- John Roberts Supreme Court nomination
The Senate hearings on the nomination of
John Robertsto the Supreme Court, began on September 12, 2005, with U.S. Senators posing questions to Roberts, who was nominated by President George W. Bushto fill the vacancy of Chief Justice of the United States.
Roberts had been nominated upon
Chief Justice William Rehnquist's death. On September 5, President Bush announced the nomination of Roberts for the position of Chief Justice. On September 6, President Bush formally sent notice to the United States Senateof the new nomination and the withdrawal of Roberts' prior nomination.
September 29, Roberts was confirmed as Chief Justice by a full Senate vote of 78-22. The 50-year old Roberts became the youngest Chief Justice since John Marshall, who was 45 when he joined the court in 1801.
Prior to naming Roberts, Bush reportedly considered a wide range of candidates.
With the death of Chief Justice Rehnquist, Bush withdrew Roberts' nomination for associate justice and renominated him for chief justice, with only a slight delay in his confirmation hearings to allow for Rehnquist's funeral services.
Fred Dalton Thompsonhelped to promote Roberts' nomination. The nomination was first considered by the 18-member Senate Judiciary Committee. The committee was allowed to send the nomination to the Senate with their approval, send it to the Senate with no opinion, or decline to forward the nomination. On September 22, the committee voted 13-5 to send Roberts' confirmation to the full Senate.
September 29, Roberts was confirmed by the full Senate by a vote of [http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=109&session=1&vote=00245 78-22] . Hours after confirmation, he was sworn in by Associate Justice John Paul Stevensat the White House.
Role of the ABA
Nominees to the Supreme Court are evaluated by the
American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Federal Judiciary. The opinions of the committee bind neither the President nor the Senate; however, they are generally taken into account.The panel is composed of fifteen federal judges (but not Supreme Court Justices), including at least one from each federal judicial circuit. The body assesses the nominee "solely to professional qualifications: integrity, professional competence and judicial temperament," and offers a rating of "well qualified," "qualified," or "not qualified." On August 17, the ABA committee unanimously gave Roberts a "well qualified" rating.
Judiciary Committee questionnaire
Roberts' total assets were stated as being approximately US $6 million, with sizable investments in
XM Satellite Radio, Dell, Inc., and Texas Instruments. His home in Bethesda, Marylandwas valued at $1.3 million.Fact|date=March 2008
How the hearings progressed
Senate Judiciary CommitteeChairman Arlen Specterhad called for a final vote by the committee on or before September 15, but Rehnquist's death and the renomination of Roberts for Chief Justice caused a delay.first round of questioning, each Senator having 30 minutes to query the nominee. During the course of the day, Roberts answered questions from 16 of the 18 committee members, on a variety of topics. He affirmed his commitment to a constitutional right to privacy, clarified his position on civil rights during wartime, and took a conservative position on the use of international law in interpreting the U.S. Constitution. [http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4845368]
September 14, the hearing resumed at 9:00am, with the completion of the first round of questioning, followed by the start of the second round of questioning. Questioning did not finish this day, and was scheduled to be continued the next day.
September 15, the hearing again resumed at 9:00am, with the completion of the final round of questioning of Roberts. Later, the committee went into private session to discuss FBI reports on the nominee, a standard procedure followed for all nominees to federal courts. Following this, the committee heard testimony from the American Bar Association and six panels of various witnesses for the remainder of the afternoon and into early evening. The hearings were adjourned with 24 hours to remain for committee members to submit written questions to Roberts, which were to be answered by him as thoroughly as practicable.
September 22, the committee voted 13-5 to send Roberts' confirmation to the full Senate. Senators Biden, Durbin, Feinstein, Kennedy, and Schumer were the five "no" voters. The full 100-member Senate subsequently debated Roberts' nomination, beginning on September 26.
The Senate voted on the nomination beginning at 11:30 a.m. EDT on
September 29, with Roberts winning confirmation by a 78-22 vote. All 55 Republicans voted to confirm Roberts; 22 Democrats, including Senate Judiciary Committeeranking member Patrick Leahyof Vermont, also voted to confirm Roberts, as did the one independent ( Jim Jeffords). 22 Democrats, including Senate Minority Leader Harry Reidof Nevada, voted in opposition.
