Friday, December 23, 2005

Alito's Paper Trail

The 1985 memo that SCOTUS nominee Samuel Alito wrote regarding abortion has been released to the public by the National Archives today:
WASHINGTON - Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito wrote in a June 1985 memo that the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling legalizing abortion should be overturned, a finding certain to enliven January's confirmation hearings. In a recommendation to the solicitor general on filing a friend-of- court brief, Alito said that the government "should make clear that we disagree with Roe v. Wade and would welcome the opportunity to brief the issue of whether, and if so to what extent, that decision should be overruled."

This story is nothing new, it broke in early November, when the Washington Times said this:
Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr., President Bush's Supreme Court nominee, wrote that "the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion" in a 1985 document obtained by The Washington Times.

"I personally believe very strongly" in this legal position, Mr. Alito wrote on his application to become deputy assistant to Attorney General Edwin I. Meese III.

Old news or not, the documents being made public change the issue just a little bit. Certainly more people know about the document than before, and certainly it will be an issue raised during the confirmation hearings.

Nonetheless, it is a memo from 1985, and Alito's views might have changed. This can still be encouraging news for the Republican base, but the Dems and the left cannot simply accept Alito's position on the issue based on a 20-year-old document. We'll see how this plays out in the hearings.

UPDATE:

Via Michelle Malkin:
The Associated Press is reporting that "Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito defended the right of government officials to order domestic wiretaps when he worked for the Reagan Justice Department."

Go read Mrs. Malkin's post on the report, she has some background and a few helpful links as well.