Rehnquist Full Coverage


Some samples of Reason stories on the late Chief Justice William Rehnquist and the Supreme Court:

Nick Gillespie and Mark Tushnet discuss Rehnquist's legacy.

Jesse Walker and David Garrow discuss senile justices.

Andrew Napolitano, Nadine Strossen, Mike Godwin, and other luminaries choose their favorite nominees to fill the vacancies.

Damon W. Root makes the case for activist judges.

Cathy Young looks at the conservative wing's effort to buckle up the Fourth Amendment.

William L. Anderson and Candice E. Jackson try to cut through the expanding mass of federal laws.

Richard A. Epstein and Mike Godwin debate Bush v. Gore.

Jacob Sullum considers who the real libertarians are, and says Up with downward departures.

Complete set of Supreme Court figurines available here.

Rehnquist bobblehead here.

NEXT: We've Got It Under Control, Cont'd

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  1. I know there are several different editions of the New York Times printed every day.

    Did any of them have Rehnquist coverage today?

    Mine (purchased in upstate NY) definitely did NOT have any.


    "All the news that's fit to print! (Eventually...)"

  2. "I know" should be "I suspect"

  3. Adam,
    I don't know if there are more than two editions but you can see the front page images of the national and NY city editions. It was the headline in the city edition.

  4. Mark my words: Emilo Garza will get the nomination, and go straight to Chief Justice.

    Think about it. Makes perfect sense.

    You heard it here first.

  5. Garza makes perfect sense as an associate jusitcew, but not chief. Bush will need to pay off his base somewhere along the line- Scalia to chief does it nicely. Garza or one of the Ediths (Clement or Jones) as the new associate alongisde Roberts. Perfect! Then, when Stevens decides to pull out next year, Bush will have had more effect on the Court than any other president since I don't know when. Goodness.

  6. Panurge, words marked. I'm gonna put my money on the long-shot Karen LeCraft Henderson. Why, because I have not heard her name mentioned to be shortlisted before. So what odds can I get, 50:1?

  7. I doubt Stevens will pull out while Bush is in office.

    I heard that one of the Ediths serves on the circuit that covers New Orleans. Is this true? If so, they could probably find a way to use the tragedy to hasten her confirmation, which means that Bush will probably do it.

    Historically, most Chief Justices have come from outside the Supreme Court. Elevating an Associate Justice to Chief has been less frequent than bringing in an outsider, as I understand it. Given the difficulties that will surround ANY confirmation process, 2 nominations rather than 3 would make sense.

    Then again, Presidents don't always do things that make sense.

    (And before somebody gets all angry because I said the President doesn't always do things that make sense without specifcally bashing some Democrats, please make note of the plural that I used.)

  8. I doubt Stevens will pull out while Bush is in office.

    By all appearances, Rehnquist didn't want to pull out either. As recently as last November, no one was actively talking about replacing Rehnquist. Yet, here we are.

  9. I think Stevens comes from the same gene pool as Jack LaLagne, even if he doesn't work out as much. He'll be in there for another three and a half years.

    So Emilio (sorry about the spelling error earlier) Garza makes sense.

    1) He's a strong conservative. Pro-death penalty, critical of abortion and environmental regulations, supportive of states' rights, etc.

    2) He's from Texas.

    3) He's Hispanic. Gonzales might have a shot, but he would have to exempt himself from too many cases.

    4) He's good looking. I know this sounds horribly superfical, but let's face it, this helps.

    5) Scalia might have a hard time building a consensus as CJ, and is viewed skeptically (at best) by business conservatives. Ironically, some business conservatives have been pushing for Stephen Breyer as CJ, since he has stronger knowledge of business-related issues than anyone else on the court, but I seriously doubt Bush would pick him. Still, if you're thinking about putting your money down on a long shot that would pay out a high return...

  10. panurge-

    I didn't know that about Breyer and business groups. But I have my own crazy theory: Bush might pick some guy who makes Scalia look moderate, and then try to balance it out by elevating a more liberal Justice to Chief. I guess Breyer would fit that bill, but my theory is that if he goes down that road he'll engage in some Daddy-worship and pick Souter.

  11. I had actually been hoping at one point in time that when Rehnquist left the court that Bush might balance a new conservative appointment by elevating Kennedy to chief justice. However, since Kennedy has been the target of a non-stop conservative smearbund for the last year that seems highly unlikely now.

  12. thoreau-

    Souter? Lord no. Conservatives, particularly those who will defend Bush no matter what, hate him with a psychopathic fury. They consider him a traitor.

    Sadly, they feel the same way about Kennedy. Kelo and Raich nothwithstanding, he's shown pretty sound judgement throughout most of his career on the court. He's made mistakes, but he's pretty levelheaded.

  13. Okay, looks like I was half wrong. Bush has nominated John Roberts as Chief Justice. Which kind of makes sense, given that Roberts clerked for Rehnquist.

    I still think Garza is getting the open spot, though.

  14. Is it just me, or does nominating someone with just two years of experience as a judge to be Chief Justice of the Supreme Court strike anyone else as unwise?

    I know, I know, there have been Chief Justices who were never judges at all, but it's not like John Roberts is a former President, either.

  15. I'm sort of with joe here. I think Roberts' resume is more than sufficient to merit a seat on the Supreme Court. (We can talk some other time about his opinions and philosophy and whatnot and whether that matters, yadda yadda, but there's no denying that as far as the resume is concerned he's golden.)

    But administrative responsibility for the federal court system? And building consensus among 9 strong-minded judges in the court of final appeal?

    I'm not saying he should have picked a current Justice, but maybe somebody with more experience in the federal courts. In my own professional area, there are brilliant people who earn prestigious appointments on their merits, but they generally aren't elevated to jobs like Institute Director, or Dean of Sciences, or Vice President For Corporate R&D until they've spent some time in the system.

  16. Doh! Forgot to remove that last part from my handle.

  17. "Bush has nominated John Roberts as Chief Justice."

    Yes, I just discharged blood from my eyeballs when I saw that headline on MSN.

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