Early Takes on Samuel Alito
If the RNC’s quote list is any indication, the nomination of Samuel Alito is going over pretty well with conservatives–and at least a few non-Republican media pundits.
ABC’s George Stephanopoulos: “[Samuel Alito] Has Got The Background Qualifications And Temperament Of John Roberts.” (ABC’s “Good Morning America,” 10/31/05)
* Stephanopoulos: “[Samuel Alito] Won’t Provide A Big Target For The Democrats.” (ABC’s “Good Morning America,” 10/31/05)
Fox News’ Bill Kristol: “I Think He Is Really High Quality…An Awfully Impressive Man. (Fox News, “Fox And Friends,” 10/31/05)
ABC’s Jessica Yellin: “Samuel Alito Is A Federal Judge In New Jersey With Established Conservative Credentials, He Has Well-Known Views On Constitutional Issues And Unquestioned Intellectual Heft.” (ABC’s “Good Morning America,” 10/31/05)
CBS’ Gloria Borger: “There Is No Doubt, Julie, That This Man Is Very Qualified. People Consider Him A Brilliant Jurist, And So You Can’t Argue With Qualifications.” (CBS’ “The Early Show,” 10/31/05)
CNN’s Bill Schneider: “On Those Two Grounds, Temperament And Credentials, He Seems Like A Strong Pick.” (CNN’s “American Morning,” 10/31/05)
CNN’s Jeff Toobin: “[Alito Has] A Remarkable Level Of Experience. This Is Very Much Like John Roberts, Sort Of Central Casting Background For A Supreme Court Nominee.” (CNN’s “American Morning,” 10/31/05)
* Toobin: “[J]udge Alito Has Remarkable, Excellent Qualifications To Be On Supreme Court.” (CNN’s “American Morning,” 10/31/05)
* Toobin: “Alito Is Supposed To Be A Very Nice Guy, Relaxed, Laid Back, Friendly, Charming.” (CNN’s “American Morning,” 10/31/05)
Senator John McCain (R-AZ): “[Judge Alito] Has A Very Good Temperament. … He’s Very Smart, And Has Impressed A Lot Of People. The President Said He Was Going To Appoint Somebody Who Is Conservative, And That’s The Way He Campaigned, And That’s What We Have Here. I Think He’s Very Highly Regarded.” (MSNBC’s “Imus In The Morning,” 10/31/05)
ABC’s Terry Moran: “[T]his Is A Man With Deep Experience In These [Judicial] Issues …” (ABC’s “Good Morning America,” 10/31/05)
No word on why all these people speak in title case.
Having McCain and the likes of Borger and Toobin praise Alito confirms my initial impression that he’ll sail through after a relatively mild fight in the Senate. Unlike Miers, there is simply no question that he is qualified in terms of intellect, training, and experience. And, while he’s certainly more conservative than Sandra Day O’Connor–and probably John Roberts–there’s little indication that he is a rabid ideologue who simply invokes whatever legal rationale is convenient to achieve his policy outcomes. Inded, he has ruled against his own preferences–and the GOP–on numerous big cases.
So far, this looks like a home run pick.