Dr. Coburn's Statement on Supreme Court Vacancy
U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today released the following statement regarding the resignation of Supreme Court Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.
"I would hope that President Bush's nominee will swing the court back toward the Constitution and away from an era of self-indulgent judicial activism. Justice O'Connor's replacement should apply the law, not attempt to re-write it from the bench," Dr. Coburn said.
"Both sides in this debate should debate the merits of the president's nominee with civility and respect. The president's nominee should receive an up-or-down vote. If a few Senators refuse to grant the president and his nominee that courtesy I would encourage Majority Leader Frist to restore the Senate's 214-year-old precedent that gave judges the basic right of vote," Dr. Coburn said.
"The political stakes for the far left could not be higher. Liberal academia and interest groups are frightened that President Bush's judicial nominees may limit their ability to enact policies through the courts that have failed at the ballot box. Some of those groups will stop at nothing to vilify anyone who threatens their grip on power," Dr. Coburn said.
"Many on the left espouse judicial diversity as long as a judicial nominee expresses an opinion with which they agree. The Senate should set its partisan preferences aside and support any nominee of good character who respects the Constitution, is intelligent, unbiased and committed to equal justice under the law," Dr. Coburn said.