Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Leahy Shocker (really): Yes to Roberts

This, in contrast to yesterday's news, actually is surprising:
The senior Democrat on the Judiciary Committee announced Wednesday he will vote to confirm John Roberts for chief justice of the United States after leading senators met with President Bush to discuss candidates for a second high court vacancy.

The announcement by veteran Sen. Patrick Leahy came amid virtually unprecedented executive-legislative branch jockeying over not one, but two high court openings, the seats left vacant by the death of Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist and the retirement of Associate Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.

I wonder if he struck some sort of deal with Bush on who the next nominee will be, as the next paragraph is very interesting:
Leahy’s decision, made public shortly after he and three other leading senators met privately with Bush at the White House to discuss candidates for O’Connor’s place on the bench, came on the eve of the Judiciary panel’s vote on whether to favorably recommend Roberts’ confirmation to the full Senate.

There will probably be a lot of speculation as to who the other nominee will be, but Leahy must have been pretty content with the choices, or he would probably be putting up more of a stink now, as I mentioned earlier today Manuel Miranda wrote about in today's Wall Street Journal.

We'll have to wait and see, but this looks to be a telling, and possibly bad, sign. Hopefully, the truth is that Leahy understands Roberts is a fair, smart, and honest judge; but only time will tell.

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