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​ 🏛️ ​Official Supreme Court nomination thread - Amy Coney Barrett


Sinn Fein

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1 hour ago, Summer Wheat said:

A little puzzled at why ACB being Catholic is an issue. 

Joe Biden is Catholic and he might be the next POTUS.  Nancy Pelosi is Catholic, AOC is Catholic, Sonia Sotomayor is Catholic. Lots of Catholics in politics.

Catholics serving on the John Roberts Supreme Court(s):

John Roberts

Antonin Scalia

Anthony Kennedy

Clarence Thomas

Samuel Alito

Sonia Sotomayor

Brett Kavanaugh

-plus-

Neil Gorsuch (raised Catholic and matriculated at a Jesuit high school)

Staunch conservatives who universally laud the John Roberts Supreme Court(s): >crickets<

The issue is neither People of Praise or her Catholicism, it's the circumstances surrounding her nomination.

They made Kavanaugh the devil incarnate for some high school party antics.  Frankly, if this is all they are able to conjure up on her, they should make her chief justice. lol

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5 minutes ago, Psychopav said:

The charismatic movement in the Catholic Church is fairly widespread.  It's not a majority or anything but I venture to guess that every diocese has charismatic groups, Life in the Spirit seminars, healing masses, etc.  Not a big deal imo, or fringe.

This group extends beyond a parish or diocese.  Its not Knights of Columbus.

The notion of women deferring to their husbands is a bit of a fringe movement, imo.

 

But, it remains to see how much influence she has over the group, or the group have over her.  Absent that, then I don't think its a big deal.

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22 hours ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

There's an obvious (to me) difference between the following two questions:

1. Does capital punishment run afoul of the Eighth Amendment under a proper constitutional analysis?

2. Now that this defendant has been convicted by the jury, it is up to me to finally determine the appropriate sentence after weighing the various mitigating and aggravating circumstances -- should it be death or something else?

I don't know whether the second situation was the intended context for ACB's quotation above (and I'm aware it's now mooted by Hurst). But it is quite easy for me to imagine being able to put aside my personal views and decide issue #1 fairly while being unable to do so with issue #2.

I'm curious as to what circumstance you would be deciding #1 without considering whether a particular defendant will be put to death.

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Just now, Sinn Fein said:

This group extends beyond a parish or diocese.  Its not Knights of Columbus.

The notion of women deferring to their husbands is a bit of a fringe movement, imo.

 

But, it remains to see how much influence she has over the group, or the group have over her.  Absent that, then I don't think its a big deal.

Or they are called to obey their husbands by Paul, and this teaching is consistent with every mainline protestant as well as Catholic teaching for the entire 20th century.  Sounds like sensationalistic pot-stirring to even report it as an issue, from where I stand.

The same passage calls for husbands to love their wives as Christ loves the Church (you may recall he was tortured and killed for the Church).  Most commentaries on the obedience aspect go on to cover the sacrificial aspect of the passage as well.  Nothing new or fringe here, other than the half-truth way it's reported, I expect.  I'd suggest that because of this universal teaching on this particular subject, the burden of proof is on the reporter to show how this is any different from how this is addressed on any given Sunday in any typical Christian church.

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10 minutes ago, Psychopav said:

Or they are called to obey their husbands by Paul, and this teaching is consistent with every mainline protestant as well as Catholic teaching for the entire 20th century.  Sounds like sensationalistic pot-stirring to even report it as an issue, from where I stand.

The same passage calls for husbands to love their wives as Christ loves the Church (you may recall he was tortured and killed for the Church).  Most commentaries on the obedience aspect go on to cover the sacrificial aspect of the passage as well.  Nothing new or fringe here, other than the half-truth way it's reported, I expect.  I'd suggest that because of this universal teaching on this particular subject, the burden of proof is on the reporter to show how this is any different from how this is addressed on any given Sunday in any typical Christian church.

Fortunately, ex-members did some of this work for them by previously detailing in exposes the alleged subjugation of women within that group.  

Like this book detailing one member's description of what she considers to have been escaping from a cult.
Or like this book from a Notre Dame philosophy professor who was part of the group.

Which are discussed in this article.

