Friday, January 23, 2009

Now that my Huge Important Work Project is winding down, hopefully I'll have some energy to bring you more funny history.

Today I spent some time reading up on G. Harrold Carswell, Nixon's second failed nominee to the Supreme Court slot left vacant by Abe Fortas in 1970. Carswell was an utterly mediocre judge with an objectionable civil rights record, and he was summarily rejected by the Senate, 51-45. He had his share of supporters, though, especially among Southerners and Republicans.

Senator Roman Hruska of Nebraska said this about Carswell: "There are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers. They are entitled to a little representation, aren't they? We can't have all Brandeises, Frankfurters and Cardozos and stuff like that there."

...yeah. For the highest court in the nation, someone thought we needed to make sure mediocrity is represented. Although now that I think of it, that line of reasoning might go a small distance toward explaining Harriet Miers.

Let's hope our new president likes the idea of having all Brandeises, Frankfurters, and Cardozos, just in case he's got the opportunity to nominate some and stuff like that there.