Questions and answers
During Judge William Pryor's confirmation hearings for a federal bench in Atlanta, Senator
Charles Schumersaid he was troubled by Pryor's "deeply held personal beliefs." [http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/presser_rice200509130813.asp] There were predictions by some, notably the Catholic League for Civil and Religious Rights[http://catholicleague.org/research/rippingroberts.htm] , Notre Dame law professor Charles Rice in the National Review[http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/presser_rice200509130813.asp] , the Center for Jewish Valuesand the Catholic organization Fidelis. [http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/presser_rice200509130813.asp] , that the pattern would be repreated with Roberts' confirmation hearing. Most Rev. Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Denver, notes that "many people already believe that a new kind of religious discrimination is very welcome at the Capitol, even among elected officials who claim to be Catholic," concluding that "the bias against ' papism' is alive and well in America." However, others do not interpret the clause as prohibiting Senate inquiry into the religious beliefs of a nominee; rather they hold that religious inquiries by the Senate are not the application of a religious Test (or disqualification), but a valid form of inquiry into Roberts' source of values and beliefs, which they consider to be highly relevant to a position such as Supreme Court Justice.
On September 13, during the second day of confirmation hearings Senator
Arlen Specterasked Roberts whether his faith would affect his opinions on the bench. Roberts responded that "there is nothing in my personal view based on faith or other sources that would prevent me from applying the precedents of the court faithfully in accord with the principles of stare decisis." Later the same day, he also said "my faith and my religious beliefs do not play a role in my judging. ... I look to the law. I do not look to the Bible or other religious books." [http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4845368] On September 14, Senator Dianne Feinsteinasked Roberts about the "role Catholicism would play" in his tenure as a justice. Roberts declined to endorse President Kennedy's statement that "separation of church and state is absolute," telling Feinstein, "I don't know what you mean by 'absolute.' " Some consider such questioning to be a revival of anti-Catholic bigotry reminiscent of the public concern about Catholic influence that presidential candidate John F. Kennedyfaced in 1960, and exemplified by the controversial Blaine Amendments. [http://www.opinionjournal.com/nextjustice/?id=110007259]
While investigating Roberts' life, the "
New York Times" was accused of attempting to unseal records detailing the 2000 adoption by Roberts and his wife of two Irish infants via a Latin American country. The "Times" denied any attempts to unseal legal records and stated that " [o] ur reporters made initial inquiries about the adoptions" and " [t] hey did so with great care, understanding the sensitivity of the issue."
The "Times" was condemned by the [http://www.ncfa-usa.org/National National Council for Adoption] , "NCFA denounces, in the strongest possible terms, the shocking decision of the "New York Times" to investigate the adoption records of Justice John Roberts' two young children. The adoption community is outraged that, for obviously political reasons, the "Times" has targeted the very private circumstances, motivations, and processes by which the Roberts became parents." [http://www.thestate.com/mld/thestate/news/special_packages/election2004/12316546.htm]
Judge Roberts has stated that he cannot recall ever having been a member of the
Federalist Society. He sought and received published corrections from several major news organizations retracting earlier reports that he had been a member. On 25 July2005, however, the Washington Postreported that John Roberts is listed in the Society's 1997–1998 leadership Directory as serving on the Steering Committee of the Federalist Society. The same source also indicates the possibility that the individuals listed in the "leadership directory" are, in a technical sense, not necessarily "members" of the society, and no confirmable membership information is officially disclosed by the Society itself.
2000 Presidential Election
While an attorney at
Hogan & Hartson, Roberts met with Florida Governor Jeb Bushand gave advice on the legal aspects of election disputes during the Florida recount of 2000. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/21/politics/21florida.html "Nominee Gave Quiet Advice on Recount"] , New York Times, July 21, 2005] According to Ted Cruz, an advisor on Bush's 2000 campaign, Roberts helped polish some legal briefs and held a "moot court" session to prepare Bush's lawyers for arguments in Bush v. Palm Beach County Canvassing Boardand Bush v. Gore. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/28/politics/28confirm.html "Panel Sends Judge 10-Page Questionnaire"] , New York Times, July 25, 2005]
NARAL airs, then pulls, controversial advertisement
10 August2005, NARAL Pro-Choice America, an advocate for legal abortiongroup, aired controversial advertisements [http://download.ifilm.com/qt/portal/2677570_300.mov] featuring Emily Lyons, an abortion clinic director who was injured in the Eric Rudolphclinic bombing in 1998. The ad alleged that
:Supreme Court nominee John Roberts filed court briefs supporting violent fringe groups and a convicted clinic bomber… America can't afford a justice whose ideology leads him to excuse violence against other Americans.
