Monday, March 24, 2008

Justice Sunstein dissents

Ubiquitous liberal legal scholar Cass Sunstein takes a shot at Clarence Thomas:
"Mr. Constitution" votes, too much of the time, in a way that fits with the twenty-first century views of the conservative wing of the Republican Party. My own empirical studies, with Thomas Miles of the University of Chicago, show that in administrative law cases, Thomas is the most partisan member of the Court, with Justice Stevens a close second.
(Via Memeorandum.) Hmmm. So Justice Thomas (a) considers himself a strict constructionist and (b) votes with "the conservative wing of the Republican Party." Why does Sunstein see this as some sort of conflict? Isn't fealty to the Constitution a fundamental principle for conservative Republicans? And who is Sunstein -- a predictably loyal Democrat -- to talk about being "partisan"?

My annoyance with Sunstein goes back to the Monica Lewinsky scandal, when the University of Chicago law professor made a pest of himself by arguing that Bill Clinton's perjury and obstruction of justice didn't qualify as "high crimes and misdemeanors."

Over the past decade, Sunstein has continued to pop up like Arnold Horshack -- "Ooh! Ooh! Mr. Kotter!" -- every time there is any legal/political imbroglio that might possibly merit a New York Times op-ed column. The editors of The New Republic probably gave Sunstein a blogging gig just to handle the overflow.

Note to Obama and Hillary: If you get elected, please appoint Sunstein to the next opening on the Supreme Court. Maybe that will keep him busy.

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