Which also details the life of some single women inside this religious institution:
 

Quote

 

The group’s magazine also offers insights into the group’s views on marriage, community and members’ finances. A 2007 issue discusses how the 17 single women who live together in a household, called the Sisterhood, had their paychecks direct deposited into a single bank account. One member said she had “no idea” what the amount of her paycheck was.

The pooled money was managed by one woman, who budgeted for everyone’s clothing and other expenses, including $36 weekly per person for food and basics like toilet paper. All women were expected to give 10% of their pay to People of Praise, another 1% to the South Bend branch and additional tithes to their churches.

 

There's also some discussion in the article of the covenant that's expected to be signed swearing to act always in accordance with the teachings of the church leaders.

Edited by Henry Ford
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1 minute ago, Henry Ford said:

Fortunately, ex-members did some of this work for them by previously detailing in exposes the alleged subjugation of women within that group.  

Like this book detailing one member's description of what she considers to have been escaping from a cult.

Which is discussed in this article.

Which also details the life of some single women inside this religious institution:
 

There's also some discussion in the article of the covenant that's expected to be signed swearing to act always in accordance with the teachings of the church leaders.

We should certainly rush through this vetting process.

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10 minutes ago, Psychopav said:

The charismatic movement in the Catholic Church is fairly widespread.  It's not a majority or anything but I venture to guess that every diocese has charismatic groups, Life in the Spirit seminars, healing masses, etc.  Not a big deal imo, or fringe.

Never heard of it before Monday. Was wondering why there was a big uproar over "attacking" her because she is Catholic. I didn't actually see any attacks. But it makes a bit more sense now. The proactive defense of attacking her Catholicism was actually put out there to thwart the fact that she's part of this obscure group that has 1,700 members worldwide and teaches that "women are encouraged to provide food and childcare and run an effective household".

People of Praise Wiki site

I'm going to leave it at that. I am Catholic, but not religious, have never heard of them before, and some of their ideas do seem a bit misogynistic IMO. But I'm not a religious expert so I'll just bow out here. 

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10 minutes ago, Psychopav said:

Or they are called to obey their husbands by Paul, and this teaching is consistent with every mainline protestant as well as Catholic teaching for the entire 20th century.  Sounds like sensationalistic pot-stirring to even report it as an issue, from where I stand.

The same passage calls for husbands to love their wives as Christ loves the Church (you may recall he was tortured and killed for the Church).  Most commentaries on the obedience aspect go on to cover the sacrificial aspect of the passage as well.  Nothing new or fringe here, other than the half-truth way it's reported, I expect.  I'd suggest that because of this universal teaching on this particular subject, the burden of proof is on the reporter to show how this is any different from how this is addressed on any given Sunday in any typical Christian church.

So when it is time to decide a case does she use her knowledge of the law and make her best judgment even if that means disobeying her husband?  I don't think this was in doubt for any prior nominations that were women.  I don't think it should be in doubt for Barrett either except what you wrote suggests otherwise.

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1 minute ago, Grace Under Pressure said:

Never heard of it before Monday. Was wondering why there was a big uproar over "attacking" her because she is Catholic. I didn't actually see any attacks. But it makes a bit more sense now. The proactive defense of attacking her Catholicism was actually put out there to thwart the fact that she's part of this obscure group that has 1,700 members worldwide and teaches that "women are encouraged to provide food and childcare and run an effective household".

People of Praise Wiki site

I'm going to leave it at that. I am Catholic, but not religious, have never heard of them before, and some of their ideas do seem a bit misogynistic IMO. But I'm not a religious expert so I'll just bow out here. 

And for my part, I have not heard of the specific group "People of Praise", just speaking of the charismatic renewal in general.  I need to look into the links that Henry Ford provided above to learn more about this group.

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2 minutes ago, Bottomfeeder Sports said:

So when it is time to decide a case does she use her knowledge of the law and make her best judgment even if that means disobeying her husband?  I don't think this was in doubt for any prior nominations that were women.  I don't think it should be in doubt for Barrett either except what you wrote suggests otherwise.

Why would her husband have any input whatsoever in her judgments as a federal judge?

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1 minute ago, Psychopav said:

Why would her husband have any input whatsoever in her judgments as a federal judge?