The ads ran only in
Maineand Rhode Island, the home states of moderate Republican Senators, Olympia Snowe, Susan Collinsand Lincoln Chafee.
The brief, which was filed almost seven years before the bombing of Lyons' clinic and which dealt with obstructing access to clinics, not bombings [http://www.factcheck.org/article340.html] , argued that while abortion protesters from
Operation Rescuecould not be prosecuted under the 1871 Federal Ku Klux Klan Act for discrimination, they had violated state law by trespassing. Ultimately, the Supreme Courtagreed, ruling 6 to 3 in " Bray v. Alexandria Women's Health Clinic" that opposition to abortion did not constitute discrimination against women "as is evident from the fact that men and women are on both sides of the issue, just as men and women are on both sides of petitioners' unlawful demonstrations.".
Even before the ad was shown on
television, White Housespokesman Steve Schmidtresponded to NARAL's attempt to smear Roberts by linking him to anti-abortion extremists, arguing that the claims were "outrageously false, bordering on the slanderous." While Roberts in his "amicus" brief for the Government, argued that abortion protestors could not be prosecuted federally for discrimination, he pointed out that the defendants obstruction was illegal under Virginia law. Further, Roberts has argued in a Reagan administration memo that violence such as bombings had no protection under the law: "No matter how lofty or sincerely held the goal, those who resort to violence to achieve it are criminals," he wrote. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/08/08/AR2005080801460.html] NARAL was unimpressed with this memo, arguing that it was not an official action like his "amicus" brief.
NARAL argued that "This wasn't an arcane legal dispute, but a fight over whether or not law enforcement could use their most effective weapon [the Klan Act] against extremists who use violence." [http://www.prochoiceamerica.org/Issues/supremecourt/roberts_spin.cfm] After the "Bray" decision, Congress passed the
Freedom of Access to Clinics Entrances Act, which criminalized obstructing access to abortion clinics at the Federal level, effectively replacing the Klan Act with an even more effective legal weapon against those that obstructed access to clinics. " National Review Online" argued that "The fact that this law failed to deter the 1998 bombing that injured the clinic worker featured in NARAL's ad makes it all the more ludicrous to suggest that Roberts's proper reading of the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871 in 1991 is somehow responsible." [http://bench.nationalreview.com/archives/072303.asp]
In the face of intense criticism even among supporters of legal abortion, NARAL eventually withdrew the inflammatory ads.
2003 hearings on appeals court nomination
During Judiciary Committee hearings on his nomination to the circuit court, Roberts testified on his background and views on jurisprudence. [http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/26jan20041230/www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate/pdf/108hrg/92548.pdf] Roberts was subsequently approved by the Senate by
unanimous consent. [http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?r108:S08MY3-0018:]
General approach to the Constitution
Because he has been a judge for only two years, Roberts does not have an extensive case history from which a general approach to the Constitution can be determined, and he appears not to have publicly stated his views on the subject. He has even said that "I do not think beginning with an all-encompassing approach to constitutional interpretation is the best way to faithfully construe the document," which frustrated the Senators during his 2003 nomination. [http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=108_senate_hearings&docid=f:92548.wais] In law professor
Randy Barnett's words, "In his distinguished career, he has somehow managed not to give a speech or write an article that reveals the core of his judicial philosophy. As a result, we simply have no idea what to expect from him". [http://volokh.com/archives/archive_2005_07_17-2005_07_23.shtml#1121879251] Cass Sunstein, a law professor at the University of Chicagoargues that in general, Roberts appears to be a judicial minimalist, emphasizing precedent, as opposed to an originalism-oriented or rights-focused jurist. "Judge Roberts' opinions thus far are careful, lawyerly, and narrow. They avoid broad pronouncements. They do not try to reorient the law." [http://www.tnr.com/doc.mhtml?i=20050801&s=sunstein080105]
The Commerce Clause
[S] tarting with "
McCulloch v. Maryland", Chief Justice Marshall gave a very broad and expansive reading to the powers of the Federal Government and explained that—and I don't remember the exact quote—but if the ends be legitimate, then any means chosen to achieve them are within the power of the Federal Government, and cases interpreting that, throughout the years, have come down. Certainly, by the time "Lopez" was decided, many of us had learned in law school that it was just sort of a formality to say that interstate commerce was affected and that cases weren't going to be thrown out that way. "Lopez" certainly breathed new life into the Commerce Clause.
