Raw Data: Reactions to Nomination

Published October 31, 2005

| Associated Press

Here are statements that various members of Congress and other figures made in reaction to President Bush's selection of federal appellate court Judge Samuel Alito (search) Monday to be a member of the U.S. Supreme Court:

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"Judge Alito's reputation has only grown over the span of his service. He has participated in thousands of appeals and authored hundreds of opinions. This record reveals a thoughtful judge who considers the legal matter — marriage carefully and applies the law in a principled fashion. He has a deep understanding of the proper role of judges in our society. He understands that judges are to interpret the laws, not to impose their preferences or priorities on the people." — President Bush.

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"The Supreme Court is an institution that I have long held in reverence. During my 29 years as a public servant, I've had the opportunity to view the Supreme Court from a variety of perspectives — as an attorney in the Solicitor General's Office, arguing and briefing cases before the Supreme Court, as a federal prosecutor, and most recently for the last 15 years as a judge of the Court of Appeals." — Judge Samuel Alito.

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"Judge Alito is unquestionably qualified to serve on our nation's highest court. And on the bench, he has displayed a judicial philosophy marked by judicial restraint and respect for the limited role of the judiciary to interpret the law and not legislate from the bench." — Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (search), R-Tenn.

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"The nomination of Judge Alito requires an especially long, hard look by the Senate because of what happened last week to Harriet Miers. Conservative activists forced Miers to withdraw from consideration for this same Supreme Court seat because she was not radical enough for them. Now the Senate needs to find out if the man replacing Miers is too radical for the American people." — Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (search), D-Nev.

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"Rather than selecting a nominee for the good of the nation and the court, President Bush has picked a nominee whom he hopes will stop the massive hemorrhaging of support on his right wing. This is a nomination based on weakness, not strength." — Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (search), D-Mass.

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"Judge Alito is the best there is. The Democrat-controlled Senate recognized these qualities in Judge Alito when it unanimously confirmed him to the court of appeals." — Wendy Long, counsel for the conservative Judicial Confirmation Network (search).

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"President Bush put the demands of his far-right political base above Americans' constitutional rights and legal protections by nominating federal appeals court Judge Samuel Alito to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor." — Ralph Neas, president of the liberal People For the American Way.

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"The president has made an excellent choice today which reflects his commitment to appoint judges in the mold of (Antonin) Scalia and (Clarence) Thomas. Sam Alito, a 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals judge, has consistently embraced the original intent of the Constitution." — Kay Daly, president of the conservative Coalition for a Fair Judiciary.

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"It is sad that the president felt he had to pick a nominee likely to divide America instead of choosing a nominee in the mold of Sandra Day O'Connor, who would unify us. This controversial nominee, who would make the court less diverse and far more conservative, will get very careful scrutiny from the Senate and from the American people." — Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.

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"The president has repeatedly said that he is looking for someone with strong intellect, temperament and reverence for the Constitution to replace Justice O'Connor. Judge Alito is a triple play." — Adam Ciongoli, a former law clerk for Judge Alito and former counsel to Attorney General John Ashcroft.

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"The nomination of Harriet Miers has split conservatives unlike anything I can remember. The debate will not end, in fact it will become more intense." — Gary Bauer, a onetime Republican presidential candidate who now heads the conservative group American Values Coalition.

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"Since Justice OConnor announced her resignation, the president has engaged in unprecedented consultation with the United States Senate. It is now the responsibility of the Senate to consider this nomination in a thorough and timely fashion." — Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas.

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"Now the gauntlet has been, I think, thrown down. It was humiliating, it was degrading and it's a profound and distributing view of Judge Alito that he would uphold spousal notification as he did in the Pennsylvania case, and it raises concerns about his views of women." — Kate Michelman, former president of NARAL-Pro Choice America.

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"I commend the president and congratulate Judge Alito on this nomination, and I look forward to the upcoming confirmation hearing, during which members of the Judiciary Committee will have a robust and, I hope, civil dialogue with the nominee about the meaning of the Constitution and the role of the courts in American life." — Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan.

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"Judge Alito is exactly the far-right nominee that the Republican Party's reactionary wing demanded after it 'Borked' Harriet Miers. Judge Alito is to the right of the existing Supreme Court on abortion, and he's to the right of all nine justices, even Scalia and Thomas, in advocating an extremely high burden of proof for employment discrimination cases." — Scott Moss, Marquette University Law School professor.

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"Unlike John Roberts and Harriet Miers, Judge Alito's record on the Third Circuit will allow us to have a real debate about some of the important legal issues of the day. Moreover, because of his intellect and grasp of constitutional issues, Judge Alito, if confirmed, is likely to have an influence on the intellectual direction of the Court." — David Stras, professor of law at the University of Minnesota.

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http://www.foxnews.com/story/2005/10/31/raw-data-reactions-to-nomination