Did you not just write that "they [wives] are called to obey their husbands"?  If her husband chooses to have input in a case is she to disobey him?   Would she disobey him? Would her job come before her faith?   These should be disrespectful questions to ask her, but when you start from position that she should obey her husband the can of worms is opened.

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5 minutes ago, Sinn Fein said:

In addition - the group have pretty strong feelings on same-sex marriage, and homosexuality.  So, I think her views on those subject should be explored - can she separate her religious beliefs from the legal analysis?

Yeah, but that just makes her like Scalia. 

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3 minutes ago, Bottomfeeder Sports said:

Did you not just write that "they [wives] are called to obey their husbands"?  If her husband chooses to have input in a case is she to disobey him?   Would she disobey him? Would her job come before her faith?   These should be disrespectful questions to ask her, but when you start from position that she should obey her husband the can of worms is opened.

But that just makes her like Scalia.

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Case closed. Move along.

But when asked by then-Sen. Orrin Hatch in her 2017 confirmation hearings how she would respond to Democrats’ concerns about the impact of her faith on her judicial decisions, she replied: “Senator, I see no conflict between having a sincerely held faith and duties as a judge.”

And were I confirmed as a judge, I would decide cases according to the rule of law from beginning to end,” she continued.

“In the rare circumstance that might ever arise – I can’t imagine one sitting here now – where I felt that I had some conscientious objection to the law, I would recuse,” she told Senator Hatch and his colleagues. “I would never impose my own personal convictions upon the law.”

 

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Just now, Stoneworker said:

Case closed. Move along.

But when asked by then-Sen. Orrin Hatch in her 2017 confirmation hearings how she would respond to Democrats’ concerns about the impact of her faith on her judicial decisions, she replied: “Senator, I see no conflict between having a sincerely held faith and duties as a judge.”

And were I confirmed as a judge, I would decide cases according to the rule of law from beginning to end,” she continued.

“In the rare circumstance that might ever arise – I can’t imagine one sitting here now – where I felt that I had some conscientious objection to the law, I would recuse,” she told Senator Hatch and his colleagues. “I would never impose my own personal convictions upon the law.”

 

oh.  Ok then.  As long as she says so.

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1 hour ago, The Z Machine said:

I'ma ask my buddy whose family was in it back in the day.

Here's what buddy's wrote about People of Praise:

"My family left when I was like 4 so I don’t remember it, but I’ve heard enough to know it’s homophobic, it funnels money and power to the leaders, very misogynistic, and ####ed up the childhoods for a lot of kids from my town, especially gay kids."

Here's what a childhood friend of his wrote about People of Praise and ACB.  As you can read, this woman has a very close connection with People of Praise.

"In my opinion & from my personal experience of being raised in this cult-ish group (The People of Praise), Amy Coney Barrett is absolutely the wrong person to sit on the Supreme Court. She cannot be trusted to make rational decisions that will greatly affect Americans. She will always have the Lord, Jesus Christ & the "Heads" of the community on her right shoulder governing how she will vote.

From what I understand, her husband could actually say 11no11 or "yes" to Amy accepting the nomination, after prayer and after consulting his head ... and up the chain of heads of heads. Amy Coney Barrett in a commencement speech to Notre Dame law students: "If you can keep in mind that your fundamental purpose in life is not to be a lawyer, but to know, love and serve God, you truly will be a different kind of lawyer."

I was raised in the PoP (People of Praise), I attended Trinity School, and had to sit through talks on what was expected of me as a female in my community and my family was kicked out when I was in 8th grade because our family no longer conformed to the strict rules of the "heads". The majority of the people who claimed to love me & support me & my family turned their backs on us. We were truly shunned and made to feel less than. I had to unlearn a lot of confusing messages taught to me from this community, including, but not limited to, the fact that women should be subservient to men, that being gay will automatically land you in an actual fiery hell, and had to learn as an adult that people actually can stick with you and love you through hard times. There has been a lot of discussions about this amongst my friends & family this week if the PoP could be considered a cult or not & if Margaret Atwood indeed used the PoP as inspiration for The Handmaid's Tale.

I can say this from my experience, the PoP definitely holds its members in a constant state of brainwash, Amy Coney Barrett chose, as an adult, to be a part of this group and the strong Dogma that is a part of her very being will not be able to separate church and state.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein to Amy: "I think in your case, professor ... the dogma lives loudly within you, and that is of concern."

