Video: Chuck Schumer, call your office!

posted at 12:55 pm on May 28, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

The guys at Verum Serum do another great job of raiding the memory banks to put a Democrat on the spot, with a big assist from Gateway Pundit.  This time, it’s Senator Chuck Schumer, seen over the years insisting that he believes in judicial restraint.  Really.  No kidding.  Well, maybe:

Why all of Schumer’s interest in judicial restraint? At the time, Schumer wanted to keep the Bush administration from moving the appellate court to the right, and framed these comments in the context of the Miguel Estrada nomination, among others. That’s why he happily agreed with C-SPAN’s “very conservative” callers on judicial activism, which he apparently defines as an inappropriately low level of respect for stare decisis.

Of course, that makes this clip a little more relevant to Schumer’s main objection:

These quotes can be found on Heritage’s blog site:

The constant development of unprecedented problems requires a legal system capable of fluidity and pliancy. Our society would be strait-jacketed were not the courts, with the able assistance of the lawyers, constantly overhauling the law and adapting it to the realities of ever-changing social, industrial and political conditions; although changes cannot be made lightly, yet law must be more or less impermanent, experimental and therefore not nicely calculable. Much of the uncertainty of law is not an unfortunate accident: it is of immense social value.

Er, doesn’t the “fluidity” and the endorsement of courts “overhauling” the law speak directly to Schumer’s concern on judicial activism?  Schumer and his pals practically demanded a religious devotion to stare decisis from John Roberts and Samuel Alito, who never wrote anything like this in their careers.  Will Schumer & Co demand that Sotomayor disavow these sentiments?  Will they even bother asking for an explanation of them?

Let’s hope Jeff Sessions is all over this; it’s good to see Orrin Hatch, one of the gentlemen of the upper chamber, already exposing these statements.

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Schumateurism of the Day?

LibTired (KO) on May 28, 2009 at 12:57 PM

Come on, GOP, get out the wheelbarrows…and you know what to do next…

bridgetown on May 28, 2009 at 12:58 PM

“I verily believe Christianity necessary to the support of civil society. One of the beautiful boasts of
our municipal jurisprudence is that Christianity is a part of the Common Law. . . There never has been a period in which the Common Law did not recognize Christianity as lying its foundations.”
[Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States; and 1829 speech at Harvard]

“Infidels and pagans were banished from the halls of justice as unworthy of credit.”
[Life and letters of Joseph Story, Vol. II 1851, pp. 8-9]

Justice Joseph Story was appointed to the SCOTUS by President James Madison, and served from Feb 3, 1812 to Sept 10, 1845.

So sure, let’s not upset the apple cart with judicial activism. Let’s stay true to the founders’ intentions.

Akzed on May 28, 2009 at 1:00 PM

My question for Schumer is why he supports Sotomayor, because she is Catholic and he made it clear in the Alito hearings that he doesn’t believe Catholics can be impartial judges.

rockmom on May 28, 2009 at 1:03 PM

and because of the MSM, this will be nothing

jp on May 28, 2009 at 1:03 PM

How does one’s hair stand on edge?

d1carter on May 28, 2009 at 1:08 PM

There’s so much ammo to use not only against Sotomayor, but the democrats themselves that the GOP should be having a field day.

darwin on May 28, 2009 at 1:08 PM

when will these confirmation hearings begin?

ctmom on May 28, 2009 at 1:09 PM

The urge to kick in this man’s face rages within me. He deserves to be tied to four horses going in different directions.

SouthernGent on May 28, 2009 at 1:19 PM

How does one’s hair stand on edge?

d1carter on May 28, 2009 at 1:08 PM

Yeah – I caught that too. And what’s weird is he said it in two separate discussions, like it’s a normal statement.

My hair tends to stand on end every day I hear of another socialist power grab by this Obamanation administration.

tru2tx on May 28, 2009 at 1:20 PM

I hate to have to say this but folks here should be prepared for and not be shocked by the Republican Party when it fails to put up any sort of real fight against this nomination. The Republican Party, to me, is more despicable than the Democrat Party because the Republicans are supposed to know better. They are supposed to stand for smaller government, the Constitution, and free markets. They fail, fail, and fail again to live up to those ideals. They only try to trick voters into believing their conservative credentials when it comes to election time. It is time for a different party to get conservative support.

King of the Britons on May 28, 2009 at 1:25 PM

The bad thing is that Chuck the Schmuck makes Hillary the good Senator from New York.

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on May 28, 2009 at 1:25 PM

Is it me or do you see the same slimy, shifty things in Schumer, Reid, Axelrod, Emanuel, Frank, and Pelosi? Seriously. Shifty-eyed crooks.

marklmail on May 28, 2009 at 1:32 PM

My criteria is the same as it’s always been…

Obviously his criteria is “what ever will get me the most votes”.

Tommy_G on May 28, 2009 at 1:33 PM

THAT WAS GREAT! That is what we need more of! Wimp Republicans, grow a pair and start using these wonderful tools the folks are giving you!

echosyst on May 28, 2009 at 1:33 PM

Chuckie is the very reason people hate politicians. They say something that all Americans fervently believe then stab their constituents in the back by doing the very opposite. The deception is always there.

volsense on May 28, 2009 at 1:38 PM

Schumateurism of the Day?

