Here Come the Catholic Cheerleaders

October 2005

When President Bush announced the nomination of John G. Roberts for the Supreme Court on July 19, the next day's newspapers gave us everything we needed to know about Roberts. As we noted in our New Oxford Note (Sept., pp. 15-16, 18): "When Roberts was asked by the Senate Judiciary Committee for his appointment to the Court of Appeals on April 30, 2003, about his views on Roe, he said: 'Roe vs. Wade is an interpretation of the Court's prior precedents. You can read the opinion beginning not just with Griswold, which is the case everybody begins with, but going even further back in other areas involving the right to privacy.... And what the Court explained in that case was the basis for the recognition of that right [to privacy].... Roe vs. Wade is the settled law of the land.... There's nothing in my personal views that would prevent me from fully and faithfully applying that precedent.'"

We also noted: "On the night Roberts was appointed by Bush (July 19), MSNBC ran a banner saying, 'ROBERTS: OVERTURN ROE V. WADE.' White House aide Steve Schmidt called MSNBC to complain. A correction followed the next evening (July 20): 'According to the White House, Judge Roberts does not oppose Roe v. Wade.'"

We noted in that New Oxford Note that neoconservative Fr. Frank Pavone was calling Roberts "prolife." And more Catholic cheerleaders have joined in supporting Roberts (and this is written before Roberts has gone before the Senate Judiciary Committee).

The Knights of Columbus, headed by Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson (a functionary in the Reagan White House), got a Resolution passed at the 123rd annual convention of the Knights on August 4: "NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Knights of Columbus urges the Senate Judiciary Committee to conduct prompt, fair and expeditious hearings on the nomination of John G. Roberts to the United States Supreme Court and urges the full Senate to consider his nomination without delay or filibuster...." Given that Roberts supports Roe, one wonders why the Resolution didn't read: "The Knights of Columbus urges the Senate to filibuster Roberts." But how foolish of us to think that, for Supreme Knight Anderson is a Reagan loyalist and a Republican cheerleader.


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New Oxford Notes: October 2005

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