that have never been found before."

By Ben Pershing  |  April 16, 2010; 10:06 AM ET
Categories:  Capitol Briefing  | Tags: Goodwin Liu, John Paul Stevens, Supreme Court, United States, United States - Supreme Court, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary, University of California Berkeley  
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Comments

"No Asian-American has ever served on the Supreme Court, nor are there any Asian-Americans currently serving as U.S. Circuit Court judges."

Isn't A. Wallace Tashima still currently serving on the 9th Circuit?

Posted by: amywan | April 20, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

With what we got stuck with as Bush Supreme Court appointments, Republicans don't really have a foot to stand on in getting all spittle-mouthed over some nominee who leans liberal.

Posted by: TomCamfield | April 19, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

I too grew up a WASP in Alabama; that has no relevance to the qualifications of nominees to the court. One doesn't have to be racist to believe that Liu is a poor choice for the court. By his words and actions he has shown himself to be both far removed from the main stream and in truth, dishonest by his deliberate negligence in submitting all relevant documents. Blaming those in opposition doesn't make him more qualified; it just muddies the waters.

Posted by: Lilycat1 | April 19, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

All you left-wing kooks are saying, in essence, that you would be happy to walk into the best hospital in the world and operate on a child because you went to college. Not my child and, I hope, not anyone's. Wake up lefties, you are accepting anything Obama says or recommends as the final word. When your taxes and your children's and grandchildren's taxes go up and stay up because of Obama and his left-wing ideology, you'll understand then. Hope it's not too late to save the U.S.

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Posted by: itkonlyyou12 | April 17, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

There are enough clowns on the 9th Circus already. It's time to prevent the left from doing by judicial fiat what it cannot gain by the ballot! It's time to replace these leftist socialist progressives with their own pure ideology of subversion out of business!

Posted by: vgailitis | April 17, 2010 8:03 AM | Report abuse

doveliezer2001 | April 17, 2010 1:05 AM |

Sorry . . . that would be none other than the Grand Kleagle and Exalted Cyclops of the KKK himself, Democrat Senator Byrd of West Virginia that you must be thinking of!

Posted by: TrochilusTales | April 17, 2010 4:53 AM | Report abuse

Sorry to bring this up, but isn't Sessions a supporter of the Ku Klux Klan? I haven't heard anyone denounce Liu's nomination who isn't a relatively out-there racist.

Posted by: doveliezer2001 | April 17, 2010 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Trochilus Tales | April 16, 2010 5:59 PM

With respect, I'd like to point out two things about your comments. First, with respect to Professor Liu's lack of judicial experience, it is a glaring and indisputable fact that requiring such experience would have disqualified William Rehnquist and Earl Warren (among many others) from taking the bench in the Supreme Court.

Second, it is a glaring and indisputable fact that Senator Sessions was rejected as a nominee to the federal bench which makes it glaringly and indisputably ironic that he should be in the present position of "vetting" nominees to higher judicial positions. I understand the Senate's role in this, and Senator Session's legitimate role as part of that process, but that understanding does not make it less ironic.

Posted by: pohare1 | April 16, 2010 11:48 PM | Report abuse

So the Republicans are going to run out the questions they will eventually use against whatever Nominee Obama comes up with for Stevens seat? (Whomever Obama nominates will, of course be an ideologue, Sessions has already decreed it.)

Fine. I always felt that if I saw all the questions to the test before hand I shouldn't have much trouble answering them. When Mr. Liu treats Sessions and sons like inattentive first year pre law students, and gives them a thorough grounding in the Constitution, will THEY be up to any test HE might propose?

Like explaining the nominative absolute that begins the Second Amendment.

Go Ahead, R's, show your small minded intolerance. Trot out a few ill considered terms for Asian Americans in Fox interviews. Show the world what you are made of.

Does even one of you play chess at the level where you look at least two moves ahead?

Posted by: ceflynline | April 16, 2010 7:54 PM | Report abuse

ronjeske | April 16, 2010 6:31 PM . . . you just said, that someone (Sessions) should just "shut up and sit down."

In order to justify your position, you should at least suggest where he was incorrect in what he said.

As I previously pointed out in detail to pohare1, tell us . . . where was Senator Sessions wrong?

Or, were you just posting some "talking points" someone prepared for you to post?

You see, Senator Sessions was quite accurate in pointing out that Professor Liu is utterly unqualified for the position of judge for the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals -- or, for ANY circuit or district court, for that matter.

He has NO experience whatsoever.

