Feinstein Drops Hints on Alito Questions

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D.-Calif.), the self-proclaimed representative for all American women on the Judiciary Committee, just outlined the interests she plans to pursue during the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito.

Feinstein’s bulleted list, in her own words, includes the following:

  • A woman’s right to choose;
  • One man one vote;
  • Regulation of firearms;
  • Expansion of Executive Power beyond the law;
  • Civil rights;
  • Environment; and
  • The separation of Church and State.

Feinstein justifies her interest by citing Alito’s past writings in these areas: “Because in 1985 he expressed his personal legal views on many of the above subjects, it is relevant to see if Judge Alito still holds those views today.”

It’s not surprising that abortion is listed atop this list — that was also Feinstein’s concern during the confirmation hearings for Chief Justice John Roberts. It was at that time that Feinstein, the lone woman on the committee, proclaimed herself the representative of all women.

Also in her press release, Feinstein said:

“This is probably the most important appointment in more than a decade because it carries with it the balance of the Court on many critical issues.  Justice O’Connor had a very unique role in that she often was the voice of moderation. Therefore Judge Alito’s views are very important.
“If a Supreme Court appointment was just a mathematical computation of the law, it could be done by computer. But the fact of the matter is that questions of law are often influenced by individual’s judicial philosophy and temperament."