I think it remains to be seen, in subsequent decisions, how rigorous a showing, and in many cases, it is just a showing. It's not a question of an abstract fact, does this affect interstate commerce or not, but has this body, the Congress, demonstrated the impact on interstate commerce that drove them to legislate? That's a very important factor. It wasn't present in "Lopez" at all. I think the members of Congress had heard the same thing I had heard in law school, that this is an important—and they hadn't gone through the process of establishing a record in that case. [http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/26jan20041230/www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate/pdf/108hrg/92548.pdf]
[S] imply because you have a problem that needs addressing, it's not necessarily the case that Federal legislation is the best way to address it… [T] he constitutional limitation doesn't turn on whether it's a good idea. There is not a "good idea" clause in the Constitution. It can be a bad idea, but certainly still satisfy the constitutional requirements. [http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/26jan20041230/www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate/pdf/108hrg/92548.pdf]
Judicial activism and deference to legislatures
[T] he Supreme Court has, throughout its history, on many occasions described the deference that is due to legislative judgments. Justice Holmes described assessing the constitutionality of an act of Congress as the gravest duty that the Supreme Court is called upon to perform… [I] t's a principle that is easily stated and needs to be observed in practice, as well as in theory.
Now, the Court, of course, has the obligation, and has been recognized since "
Marbury v. Madison", to assess the constitutionality of acts of Congress, and when those acts are challenged, it is the obligation of the Court to say what the law is. The determination of when deference to legislative policy judgments goes too far and becomes abdication of the judicial responsibility, and when scrutiny of those judgments goes too far on the part of the judges and becomes what I think is properly called judicial activism, that is certainly the central dilemma of having an unelected, as you describe it correctly, undemocratic judiciary in a democratic republic. [http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/26jan20041230/www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate/pdf/108hrg/92548.pdf]
In referring to Brown v. Board that overturned school segregation:"The Court in that case, of course, overruled a prior decision. I don't think that constitutes judicial activism because obviously if the decision is wrong, it should be overruled. That's not activism. That's applying the law correctly."
Record as an attorney
[T] here is a longstanding tradition in our country — dating back to one of the more famous episodes, of course, being
John Adams' representation of the British soldiers involved in the Boston Massacre— that the positions a lawyer presents on behalf of a client should not be ascribed to that lawyer as his personal beliefs or his personal positions. [http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=108_senate_hearings&docid=f:92548.wais]
On "Roe v. Wade"
When testifying before the Senate in 2003, Roberts acknowledged that, on the Circuit Court, he would have an obligation to follow precedents established by the Supreme Court, including the controversial decision invalidating many restrictions on the right to an
abortion. He stated: " Roe v. Wade" is the settled law of the land… There is nothing in my personal views that would prevent me from fully and faithfully applying that precedent, as well as "Casey"." [http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=108_senate_hearings&docid=f:92548.wais] This consideration would not apply if he were a Justice of the Supreme Court, however. In that capacity he would be entitled to vote to limit or overturn "Roe" and related cases.
1983memo analyzing a Senate resolution to limit the judges to 10-year terms, Roberts questioned the desirability of lifetime tenure, arguing that when the Constitution was drafted, "people simply did not live as long as they do now" and that contemporary judges risked "los [ing] all touch with reality through decades of ivory tower existence" by becoming "insulated from the normal currents of life for 25 or 30 years." He also saw limiting the terms of judges as a good way to ensure turnover and to prevent judges from becoming too activistref|Yahoo. This could not be extended to the Supreme Court, and Roberts' position now, because of the express constitutional requirement of a life term.
Judge Roberts has specifically disassociated himself from cases he was involved with during his tenure as Deputy Solicitor General. In a footnote to a
1994 law reviewarticle, he wrote:
: In the interest of full disclosure, the author would like to point out that as Deputy Solicitor General for a portion of the
1992–'93 term, he was involved in many of the cases discussed below. In the interest of even fuller disclosure, he would also like to point out that his views as a commentator on those cases do not necessarily reflect his views as an advocate for his former client, the United States.