Come on, ronjeske. Give us some facts supporting your position!

Posted by: TrochilusTales | April 16, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

Psssst . . . Garak | April 16, 2010 2:31 PM |

Uhhh . . . Liu never has been a judge at any level. And, Liu never has even been a litigator at any level.

All he has ever been is a lefty teacher, with quirky lefty views, at a lefty school.

So, tell us . . . how is that MORE experience than someone who was an Appeals Court judge, and who ran a federal agency?


And, KHMJr | April 16, 2010 2:07 PM |

Naturally, someone here had to quite illegitimately raise the question of race, so congratulations!

And having done so, perhaps YOU would like to be the one to explain Professor Liu's crazy views on reparations for slavery.

Good luck!

Posted by: TrochilusTales | April 16, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Sessions has a problem with anyone being appointed to the bench. The reason is simple, Sessions can't get it done for himself, having been rejected in the past. Makes him a little sensitive that some younger person is getting nominated. He should just shut up and sit down.

Posted by: ronjeske | April 16, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

pohare1 | April 16, 2010 3:41 PM, your argument is really quite silly.

It is indeed significant that Professor Liu has never been in court, either in the capacity of a judge, or as a litigator.

This nomination is to the second hignest court level in the nation!

Now that is a glaring and indisputable fact, one that is in no way diminished by attempting, as you have, to attack its intrinsic impact, by mindlessly and personally attacking the person who said it!

It would be like someone -- anyone -- questioning the bona fides of a mere teacher at a medical school, who was being hired to set the final standards for the performance of all forms of major surgery -- a person who had never performed any surgery himself, and in fact had never even had a surgical patient!

You, it seems, would personally attack the person who raised the obviously valid question.

To the contrary, and regardless of whether the questioner was a newly hired orderly, or an outgoing chief of surgery, most of us would react in the exact same way.

We'd say: "Good point!"

So, all I can say is, good thing you are not in charge of making such picks!

Posted by: TrochilusTales | April 16, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

It is an indication of the regrettable depths to which the nomination process has sunk that we take as a given that the Democrats and Republicans will "face off," and that Professor Liu will be "interrogated."

This particular case imparts a pleasant whiff of irony in that Senator Sessions, a prominently failed nominee for the federal bench himself, is again the leading voice of Republican scruples. Evidently, Senator Sessions believes that among his other faults (some yet to be discovered, undoubtedly), Professor Liu has insufficient experience in court. Of course that test could not be used effectively with Justice Sotomayor since she would have passed.

The notion that the do-nothing Republican members have had insufficient time to review Professor Liu's record is laughable, and compels one to wonder with what their time has been occupied? There are, after all, no recent accomplishments to suggest that they have been about other business on behalf of the nation and its people. The further accusation that his writings display "intellectual judicial activism" is passing strange given that conservative "activism" is arguably a hallmark of the Supreme Court's recent jurisprudence.

As is increasingly the model for Republican positions on pressing, contemporary issues facing the Senate, the starting point is a negative conclusion, here concerning Professor Liu's suitability for the bench, but the subject might equally be financial regulation or health care. The premise is always negative. From that beginning there remains only the search for the cover of a supporting rationale, with very little care for how intellectually flimsy or analytically frayed that cloth might be.

Posted by: pohare1 | April 16, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Professor Liu did not just commit an inadvertent omission or two when he failed to supply, as this article suggests, stating that he did not supply "several important documents and materials" to the Judiciary Committee with the original submission of his required questionaire.

He failed, as specifically required, to give the committee well over one hundred (117) documents, which "supplementary materials" he came forward with ONLY when directly challenged, based on Republican staff research.

The materials he had to be challenged to supply, including controversial articles he had written, ones that would have inevitably raised serious questions about his suitability for the bench.

Because of the sheer volume and scope of the missing documentation, Professor Liu either intentionally (and therefore dishonestly) failed to submit the materials, or he is hopelessly inept as a researcher, and combines that weakness with an extremely poor memory.

Either way -- dishonest or dopey -- he is utterly unqualified to be a federal judge.

In addition, the quirky Professor is an enthusiastic and open supporter of "reparations for slavery," and on extremely controverisal grounds.

He has stated, for example, that there is an absolute "moral" case for everyone being compelled to participate in the granting of reparations, even those whose forebearers never played any part whatsoever in slavery, and even including anyone (like himself) whose forebearers did not come to this country until long after slavery was officially abolished in the mid-19th century!