I canNOT believe that she, of all people, could be sitting in Ruth Bader Ginsberg's seat on the Supreme Court .... RBG, who changed the world for women! Amy will take us so far back in time. It is blowing my mind that this is happening."

Edited by The Z Machine
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If they really want to get to the bottom of whether we should be concerned, they should ask her questions pertaining to obedience and loyalty.  The "weird" part about all this is that this People of Praise group is NOT a Catholic group, yet she is a Catholic who is also a member.  How do you practice Catholicism yet also enter into this "covenant" with this nondenominational group?  Questions that get to divided loyalties, obedience to specific teachings and practices, and how and why the PoP exists independent of any church authority may yield answers that paint her as mainstream or kook.

If I were to counsel nonbelievers, I'd suggest you pay attention to these things, not get hung up on wives obey your husbands and other standard issue Christian teachings taken out of context, but look to trusted people of faith to discern whether she's crazy or just dedicated.

Based on things others have written about her experiences in the legal field, it sounds like she is able to pretty well differentiate personal creed and the role of a justice in interpreting law.  Addressing questions pertaining to the nuance in her faith practice would help clarify that impression.

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11 minutes ago, Psychopav said:

Based on things others have written about her experiences in the legal field, it sounds like she is able to pretty well differentiate personal creed and the role of a justice in interpreting law.  Addressing questions pertaining to the nuance in her faith practice would help clarify that impression.

Isn't one of the issues with ACB is her lack of rulings from the federal bench?  Sure, she's written law review articles, but in order to form an opinion on whether her religious practices make their way into her rulings, we need to look at the rulings themselves.

Can any legal scholars comment on this?

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2 hours ago, Henry Ford said:
On 9/28/2020 at 3:11 PM, Maurile Tremblay said:

There's an obvious (to me) difference between the following two questions:

1. Does capital punishment run afoul of the Eighth Amendment under a proper constitutional analysis?

2. Now that this defendant has been convicted by the jury, it is up to me to finally determine the appropriate sentence after weighing the various mitigating and aggravating circumstances -- should it be death or something else?

I don't know whether the second situation was the intended context for ACB's quotation above (and I'm aware it's now mooted by Hurst). But it is quite easy for me to imagine being able to put aside my personal views and decide issue #1 fairly while being unable to do so with issue #2.

I'm curious as to what circumstance you would be deciding #1 without considering whether a particular defendant will be put to death.

None. The issue relevant to recusal isn't "whether a particular defendant will be put to death." The issue is whether I can be impartial. Do you not believe that #1 and #2 can be rather different in that regard?

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3 hours ago, Sinn Fein said:

This group extends beyond a parish or diocese.  Its not Knights of Columbus.

The notion of women deferring to their husbands is a bit of a fringe movement, imo.

This really isn't fringe at all - but then again, it's not even really followed.  I've heard this phrase a million times in my life and very seldom does it play out the way people think.  I know very little about this group she belongs to but I would feel completely comfortable that the bolded won't impact her decision-making but I also have no issue with it at least being asked.  There's a reason we vet these folks.

 

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1 hour ago, AAABatteries said:

This really isn't fringe at all - but then again, it's not even really followed.  I've heard this phrase a million times in my life and very seldom does it play out the way people think.  I know very little about this group she belongs to but I would feel completely comfortable that the bolded won't impact her decision-making but I also have no issue with it at least being asked.  There's a reason we vet these folks.

 

The notion of women deferring to their husbands is most certainly a fringe movement these days

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19 hours ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

None. The issue relevant to recusal isn't "whether a particular defendant will be put to death." The issue is whether I can be impartial. Do you not believe that #1 and #2 can be rather different in that regard?

Let me elaborate on this a bit.

I think I can do a decent job of being impartial when it comes to constitutional analysis. I'm strongly pro-choice, but I think Roe v. Wade was probably decided incorrectly, and I'm not certain whether stare decisis should rescue it. I would repeal the 2nd Amendment if I had my druthers, but I think the majority opinion in Heller seems fairly persuasive. I'd love to reduce the influence of money in politics, but I believe the decision in Citizens United was sound. I hate hate hate what some states are doing to suppress the votes of minorities, but I believe the statutory provision struck down by Shelby County was constitutionally shaky.

