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Tuesday, January 10, 2006
ABA Recommendations Suddenly Meaningful Again
Topic: Free Congress Foundation
Has the Free Congress Foundation changed its mind about the American Bar Association's recommendations on judicial candidates?

The FCF used to be opposed to attaching any importance to ABA recommendations. As Tom Jipping, then-director of the FCF's Center for Law and Democracy, wrote in a March 2001 FCF commentary, "the quality of the ABA's work on such matters is even more suspect." He added:

Having the playing field unequal, with the ABA enjoying a huge advantage over everyone else, was accomplishing something the political left found very important. Could it be that the ABA's input produced not just objective information about candidates' competence but subjective information about candidates' politics?

How times change. Marion Edwyn Harrison, FCF president and counsel, wrote in a Jan. 9 commentary (reproduced at Accuracy in Media):

Likewise no Senator has responded meaningfully to the fact that the American Bar Association ("ABA") Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary unanimously accorded Judge [Samuel] Alito its highest rating: "Well Qualified."

[...]

Thus, the ABA Committee clearly conferred its highest approbation upon Judge Alito's nomination by evaluating his merits - not his personal views, the positions he took on behalf of clients, his practicing Roman Catholicism or his allegedly dangerous conservatism.

[...]

Let's dispense with the mindless and often vicious negativism and, as the ABA Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary did, consider the nominee's merits.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:10 PM EST

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