Notable arguments on behalf of clients
As Deputy Solicitor General
Arguing for the results sought by his client, the President of the United States)
Roberts is listed as a coauthor on a brief before the Supreme Court in "
Rust v. Sullivan", 500 U.S. 173 ( 1991), defending the validity of a Department of Health and Human Servicesregulation that prohibited recipients of funding under the Public Health Service Actfrom not only providing abortions, but also counselling, advising, or promoting the idea that a woman seek an abortion:
We continue to believe that "The brief in question lists the following authors: Michael J. Astrue,
Roe v. Wade" was wrongly decided and should be overruled. As more fully explained in our briefs, filed as amicus curiae, in " Hodgson v. Minnesota", 110 S. Ct. 2926 (1990); " Webster v. Reproductive Health Services", 109 S. Ct. 3040 (1989); " Thornburgh v. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists", 476 U.S. 747 (1986); and " City of Akron v. Akron Center for Reproductive Health", 462 U.S. 416 (1983), the Court's conclusions in "Roe" that there is a fundamental right to an abortion and that government has no compelling interest in protecting prenatal human life throughout pregnancy find no support in the text, structure, or history of the Constitution. [http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?navby=search&court=US&case=/us/500/173.html] General Counsel; Joel Mangel, Deputy Chief Counsel; Carol C. Conrad, Attorney, Department of Health and Human Services; Kenneth W. Starr, Solicitor General; Stuart M. Gerson, Assistant Attorney General; John G. Roberts, Jr., Deputy Solicitor General; Jeffrey P. Minear, Assistant to the Solicitor General; Anthony J. Steinmeyer, Lowell v. Sturgill, Jr., Attorneys.
For further discussion of Roberts's views on "Roe", see his comments at the Judiciary Committee hearings under "Views."
Roberts argued against the private citizen's right to sue the federal government for violations of environmental regulations in "
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife", 504 U.S. 555 (1992).
eparation of church and state
In a [http://www.usdoj.gov/osg/briefs/1990/sg900105.txt brief] in "
Lee v. Weisman", 505 U.S. 577, a 1992case about school prayer, Roberts wrote that "history shows that religious acknowledgments were part of the ceremonies of all three branches of government when the Republic was founded," and that " [n] othing in the text of the Establishment Clause or in the concerns leading to its adoption suggests that a ceremonial acknowledgment of religion is a "law respecting an establishment of religion.'" In the process, he argued that the " Lemon v. Kurtzman," which was used as precedent for "Lee", was wrongly decided. He argued that " Marsh v. Chambers", a competing precedent on church-state separation that is less restrictive, is a clearer decision that better interprets the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. [http://minipundit.typepad.com/minipundit/2005/07/lee_vs_weisman.html]
Private law practice
(arguing for the results sought by his clients)
In the case "Bragg v. West Virginia Coal Association", Roberts argued on behalf of the
National Mining Associationin support of the legality of mountaintop removal.
In a case before the Supreme Court, Roberts argued on behalf of mining companies who wanted to use criminal contempt fines to force the end of a strike which had been ruled unlawful. The case, "
United Mine Workers of America v. Bagwell", 512 U.S. 821 ( 1994), ended in a ruling in favor of the unions, with the majority opinion authored by Justice Harry Blackmun. [http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=us&vol=512&invol=821]
The Los Angeles Times reports that Roberts was "instrumental" behind-the-scenes in working to get the Supreme Court to declare a Colorado state constitutional amendment unconstitutional in the case of "
Romer v. Evans". The amendment prohibited all legislative, executive and judicial action designed to protect homosexual persons from discrimination.
The Supreme Court, following the lead of Justice Kennedy, held that the amendment violated the equal protection clause of the federal Constitution. Roberts performed his work on the behalf of his law firm's pro bono department at Hogan and Hartson. Hogan and Hartson allow their employees to refuse help on pro bono cases if they find them "morally repugnant". At least one conservative group, [http://www.voanews.com/english/2005-08-10-voa22.cfm Public Advocate] had planned to oppose Robert's nomination because of this case.