Returning to abortion, I can also easily imagine my opposite: someone who is strongly pro-life but who accepts that the right to privacy described in Griswold is on solid footing and its extension in Roe to cover abortion is natural enough. It shouldn't be that hard to avoid conflating the constitutional issue with the object-level policy issue. If I were strongly pro-life to the point of believing that abortion is morally similar to murder, I would not necessarily feel the need to judicially recuse myself from a case about whether there's a constitutionally protected right to abortion. But if I were strongly pro-life to the point of believing that abortion is morally similar to murder and I worked as a guidance counselor, I would not be comfortable counseling a teen who was unsure about what to do with her unwanted pregnancy. My personal views would prevent me from giving competent, objective advice in that situation, and I wouldn't be the right person for the job.

In that case, I could be impartial regarding the existence of a legal right to choose abortion even if I couldn't be impartial regarding the wisdom or rectitude of actually choosing it in some particular circumstance.

Similarly, I'd guess that plenty of judges who morally oppose the death penalty could be impartial regarding the legality of capital punishment even if they couldn't be impartial regarding whether a particular defendant deserves it.

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8 hours ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

None. The issue relevant to recusal isn't "whether a particular defendant will be put to death." The issue is whether I can be impartial. Do you not believe that #1 and #2 can be rather different in that regard?

The question is whether a Supreme Court Justice can be impartial. And I’m asking you when you can decide #1 without deciding whether a particular person can be put to death as a Supreme Court Justice. Because it is relevant to recusal if you’d be deciding whether or not someone can be put to death. That’s my point from the beginning of this conversation in bringing up the “case or controversy” requirement.  

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13 hours ago, dawgtrails said:

These questions about faith and the law need to be asked. Because they sure as #### would be if there was an atheist or a muslim up for a seat

Could you expand on this a little?  It sounds like you're saying that its a good thing to probe nominees' religious views.  

Let's run with your example of a Muslim nominee.  Imagine somebody comparable to Amy Barrett -- solid educational pedigree, prestigious clerkship, by all accounts a good, distinguished law professor, etc. -- but who happens to be a devout Muslim.  This hypothetical nominee has never decided any cases that raise odd religious issues, has never written any law review articles about injecting religion into the law or anything like that.  He's just a Muslim who prays five times a day, fasts during Ramadan, abstains from alcohol and caffeine (legitimately disqualifying IMO but let's set that aside for now), took a pilgrimage to Mecca, etc.  Are you saying that it would be reasonable and proper for folks to worry that this person wants to impose Sharia law?  Or would you think that people who wring their hands over that issue were being a little xenophobic and weird?

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10 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Could you expand on this a little?  It sounds like you're saying that its a good thing to probe nominees' religious views.  

Let's run with your example of a Muslim nominee.  Imagine somebody comparable to Amy Barrett -- solid educational pedigree, prestigious clerkship, by all accounts a good, distinguished law professor, etc. -- but who happens to be a devout Muslim.  This hypothetical nominee has never decided any cases that raise odd religious issues, has never written any law review articles about injecting religion into the law or anything like that.  He's just a Muslim who prays five times a day, fasts during Ramadan, abstains from alcohol and caffeine (legitimately disqualifying IMO but let's set that aside for now), took a pilgrimage to Mecca, etc.  Are you saying that it would be reasonable and proper for folks to worry that this person wants to impose Sharia law?  Or would you think that people who wring their hands over that issue were being a little xenophobic and weird?

Seems obvious to me that he’s saying Republicans would probe nominees' religious views (to use your phrase) so might as well do it to their nominee.  I don’t read from his post he thinks it’s a good idea per se.

I, for what it’s worth, do think it’s a good idea to probe all personal views that these nominees have (religious or otherwise) to see if they would be influenced in an improper way.  I have no problem holding anybody to that standard, especially when you consider they are getting a lifetime appointment.

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21 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Could you expand on this a little?  It sounds like you're saying that its a good thing to probe nominees' religious views.  