LibTired (KO) on May 28, 2009 at 12:57 PM

There’s not enough bandwidth…..

We have to remember that this is Schumer’s baby….and most likely he considers this (nomination) part of his own pathetic legacy.

Rovin on May 28, 2009 at 1:38 PM

D = Duplicitous

kirkill on May 28, 2009 at 1:38 PM

THAT WAS GREAT! That is what we need more of! Wimp Republicans, grow a pair and start using these wonderful tools the folks are giving you!

echosyst on May 28, 2009 at 1:33 PM

Sometimes I wonder, if promises of security, and prominence, in their elected offices have been offered, in exchange for their (Republicans) silence, and contentedness.

So many issues, that seem to arise daily, and go unchallenged by Democrats. I can only ask ….why? This to me, seems to be the only logical conclusion, I have come to, at this point.

capejasmine on May 28, 2009 at 1:41 PM

Is that the same pix as all the others? Or does he always manage to look supercilious and superior no matter what the occasion?

jeanie on May 28, 2009 at 1:43 PM

From over @ Ace’s place:

Look, there are not many ways to defeat a presidential nominee for the Supreme Court, especially when the President’s party has control of the Senate. But once in a while you get lucky and the President nominates somebody who even his own people will run from.
That’s what happened with Harriet Miers and I think that’s what can happen for Sonia Sotomayor. It’s not that difficult:

Judge Sotomayor has given us no reason to believe she is capable of approaching cases involving white people or men without discriminating against them. In fact, she’s given several reasons to believe that the opposite is true.

This is disgusting racial bias that even a Democrat can recognize. The only question will be whether Republicans have the stones to point it out even as the White House “warns” us not to.

ExTex on May 28, 2009 at 1:45 PM

Walked right past him on a quiet Brooklyn street a year or so ago and man was I tempted

J.J. Sefton on May 28, 2009 at 1:55 PM

The only question will be whether Republicans have the stones to point it out even as the White House “warns” us not to.

When the WH “warns” people not to do something, it’s time to do exactly what they are warning against; it’s a sign of their weakness.

Ogabe and the other demorat tools can pound sand, this is still a Republic and their “warnings” should be shoved down their own throats with a pitchfork.

Bishop on May 28, 2009 at 1:57 PM

Ogabe and the other demorat tools can pound sand, this is still a Republic and their “warnings” should be shoved down their own throats with a pitchfork.

Bishop on May 28, 2009 at 1:57 PM

Yup.

ExTex on May 28, 2009 at 2:03 PM

The court is always required to apply the law to new facts, and that is legitimate. There were no telephones back in the days of the drafters. So, the court was right in fashioning rules with respect to wiretapping under the rubric of the 4th Amendment. When the world changes, the court is required to adapt the Constitution to changing facts. The problem that I have is when the court is seen as an avenue of achieving social change that could not be achieved at the ballot box.

Homosexuality has always existed. It was not a new modern development when the SCOTUS found a new never before discovered right to homosexual fornication in Lawrence v. Texas. Nothing had changed since Bowers v. Hardwick other than the composition of the court and possibly public perception. That is a perfect example of the Constitution being written on an Etch-A-Sketch™. Regardless of your position on homosexuality, abortion, eminent domain, etc. we should all be concerned with a Constitution that changes along with public perception.

The question is, should changes in public perception change the meaning of the Constitution? And if so, who should decide that public perception has actually changed — a 9 person star chamber or democracy?

I know statists who want to control my thermostat, tell me what car I drive and which Chrysler dealership I can shop at, will feel very comfortable with such decision being made by 9 political apparatiks.

tommylotto on May 28, 2009 at 2:16 PM

The constant development of unprecedented problems requires a legal system capable of fluidity and pliancy. Our society would be strait-jacketed were not the courts…

Those are not her words. She is quoting Jerome Frank.

SlimyBill on May 28, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Maybe it’s my dislexia, but everytime I see the name Chuck Schumer my mind reads it as Schmuck. Funny how that is.

Zorg on May 28, 2009 at 2:52 PM

Yes, but all she said was that

Court of Appeals is where policy is made.”

And then notice that she quickly caught herself clarified her comment and said,

And I know, and I know this is on tape — I should never say that ’cause ‘we don’t make law’ . . . I know. Ummmm . . . uhhhh . . . Okay. I know. I know. I’m not promoting it, I’m not advocating it, I’m . . . you know . . .

I’m assuming that her flailing hand movements gesticulating at the moment she said “’cause we don’t make law” meant she was putting quotation marks around what she clearly considers utter hogwash a political shibboleth.

So, what she really meant to say was that the Court of Appeals does set the policies, and that legislators just pass laws, no?

Gee, the only things that are really upsetting about that are:

1. the fact that the judiciary is the least democratic of our institutions, and 2. constitutionally, the judiciary has the fewest checks on it’s power.

Otherwise . . . okay. I know. I know . . . you know . . .

Trochilus on May 28, 2009 at 3:24 PM

Chucky, how do you respond to Ms. Sotomoyer claim that the court is where policy is made – oops is this on tape you know, uh you know.

MSGTAS on May 29, 2009 at 10:28 AM