Roberts has authored 49 opinions in his two years in the D.C. Circuit but has elicited only two dissents on his decisions, and on the many other cases he has heard in that time, he has authored only three dissenting opinions of his own. His past rulings that are most likely to be discussed in his upcoming confirmation hearing dealt with the following issues:
Fourth and Fifth Amendments
The D.C. Circuit case "Hedgepeth v. Washington Metro Authority", [http://pacer.cadc.uscourts.gov/docs/common/opinions/200410/03-7149a.pdf 284 F. Supp. 2d 145] , involved a twelve-year-old girl who was invited to incriminate herself as an illegal drug user, taken into custody, handcuffed, driven to police headquarters, booked, and fingerprinted because she violated a publicly-advertised
zero tolerance"no eating" policy in a Washington Metrostation by eating a single french fry. Roberts wrote for a 3-0 panel affirming a district court decision that dismissed the girl's complaint, which was predicated on the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, specifically the claim that an adult would have only received a citation for the same offense, while children must be detained until parents can be notified.
Roberts began his opinion by noting, "No one is very happy about the events that led to this litigation," and pointing out that the policies under which the girl was apprehended had since been changed. Because age discrimination is allowed under previous jurisprudence if there is any rational basis for it, only weak state interests were required to justify the policy. "Because parents and guardians play an essential role in that rehabilitative process, it is reasonable for the District to seek to ensure their participation, and the method chosen — detention until the parent is notified and retrieves the child — certainly does that, in a way issuing a citation might not." Roberts concluded that the age discrimination and detention in this case were constitutional, noting that "the question before us… is not whether these policies were a bad idea, but whether they violated the Fourth and Fifth Amendments to the Constitution.", language reminiscent of Justice
Potter Stewart's dissent in " Griswold v. Connecticut", in which Justice Stewart wrote, "We are not asked in this case to say whether we think this law is unwise, or even asinine. We are asked to hold that it violates the United States Constitution. And that, I cannot do."
Hamdan v. Rumsfeld", Roberts was part of a unanimous panel overturning the district court ruling and upholding military tribunals set up by the Bush administration for trying terrorism suspects known as enemy combatants. Circuit Judge A. Raymond Randolph, writing for the court, ruled that Hamdan, a driver for al-Qaedaleader Osama bin Laden[http://www.yementimes.com/article.shtml?i=712&p=local&a=5] , could be tried by a military court because (1) the military commission had the approval of the United States Congress; (2) the Third Geneva Conventionis a treaty between nations and as such it does not confer individual rights and remedies enforceable in U.S. courts; and (3) even if the Convention could be enforced in U.S. courts, it would not be of assistance to Hamdan at the time because, for a conflict such as the war against al-Qaeda (considered by the court as a separate war from that against Afghanistanitself) that is not between two countries, it guarantees only a certain standard of judicial procedure without speaking to the jurisdiction in which the prisoner must be tried. The court held open the possibility of judicial review of the results of the military commission after the current proceedings have ended. [http://pacer.cadc.uscourts.gov/docs/common/opinions/200507/04-5393a.pdf]
On the U.S. Court of Appeals, Roberts wrote a dissenting opinion regarding "Rancho Viejo, LLC v. Norton", [http://laws.lp.findlaw.com/dc/015373b.html 323 F.3d 1062] , a case involving the protection of a rare Californian toad under the
Endangered Species Act. When the court denied a rehearing en banc, [http://laws.lp.findlaw.com/dc/015373b.html 334 F.3d 1158] (D.C. Cir. 2003), Roberts dissented, arguing that the original opinion was wrongly decided because he found it inconsistent with " United States v. Lopez" and " United States v. Morrison" in that it focused on the effects of the regulation, rather than the taking of the toads themselves, on interstate commerce. In Roberts's view, the Commerce Clauseof the Constitution did not permit the government to regulate activity affecting what he called "a hapless toad" that "for reasons of its own lives its entire life in California." He said that reviewing the case could allow the court "alternative grounds for sustaining application of the Act that may be more consistent with Supreme Court precedent."
During his time on the Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Judge Roberts wrote opinions for 49 cases (as of 26 July 2005) including the following:
A complete list can be found at the end of this page under 'External links'.
Trivia concerning Roberts confirmation
Robert is the second sitting justice to have graduated from Harvard College (along with
David Souter) and the sixth sitting justice to attend Harvard Law School (Souter, Stephen Breyer, Antonin Scalia, and Anthony Kennedyall graduated from Harvard Law School, while Ruth Bader Ginsburgattended there for two years and transferred to Columbia Law School). He is the 109th justice to serve on the court, as well as the 17th Chief Justice.