Let's run with your example of a Muslim nominee.  Imagine somebody comparable to Amy Barrett -- solid educational pedigree, prestigious clerkship, by all accounts a good, distinguished law professor, etc. -- but who happens to be a devout Muslim.  This hypothetical nominee has never decided any cases that raise odd religious issues, has never written any law review articles about injecting religion into the law or anything like that.  He's just a Muslim who prays five times a day, fasts during Ramadan, abstains from alcohol and caffeine (legitimately disqualifying IMO but let's set that aside for now), took a pilgrimage to Mecca, etc.  Are you saying that it would be reasonable and proper for folks to worry that this person wants to impose Sharia law?  Or would you think that people who wring their hands over that issue were being a little xenophobic and weird?

I would suggest there is a reason why there is not a muslim SC justice, and it has nothing to do with their legal qualifications.

 

We ask normal jurors about their willingness to impose a death penalty, and strike any juror who says their beliefs would prohibit them from applying the death penalty.  I don't think its asking too much of a SC Justice to explore whether any beliefs, religious or otherwise, would prevent them from applying the existing law - or in shaping new interpretations.

I think you have to ask the question, and evaluate the answer and any surrounding evidence.

 

Exploring how beliefs shape the decisions of a judge is not attacking her/his religion, or in any way preventing them from practicing their religion.  Its about assuring that the government is not imposing religious beliefs on others under the guise of legal analysis.

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33 minutes ago, AAABatteries said:

Seems obvious to me that he’s saying Republicans would probe nominees' religious views (to use your phrase) so might as well do it to their nominee.  I don’t read from his post he thinks it’s a good idea per se.

Maybe, but it seems kind of odd for somebody to say "In my imagination, Republicans were jerks to my hypothetical Muslim nominee.  Therefore, in real life I'm going to be a jerk to this actual flesh-and-blood nominee.:

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21 minutes ago, Sinn Fein said:

I don't think its asking too much of a SC Justice to explore whether any beliefs, religious or otherwise, would prevent them from applying the existing law - or in shaping new interpretations.

I think you have to ask the question, and evaluate the answer and any surrounding evidence.

"Ms. Barrett, can you rule impartially and keep your religious views separate from your legal reasoning?"

"Sure."

"Thanks -- just checking."

What more are you expecting?  

Edit: Actually, what I really want to see is more like the following:

"Ms. Barrett, if you're confirmed, will your husband write your opinions for you?"

[hysterical laugher]

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I mean, if a nominee wrote an article arguing that justices should interpret the first amendment through the prism of Levitical law, then yeah sure I can see where that would be a really big deal.  Right now, though, this sounds like a handful of guys on a message board trying really hard to talk themselves into a position that they would never adopt in any other situation.  

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4 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

What more are you expecting?  

Something like this-

Whoever: Ms. Barrett you are reportedly a member of a group of "People of Praise"
Barrett: Yes, I have seen some of those reports
W: So do you care to comment on whether you are a member
B: I do not
W: On their, the People of Praise say they admire how early Christians created a community ...
B: Yes
W: ... of believers that,  whats the quote, oh,   "put their lives and their possessions in common".
B: Uh-huh
W: Would care to comment on whether you share that belief
B: I would not
W: Would not care to share, or would not agree with that
B: Yes
W: Don't understand your response
B:  Sorry
W: Okay, but the American people deserve to know that you would protect their property rights.  We are not dirty communist you know!
B: Okay
W: I yield my time back to ....
 

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34 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Maybe, but it seems kind of odd for somebody to say "In my imagination, Republicans were jerks to my hypothetical Muslim nominee.  Therefore, in real life I'm going to be a jerk to this actual flesh-and-blood nominee.:

That's exactly what the GOP is saying about the Democrats regarding this nomination.  "We are nominating a replacement justice a few weeks before an election for President because the Democrats would hypothetically do the same thing."

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Just now, The Z Machine said:

That's exactly what the GOP is saying about the Democrats regarding this nomination.  "We are nominating a replacement justice a few weeks before an election for President because the Democrats would hypothetically do the same thing."

Well, that's actually not hypothetical.  Democrats did actually nominate a justice shortly before an election, and people like me argued that they were right to do so and that their justice should have been confirmed.

It's a mystery to me how you go from that, to "we should grill nominees about their religious beliefs."  Nominating justices when your part holds the presidency is good and a normal part of how the system is supposed to work.  Imposing religious litmus tests for nominees is bad.  These two things are not comparable, and we treat them very differently because they're ethically very different.  

