Governor Jerry Brown has nominated Berkeley Law professor Goodwin Liu for a position on the California Supreme Court. Republican senators led a successful filibuster of Liu’s appointment to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals back in May. As CNN reported, “Liu was the first of President Barack Obama’s judicial picks to be successfully filibustered.” The Wall Street Journal called the California Supreme Court nomination “a nice consolation prize.”
But Liu’s radical views could even be too much for California. At National Review, Hans A. von Spakovsky writes,
“He is of the opinion that if you believe in the basic precepts of American liberty and economic freedom, you are ideologically suspect and unfit to sit on the Supreme Court. In 2005 he wrote an article for Bloomberg in which he criticized Supreme Court judicial nominee John G. Roberts, Jr., for belonging to organizations that promote ‘free enterprise, private ownership of property, and limited government.’ According to Liu, these are ‘code words for an ideological agenda hostile to environmental, workplace, and consumer protections.’”
Aside from Liu’s misguided attacks on the views of Chief Justice Roberts, his explanations of his own views are rightfully criticized by Edward Whelan at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.
“Beyond such indirect evidence, we have the nominee’s own lengthy confession of his views — his self-indictment. Take, for example, the book, pleadingly titled Keeping Faith with the Constitution, in which Liu and his two fellow-lefty co-authors try to slap the deceptive label ‘constitutional fidelity’ on the shoddy ‘living Constitution’ gambit that proponents of liberal judicial activism have used to redefine the Constitution to mean whatever they want it to mean. In malleable terms that would make Bill Clinton a model of marital fidelity, Liu explains, ‘What we mean by fidelity is that the Constitution should be interpreted in ways that adapt its principles and its text to the challenges and conditions of our society in every succeeding generation.’ Liu is able to attack originalism — the genuinely faithful method of constitutional interpretation — only by misrepresentations and distortions.”
Even Democratic senators opposed Liu’s nomination to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Senator Jim Webb of Virginia said that if Liu’s nomination made it to a vote, he would vote Nay. Speaking on why he would oppose Liu, Webb cited the professor’s “complete lack of practical legal experience” and his history of “intemperate politically charged statements.” Watch Webb in the video below. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTUcY9RszQc
The people of California have been given a judge the nation didn’t want. Clearly the move is to put Professor Liu on ice for potential future nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court. If that happens, the Senate should make the same decision as it did this year by rejecting the radical Mr. Liu.