Just take a listen!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgR2I3mvz74

He is unqualified to be a federal judge.

Posted by: TrochilusTales | April 16, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Liberals and Dems need to fight for this nomination. The Grand Obstructionist Party has fought for their nominees and won. The GOP should leanr that they do not own the judiciary. Americans do and liberals are not the judical activists that the Grand Obstructionist Party claims. Liberal judisprudence gave us many civil liberties and procetcions from "big government" wich many conservatvies claim to love but scorn bcause they were won by liberals.

Posted by: Brainny | April 16, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Experience? Clarence Thomas was an appeals court judge for 1 year when nominated. It takes 3 to get through law school. Liu is more qualified to sit on the Supreme Court than was Thomas.

Posted by: Garak | April 16, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee
============
That's why we have a process to "repeal". (See "Prohibition"/18th Amendment) If a piece of our Constitution is out-dated and needs be removed or changed, it should be repealed and ratified, not suddenly interpreted in a different manner.

Posted by: Chuckled | April 16, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Like Sessions, I grew up as a WASP in Alabama.
I don't really believe that he has outgrown that ultraconservative mold.
Example - he wants to use belief in Jesus as a criterion (What? no Jews?, etc.).

Does anyone actually believe that the Catholic Justices on the Court are not pro-life activist?

Sessions is one of the WORST possible of Senators to be involved in examining a Supreme Court nominee. Jeeze!

Posted by: lufrank1 | April 16, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Like Sessions, I grew up as a WASP in Alabama.
I don't really believe that he has outgrown that ultraconservative mold.
Example - he wants to use belief in Jesus as a criterion (What? no Jews?, etc.).

Does anyone actually believe that the Catholic Justices on the Court are not pro-life activist?

Sessions is one of the WORST possible of Senators to be involved in examining a Supreme Court nominee. Jeeze!

Posted by: lufrank1 | April 16, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee
============
That's why we have a process to "repeal". (See "Prohibition"/18th Amendment) If a piece of our Constitution is out-dated and needs be removed or changed, it should be repealed and ratified, not suddenly interpreted in a different manner.

Posted by: Chuckled | April 16, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

I tend to believe that out judicial system is overloaded with Conservatives and would hope that President Obama can bring more balance to the Bench at all levels.

Regardless, let's let the Republicans attack the Asian as much as possible. There is an election near the end of the year and the Republican's Anti-Asian position will be compatible with their Anti-Black, Anti-Hispanic positions.

Posted by: KHMJr | April 16, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I tend to believe that out judicial system is overloaded with Conservatives and would hope that President Obama can bring more balance to the Bench at all levels.

Regardless, let's let the Republicans attack the Asian as much as possible. There is an election near the end of the year and the Republican's Anti-Asian position will be compatible with their Anti-Black, Anti-Hispanic positions.

Posted by: KHMJr | April 16, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I tend to believe that out judicial system is overloaded with Conservatives and would hope that President Obama can bring more balance to the Bench at all levels.

Regardless, let's let the Republicans attack the Asian as much as possible. There is an election near the end of the year and the Republican's Anti-Asian position will be compatible with their Anti-Black, Anti-Hispanic positions.

Posted by: KHMJr | April 16, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee
=========================================
RU that dogmatic to think that is what we are talking about in referring to upholding the constitution of the US?

Ms. Feinstein said it best when she referred to the law to represent ALL diverse citizens of this country. NOT to freeze it in time BUT to make interpretations based on how to equally relate the law to ALL AMERICANS, despite their party, race, gender, age, religion, etc. AND it should not be interpreted to favor one segment of society over another. And this is what a progressive and organic interpreter of the Constitution would enable him or her to do and that is what is dangerous and divisive...

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee
=========================================
RU that dogmatic to think that is what we are talking about in referring to upholding the constitution of the US?

Ms. Feinstein said it best when she referred to the law to represent ALL diverse citizens of this country. NOT to freeze it in time BUT to make interpretations based on how to equally relate the law to ALL AMERICANS, despite their party, race, gender, age, religion, etc. AND it should not be interpreted to favor one segment of society over another. And this is what a progressive and organic interpreter of the Constitution would enable him or her to do and that is what is dangerous and divisive...

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee
=========================================
RU that dogmatic to think that is what we are talking about in referring to upholding the constitution of the US?

