Note to Anti-Alito Groups: Please Stop Your Whining

As if we didn’t get enough Alito-bashing during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings, we now have to again put up with all the left-wing anti-Alito groups spouting off about the threat he poses to all the "rights" these groups protect. Expect more of the same later this week when he comes up for a vote before the full Senate.

Here’s a sampling of some of the best (or worse, depending how you look at it).

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU):

The American Civil Liberties Union today expressed its disappointment with the party-line approval of the nomination of Judge Samuel A. Alito, Jr. to be the new associate justice on the Supreme Court, and urged the full Senate to reject his confirmation.

The following can be attributed to Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

"The American people deserve a nominee whose loyalty lies with the Constitution and not the whims of the president. Judge Alito’s record has shown an alarming and undue deference to executive powers. His legal and judicial philosophy shows a jurist who is all too willing to acquiesce to the harmful, and possibly illegal, demands of an executive branch set on extending its reach and power.

"At a time when the president and his surrogates are claiming unprecedented authority to break the rules, the nation’s highest court must uphold our fundamental civil liberties and freedoms, and recognize and sustain the balance of powers essential to our government. Judge Alito would upset that balance, to the detriment of our personal freedoms and privacy."

Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice:

In the wake of the strong Senate Judiciary Committee opposition against the nomination of Samuel A. Alito, Jr., the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC) calls on the full Senate to reject his confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court. We applaud the senators who opposed this nominee, who poses a direct threat to women’s health and safety.

Christian, Jewish, and Unitarian Universalist clergy who are members of the RCRC Clergy for Choice Network will be in Washington January 25 to visit their Senators and express their opposition to this nomination. Pro-choice ministers and rabbis are arriving from Connecticut, Maine, New Jersey, New Mexico, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.

Samuel Alito’s record and testimony leave no doubt that the court will shift to the extreme right if he is confirmed, threatening our hard-won rights and liberties for generations to come. We ask all people of faith who cherish our established constitutional rights to take a stand, said Rev. Carlton W. Veazey, RCRC President and CEO.

National Women’s Law Center:

Following is a statement by Marcia D. Greenberger, Co-President of the National Women’s Law Center, about the Senate Judiciary Committee vote on the confirmation of Samuel Alito to the US Supreme Court.

"The large number of senators who voted no understand that Samuel Alito would likely eviscerate core legal rights for women and shift the Court in a dangerous direction. His confirmation would jeopardize a women’s right to choose, undermine Congress’s power to protect the public welfare in areas like family leave, and make it harder for victims of sexual harassment and other forms of discrimination to have a fair shake in court.

"Alito’s nomination now moves to the full Senate where it must be rejected. This vote is not about party labels. Senators who care about women’s rights – and certainly about a right to choose – should look at how Judge Alito’s confirmation would affect people’s lives and they should vote no. The risks are simply too great to confirm Judge Alito. The Senate’s decision on Samuel Alito will have profound consequences for women for the next two generations and possibly more."

Leadership Conference on Civil Rights:

Statement of Wade Henderson, Executive Director of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights

The civil rights community applauds the eight senators who stood up to protect Americans’ individual rights and freedoms by voting to oppose the nomination of Samuel Alito to the United States Supreme Court. We are troubled but, unfortunately, not surprised – by the Senate Judiciary Committee’s party line vote.

Throughout the hearing process, Republican Committee members’ reluctance to challenge Alito’s disturbing civil rights record sent a clear message: they have little interest in, or commitment to, protecting hard-won civil rights gains and ensuring the proper application of those civil rights laws.  

Today, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights speaking on behalf of those whose rights and freedoms are jeopardized by the prospect of a “Justice” Alito has its own clear message: A vote for Alito is a vote to reverse 40 years of civil rights progress.  A vote against Alito is a vote in favor of protecting everyone’s rights and freedoms.

We call on senators to accept nothing less than a full, vigorous, and extended debate of Alito’s troubling record and to vote “no” on his confirmation.

National Partnership for Women & Families:

"Today’s Senate Judiciary Committee vote is a setback for all Americans who care about protecting our right to privacy, promoting justice and equality, and continuing the progress of recent decades.

Judge Alito failed to provide meaningful answers to serious questions about his record. He repeatedly mischaracterized the legislative history of the Family & Medical Leave Act, refused to give basic assurances that he will respect precedent on reproductive choice, and failed to explain numerous statements and rulings hostile to our rights and freedoms. As a result, Judge Alito does not deserve to be confirmed.

We commend every Senator who voted ‘no’ this morning, and urge all their colleagues to put the interests of the nation above partisan allegiances by voting ‘no’ when Judge Alito’s nomination comes to the floor.

With our rights hanging by a thread, and the balance on the Supreme Court at stake, Samuel Alito is a risk that America simply cannot afford to take."