With the addition of Roberts, the Supreme Court's membership had more
Roman Catholicswith four (Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Kennedy) than justices of other denominations. Upon the confirmation of Samuel Alitoin 2006, the Roman Catholics on the court numbered five, with two Protestant (Stevens and Souter) and two Jewish (Ginsburg and Breyer) justices.
During his confirmation hearings, Roberts testified, under oath, that his two favorite movies were " Doctor Zhivago " and "
North by Northwest".
ummary of cases argued as a private attorney
During his work at Hogan & Hartson, Roberts argued before several appellate courts and several cases before the Supreme Court:
White House documents
*"Supreme Court Nomination and Withdrawal Sent to the Senate" (September 6, 2005) [http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/09/20050906-2.html]
*"Supreme Court Nomination Sent to the Senate" (July 29, 2005) [http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/07/20050729-6.html]
*"President Nominates Judge Roberts to be Supreme Court Chief Justice" (September 5, 2005) [http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/09/20050905.html]
*"President Announces Judge John Roberts as Supreme Court Nominee" (July 19, 2005) [http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/07/20050719-7.html]
*"Appellate judge Roberts is Bush high-court pick." MSNBC. July 19, 2005. [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/8625492]
*Argetsinger, Amy, and Jo Becker. "The nominee as a young pragmatist: under Reagan, Roberts tackled tough issues." "Washington Post". July 22, 2005. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/21/AR2005072101782.html?nav=hcmodule]
*Barbash, Fred, et al: "Bush to nominate Judge John G. Roberts Jr." "Washington Post". July 19, 2005. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/19/AR2005071901426.html]
*Becker, Jo, and R. Jeffrey Smith. "Record of accomplishment—and some contradictions." "Washington Post". July 20, 2005. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/19/AR2005071902065.html]
*Bumuller, Elisabeth, and David Stout: "President chooses conservative judge as nominee to court." "New York Times". July 19, 2005. [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/19/politics/politicsspecial1/19cnd-judge.html?hp&ex=1121832000&en=856520306462d3af&ei=5094&partner=homepage]
*"Bush: Meeting with Roberts during recount wasn't political." Associated Press. July 23, 2005. [http://www.news-journalonline.com/NewsJournalOnline/News/Politics/Florida/03FloridaPOLF01072305.htm]
*Entous, Adam. "Bush picks conservative Roberts for Supreme Court." Reuters. July 19, 2005. [http://today.reuters.com/business/newsarticle.aspx?type=tnBusinessNews&storyID=nN19377424&imageid=&c
*Kallestad, Brent. "Roberts helped counsel Jeb Bush." Associated Press. July 21, 2005. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/21/AR2005072101961.html?nav=hcmodule]
*Lane, Charles. "Federalist affiliation misstated: Roberts does not belong to group." "Washington Post". July 21, 2005. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/20/AR2005072002431.html?nav=hcmodule]
*Lane, Charles. "Short record as judge is under a microscope." "Washington Post". July 21, 2005. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/20/AR2005072002322.html]
*Groppe, Maureen, and John Tuohy. "If you ask John where he's from, he says Indiana." "Indianapolis Star". July 20, 2005. [http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050720/NEWS02/507200476]
*McFeatters, Ann. "John G. Roberts Jr. is Bush choice for Supreme Court." "Pittsburgh Post-Gazette". July 19, 2005. [http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05200/540299.stm]
*Riechmann, Deb. "Federal judge Roberts is Bush's choice." Associated Press. July 20, 2005. [http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,1280,-5152882,00.html]
*"Roberts: A smart, self-effacing 'Eagle Scout.'" Associated Press. July 20, 2005. [http://www.cnn.com/2005/LAW/07/20/roberts.profile.ap/]
*"Who Is John G. Roberts Jr.?" ABC News. July 19, 2005. [http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/news%5C071905_nw_john_roberts.html]
*"President announces Judge John Roberts as Supreme Court nominee." Office of the Press Secretary, Executive Office of the President. [http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/07/20050719-7.html]
*"Roberts, John G., Jr." Federal Judicial Center. [http://air.fjc.gov/servlet/tGetInfo?jid=3001]
*"John G. Roberts biography." Office of Legal Policy, U.S. Department of Justice. [http://www.usdoj.gov/olp/robertsbio.htm ]
*"Biographical Sketches of the Judges of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit." United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. [http://www.cadc.uscourts.gov/internet/internet.nsf/Content/Stub+-+Biographical+Sketches+of+the+Judges+of+U.S.+Court+of+Appeals+for+the+DC+Circuit]
*John G. Roberts Questionnaire for Appeals Court Confirmation Hearing (p. 297-339) and responses to Questions from Various Senators (p. 443-461) [http://www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate/pdf/108hrg/89324.pdf] (large PDF file)
*Coffin, Shannen W. "Meet John Roberts: The President Makes the Best Choice." "National Review Online". July 19, 2005. [http://www.nationalreview.com/coffin/coffin200507192142.asp]
*"Former Hogan & Hartson partner nominated for the U.S. Supreme Court." Hogan & Hartson, LLP. July 20, 2005. [http://www.hhlaw.com/site/news.aspx?Show=538]
*Goldman, Jerry. "John G. Roberts, Jr."