Ms. Feinstein said it best when she referred to the law to represent ALL diverse citizens of this country. NOT to freeze it in time BUT to make interpretations based on how to equally relate the law to ALL AMERICANS, despite their party, race, gender, age, religion, etc. AND it should not be interpreted to favor one segment of society over another. And this is what a progressive and organic interpreter of the Constitution would enable him or her to do and that is what is dangerous and divisive...

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee
=========================================
RU that dogmatic to think that is what we are talking about in referring to upholding the constitution of the US?

Ms. Feinstein said it best when the referred to the law to represent ALL diverse citizens of this country. NOT to freeze it in time BUT to make interpretations based on how to equally relate the law to ALL AMERICANS, despite their party, race, gender, age, religion, etc. AND it should not be interpreted to favor one segment of society over another. And this is what a progressive and organic interpreter of the Constitution would enable him or her to do and that is what is dangerous and divisive...

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

The new but aging argument that Federal Court judges must have had actual litigation or judicial experience. A sizeable number of Supreme Court justice have had no prior legal experience and perhaps its time for the Supreme Court to return to the Founding Father's tradition of seeking out those individuals who have wisdom, compassion, and fairness in interpreting the Constitution of the United States.

Posted by: TabLUnoLCSWfromUtah | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

The new but aging argument that Federal Court judges must have had actual litigation or judicial experience. A sizeable number of Supreme Court justice have had no prior legal experience and perhaps its time for the Supreme Court to return to the Founding Father's tradition of seeking out those individuals who have wisdom, compassion, and fairness in interpreting the Constitution of the United States.

Posted by: TabLUnoLCSWfromUtah | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

'Sessions said Liu and his ilk would look at the Constitution and "find rights there that have never been found before."'

So what's the problem there? Why should judicial lawmakers such as Alito, Roberts, Scalia, Thomas and their "ilk" have all the fun?

Posted by: JC505 | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

He has no experience.

Posted by: sandpebbles | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

The new but aging argument that Federal Court judges must have had actual litigation or judicial experience. A sizeable number of Supreme Court justice have had no prior legal experience and perhaps its time for the Supreme Court to return to the Founding Father's tradition of seeking out those individuals who have wisdom, compassion, and fairness in interpreting the Constitution of the United States.

Posted by: TabLUnoLCSWfromUtah | April 16, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that Senator Sessions has so much to say; the "former" segregationist who grills potential judges like Sotomayor on possible racism. In a party of dixiecrats he really takes the cake.
And for American17: Obama is hardly an ideologue. All the ideologues listen in to the overweight, drug addicted draft dodger's radio program and don't have a clue as to the difference between a nazi, socialist and communist - only know that Obama is one of these. Fear. Hate. Ignorance. TEA.

Posted by: roscym1 | April 16, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Republicans have accumulated numerous Liu quotes in writings and speeches that, they contend, makes him an activist. One of them cited: "The question ... is not how the Constitution would have been applied at the founding, but rather how it should be applied today ... in light of changing needs, conditions and understandings of our society."

__________

yeah as we all know the RETHUG party would like us to pretend that NOTHING has changed in the past 200 years.. hence Gov McDonnell saying slavery was not important factor in the civil war.

it is important to INTERPRET the CONSTITUTION for the TIMES we live in NOT WHAT YOU "FEEL" the founders intended.

Posted by: racerdoc | April 16, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

'Sessions said Liu and his ilk would look at the Constitution and "find rights there that have never been found before."'

So what's the problem there? Why should judicial lawmakers such as Alito, Roberts, Scalia, Thomas and their "ilk" have all the fun?

Posted by: JC505 | April 16, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Sessions is a complete idiot. Has he ever heard of the Ninth Amendment? That rights have "never been found before" doesn't mean they don't exist.

"The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

The Constitution is a living document. It was written in a pre-industrial age and it lays out fundamental principles and procedures of governance. But it wasn't meant to freeze America in the 18th century.

Posted by: ElrodinTennessee | April 16, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Activists?
No court has been more Activist than the Roberts 5.. disregarding precedent, using small technical matters to make sweeping judgements,insisting on state rights only when they agree..

the supreme court has never been so partisan and it's the Republicans who took the US there.

Posted by: newagent99 | April 16, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Diane Feinstein tried to give an opportunity for Professor Liu to defend or back-track on his theoretical positions regarding the constitutionality of affirmative action and constitutionality of welfare rights. Liu defends his previous pro stance by stating simply that the "final word begins with the legislature".

Yes, BUT this is where the danger and the power lies. The LEGISLATURE, if smart and clever enough, will manipulate the ambiguity of the precedents ESTABLISHED in judicial rulings to LEGISLATE laws that will have UNPRECEDENTED and dangerous results for MANY INDIVIDUAL AMERICANS...

