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The Case For A Real Liberal On The Court

Publication Date: 
April 12, 2010
The American Prospect Blog
Scott Lemieux

Professor Pamela Karlan is mentioned in this editorial piece on why President Obama should select a progressive nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court. Scott Lemieux of The American Prospect writes:

The pending resignation of Justice John Paul Stevens gives Barack Obama the chance to make his second appointment to the Supreme Court. It also represents what is likely to be his best chance to provide a foothold for a strong liberal presence on the Court to represent the reactionary foursome of Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts, and Samuel Alito.

Here are three crucial reasons why Obama should nominate a sophisticated and tough-minded progressive along the lines of Stanford law professor Pamela Karlan, Legal Adviser of the Department of State Harold Koh, or Judge Diane Wood of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals:


It might be objected at this point that a nominee like Karlan or Koh might compel a Republican filibuster. The proper answer to this is, so what? First of all, in the (probably unlikely) possibility that a filibuster of a nominee holds, the result would be the eventual confirmation of a more moderate nominee. If Obama preemptively nominates a moderate nominee, the result would be … exactly the same. In the worst-case scenario, progressives are no worse off.