*"John G. Roberts, Jr. Fact Sheet" La Lumiere School. [http://www.lalumiere.org/about/roberts.htm]
*"John G. Roberts federal campaign contributions." Newsmeat.com. July 19, 2005. [http://www.newsmeat.com/judiciary_political_donations/John_G_Roberts.php]
*"Progress for America: Support for the Confirmation of John G. Roberts" [http://judgeroberts.com/]
*"Report of the Alliance for Justice: Opposition to the Confirmation of John G. Roberts to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit."
Alliance for Justice. [http://www.independentjudiciary.com/resources/docs/John_Roberts_Report.pdf] (PDF file)
*"Wexler: Bush's Supreme Court pick insulting to disenfranchised Florida voters." Office of Representative Robert Wexler. July 20, 2005. [http://www.wexler.house.gov/pressreleases/072005.htm]
* cite news| publisher=Associated Press| title=Roberts Questioned Lifetime Appointments| date=
* [http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/26jan20041230/www.access.gpo.gov/congress/senate/pdf/108hrg/92548.pdf Transcript of Senate Judiciary Committee hearing] on the nomination of John Roberts to the D.C. circuit (Roberts Q&A on pages 17-79, [http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=108_senate_hearings&docid=f:92548.wais plain text available here] )
* [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/20/politics/politicsspecial1/20judge.html Lewis, Neil A. "An Ultimate Capital Insider." New York Times. July 20, 2005]
* [http://pview.findlaw.com/view/2581160_1 FindLaw Lawyer Profile]
* [http://www.anastigmatix.net/reference/JGR.html Complete list of Circuit Judge Roberts's opinions for the DC Circuit (last updated 26 July 2005)]
* [http://www.law.umich.edu/library/news/topics/roberts/robertsindex.htm University of Michigan Law Library fulltext links]
* [http://www.fed-soc.org/ Federalist Society]
* [http://www.rcfp.org/news/documents/20050721-robertsrec.html A summary of media-related cases handled by Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr.] from The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, July 21, 2005
* [http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/law/july-dec05/roberts_7-22.html Experts Analyze Supreme Court Nominee John Roberts' Legal Record]
* Petition and advocacy sites in support of Roberts' confirmation:
** [http://www.afa.net/petitions/confirmroberts.asp American Family Association]
** [https://www.aclj.org/Petition/default.aspx?SC=3034&AC=1 American Center for Law & Justice]
* Petition and advocacy sites opposed to Roberts' confirmation:
** [http://democrats.senate.gov/askroberts/ democrats.senate.gov/AskRoberts]
** [http://petition.savethecourt.org/ People for the American Way]
** [http://political.moveon.org/roberts/info.html MoveOn.org]
** [http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/507595787 NARAL]
* Statement on Future of Privacy
** [http://www.epic.org/privacy/justices/roberts/0905letter.pdf EPIC]
* [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/19/AR2005071900870.html Profile of the Nominee] - "
The Washington Post"
* [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/09/11/politics/politicsspecial1/11questions.html?ex=1284091200&en=abf98b4ef43253a8&ei=5090 A Senate Hearing Primer] - "
The New York Times"
* [http://www.nytimes.com/2005/09/13/politics/politicsspecial1/roberts_textindex.html Video and Transcripts From the Roberts Confirmation Hearings] - "
The New York Times"
* [http://www.scotusblog.com/movabletype/ SCOTUSblog]
* [http://www.sctnomination.com/blog/ Supreme Court Nomination Blog]
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