I seem to be making a habit of quoting George Will — Here’s a non-hysterical conservative Republican’s response to Sen. McCain’s hysterical, pandering overreaction to the Supreme Court’s decision in the Guantanamo habeas case. In case you don’t want to click on the link, or don’t want to read the part where he throws a bone to the dissenters, here’s the start:
The day after the Supreme Court ruled that detainees imprisoned at Guantanamo are entitled to seek habeas corpus hearings, John McCain called it “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country.” Well.
Does it rank with Dred Scott v. Sanford (1857), which concocted a constitutional right, unmentioned in the document, to own slaves and held that black people have no rights that white people are bound to respect? With Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), which affirmed the constitutionality of legally enforced racial segregation? With Korematsu v. United States (1944), which affirmed the wartime right to sweep American citizens of Japanese ancestry into concentration camps?
Did McCain’s extravagant condemnation of the court’s habeas ruling result from his reading the 126 pages of opinions and dissents? More likely, some clever ignoramus convinced him that this decision could make the Supreme Court — meaning, which candidate would select the best judicial nominees — a campaign issue.
I’m with Vicky. I don’t want John McCain to appoint Supreme Court justices — he doesn’t get the idea of an independent judiciary, and is cynical about civil rights. He seems to share with Mr. Bush an inability to conceive that his judgments might be incorrect, and therefore to conceive of the value of judicially-enforced limitations on presidential power.