This is what the health care mandate proposed by Obama has managed to do. SO, Liu is basically saying that his rulings will uphold the legislative rulings OVER the law of the land based on the Constitution of this land!

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

In Liu's world, the Constitution means whatever he wants it to mean. Keep this fellow away.
*****************************************************************************************************
That sounds like the SCOTUS somehow finding in the Constitution, the right of an entity that isn't even human, but is instead a legal construct called a corporation, having a "right to freedom of speech."

Posted by: sonny2 | April 16, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

As an Asian American myself, political beliefs aside, I am quite proud of Liu and his career accomplishment given his background. But I do find it quite troubling, if true, that he has never participated in any real life trials as an attorney or a judge.

Posted by: Chuckled | April 16, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

The Democrat Judiciary Committee Chairman, Leahy, read off a three person list of past GOP nominees who ALSO did NOT have the judicial experience to qualify for court nominations but were confirmed.

Excuse, me, Chairman Leahy, PAST WRONGS DO NOT MAKE A RIGHT BY CONTINUING TO MAKE THE SAME MISTAKES TO JUSTIFY IT!
This nominee, Liu, is JUST TOO PROGRESSIVE. READ all his papers!

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Professor Liu is VERY smart, he has a VERY compelling life story and he is clearly a very thoughtful person. He would make a GREAT professor at ANY law school. BUT, he is CLEARY NOT qualified to be an appellate judge. WHY?

Same reason why I would NEVER vote again like Obama who has NO concrete experience having RUN a government. Obama is an ideologue but his ideas can't be applied in real life but only in theory. He fails to understand this because he has never been a Governor nor an owner of a private corporation. This has nothing to do with his race, age, gender, religious belief BUT about qualification.

Professor Liu is being nominated to the highest court in a state to make decisions regarding his "progressive interpretation" of the Constitution and this WILL become a precedent. That is quite a powerful and threatening prospect. We need someone who has the theoretical knowledge AND practical applications of that knowledge in real-life setting. This nominee NEVER served as a judge. He is therefore NOT qualified. PERIOD.

Posted by: american17 | April 16, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

First, this is only a high profile nomination because of the continuing GOP complaing and delaying tactics, if not for these most peope would not even know there was a nomination occurring.

Also, I believe the article should read tha Leahy refused to delay the hearing, again, because the GOP is using delaying tactics as cover since they have NO substantive rational for opposing the nomination beyond disagreement with some of the nominee's legal views. But, the rules are not written such that a nominee's legal positions must pass GOP muster. Is Liu qualified on other grounds? Yes. The GOP has consistently argued their nominees(Roberts, Alito, etc) should be evaluated based on qulifications not legal positions, now they've changed their own proffessed standards. Why? Oh yeah, it's no longer their nominees. Another GOP recourse to self-serving double standards. So now they will make Liu a guinea pig for the upcoming Supreme Court nominee, gotta find out what politically motivated questioning activities appear effective with the electorate for future reference. Grandstanding upon unfounded principles.

Posted by: jmdziuban1 | April 16, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

First, this is only a high profile nomination because of the continuing GOP complaing and delaying tactics, if not for these most peope would not even know there was a nomination occurring.

Also, I believe the article should read tha Leahy refused to delay the hearing, again, because the GOP is using delaying tactics as cover since they have NO substantive rational for opposing the nomination beyond disagreement with some of the nominee's legal views. But, the rules are not written such that a nominee's legal positions must pass GOP muster. Is Liu qualified on other grounds? Yes. The GOP has consistently argued their nominees(Roberts, Alito, etc) should be evaluated based on qulifications not legal positions, now they've changed their own proffessed standards. Why? Oh yeah, it's no longer their nominees. Another GOP recourse to self-serving double standards. So now they will make Liu a guinea pig for the upcoming Supreme Court nominee, gotta find out what politically motivated questioning activities appear effective with the electorate for future reference. Grandstanding upon unfounded principles.

Posted by: jmdziuban1 | April 16, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

In Liu's world, the Constitution should be interpreted in a way that's relevant to today's world while preserving its basic principles. The framers intended for it to be flexible in that way.

Posted by: lolchae | April 16, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Obama would be better off nominating Lucy Liu.

Posted by: hofbrauhausde | April 16, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

In Liu's world, the Constitution means whatever he wants it to mean. Keep this fellow away.

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