Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

There was a pretty good article in today's WashPo that makes a good case for why Stevens's could very well become the next swing-vote.

Stevens's remarkable staying power has been good for liberals. At a time of conservative ascendancy on the court, he anchors a four-justice center-left bloc that would probably shrink to three if President Bush could appoint his successor. After the confirmation of Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. to replace Sandra Day O'Connor, the liberal radio network Air America began playing "Hang On Stevens," a parody of the 1960s hit "Hang On Sloopy." The song implores: "Just wait until Bush leaves before you resign."
(You can listen to "Hang on Stevens" here if you haven't done so already.)

Stevens's has a varied voting record, sometimes voting against, say, affirmative action then later, voting in support of it. He has consistently upheld the ban on capital punishment for minors and persons with mental disabilities. You know Bush doesn't like him because Stevens's voted against Mr. Bush in the 2000 decision that gave him the presidency over Mr. Gore. (Come to think of it, this is probably why Stevens's wasn't picked to be Chief Justice.)

And did you know Stevens's dissented 21 times in the 2004-2005 term, making him the courts most frequent dissenter?

I'm not much of a prayin' woman, but I will be prayin' that Stevens's decides to hang out while Bush ruins our country and retire when a Democratic president takes over. I'm also hoping he kicks that "frequent dissenter" label into overdrive when they decide on the partial birth abortion case later this year.