July 29, 2005
There will be much jockeying for position over the John Roberts Supreme Court nomination.
In fact, it has already begun.
In addition to democrats asking for thousands of documents and never being satisfied they have enough, senator Ted Kennedy has chimed in, saying he expects judge Roberts to "answer fully" any questions about controversial issues that could come before the court in the future.
But, during the 1967 confirmation debate over Thurgood Marhsall's nomination, Kennedy had a different position.
Then, he said, "we have to respect that any nominee to the supreme court would have to defer comments on any matters which are either before the court or very likely to be before the court. This has been a procedure that has been followed in the past and is one which I think is based upon sound legal precedent."
So, which is it?
The answer is that when a liberal democrat is the nominee, liberal democrat senators already know what he thinks and see no need to pin him down.
But if it's a conservative, Kennedy and company will use any tactic to keep him off the bench.
I'm Cal Thomas in Washington.
Cal Thomas is a nationally syndicated columnist based in Washington, D.C. Watch his television show, After Hours with Cal Thomas, on the Fox News Channel, Saturdays at 11 p.m. Eastern Time.