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1 hour ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Could you expand on this a little?  It sounds like you're saying that its a good thing to probe nominees' religious views.  

Let's run with your example of a Muslim nominee.  Imagine somebody comparable to Amy Barrett -- solid educational pedigree, prestigious clerkship, by all accounts a good, distinguished law professor, etc. -- but who happens to be a devout Muslim.  This hypothetical nominee has never decided any cases that raise odd religious issues, has never written any law review articles about injecting religion into the law or anything like that.  He's just a Muslim who prays five times a day, fasts during Ramadan, abstains from alcohol and caffeine (legitimately disqualifying IMO but let's set that aside for now), took a pilgrimage to Mecca, etc.  Are you saying that it would be reasonable and proper for folks to worry that this person wants to impose Sharia law?  Or would you think that people who wring their hands over that issue were being a little xenophobic and weird?

Id guess there would be a question about Sharia law and yes the public would be saying it (possibly even people on this board).  They would look into every Mosque that person ever attended and bring up any radical ever caught that had attended that mosque.  Obama was painted as a Muslim as a negative without any such reason to think he was either Muslim or a radical.  You don't think a lifetime appointment would get such scrutiny from the current batch of GOP senators?

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18 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Well, that's actually not hypothetical.  Democrats did actually nominate a justice shortly before an election, and people like me argued that they were right to do so and that their justice should have been confirmed.

It's a mystery to me how you go from that, to "we should grill nominees about their religious beliefs."  Nominating justices when your part holds the presidency is good and a normal part of how the system is supposed to work.  Imposing religious litmus tests for nominees is bad.  These two things are not comparable, and we treat them very differently because they're ethically very different.  

7 and a half months is shortly before an election?

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11 minutes ago, sho nuff said:

Id guess there would be a question about Sharia law and yes the public would be saying it (possibly even people on this board).  They would look into every Mosque that person ever attended and bring up any radical ever caught that had attended that mosque.  Obama was painted as a Muslim as a negative without any such reason to think he was either Muslim or a radical.  You don't think a lifetime appointment would get such scrutiny from the current batch of GOP senators?

Do you think the thing about Obama being a secret Muslim was reasonable, or do you think that folks who peddled in that sort of thing were a little crazy?

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5 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Do you think the thing about Obama being a secret Muslim was reasonable, or do you think that folks who peddled in that sort of thing were a little crazy?

Of course not...because he wasn't actually a Muslim.

Is ACB a member of this group?  If so, the questions are more reasonable...I think the hypocthetical muslim nominee is a good one.  And ACB will get a miniscule amount of critique that a Muslim would get.

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4 minutes ago, sho nuff said:

Of course not...because he wasn't actually a Muslim.

Is ACB a member of this group?  If so, the questions are more reasonable...I think the hypocthetical muslim nominee is a good one.  And ACB will get a miniscule amount of critique that a Muslim would get.

Do you think that a muslim nominee should get that kind of extra critique?

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3 minutes ago, sho nuff said:

Do you think she is getting extra critique?  Seems reasonable questions...if a muslim nominee gets reasonable questions, that is fine.  

Do you think it would be reasonable to ask a muslim nominee if he would impose sharia law on the United States?

Or, more generally, can you give some examples of questions that you consider reasonable, and some examples of questions that cross the line? 

Edit: On the topic of "extra critique," there are people in this thread seriously raising the issue of whether Barrett's husband would be writing her opinions for her.  I think that's insane.  It's on the same level as worrying about whether she's accepting bribes from drug cartels.

Edited by IvanKaramazov
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2 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Do you think it would be reasonable to ask a muslim nominee if he would impose sharia law on the United States?

Or, more generally, can you give some examples of questions that you consider reasonable, and some examples of questions that cross the line? 

Edit: On the topic of "extra critique," there are people in this thread seriously raising the issue of whether Barrett's husband would be writing her opinions for her.  I think that's insane.  It's on the same level as worrying about whether she's accepting bribes from drug cartels.

IF the person had never showed one single notion of imposing sharia law?  Had not been a part of some fringe group that pushes or supports it?  No...I would not find that reasonable.

The same generic questions about putting faith above the law that we are discussing for ACB is what I am getting at.  I think people are raising the issue because of the group she is associated with.

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