McCain Outlines Judicial Philosophy, Slams Obama


From CBS News' Andante Higgins:

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- John McCain said he would nominate Supreme Court justices in the mold of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito. "My nominees will understand that there are clear limits to the scope of judicial power, and clear limits to the scope of federal power," McCain said. "They will do their work with impartiality, honor, and humanity, with an alert conscience, immune to flattery and fashionable theory, and faithful in all things to the Constitution of the United States."

McCain is speaking on the trail about his judicial philosophy, highlighting his participation in the "gang of 14," where seven Democrats and seven Republicans got together and helped moved Justice Roberts through the nomination process. "Over the years, we have all seen the dreary rituals that now pass for advice and consent in the confirmation of nominees to our Supreme Court. We've seen and heard the shabby treatment accorded to nominees, the caricature and code words shouted or whispered, the twenty-minute questions and two-minute answers," McCain said. "No tactic of abuse or delay is out of bounds, until the nominee is declared 'in trouble' and the spouse is in tears."

McCain maintains that he will not nominate judges who legislate from the bench and uses this reasoning to go after Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. "Senators Obama and Clinton have very different ideas from my own," McCain said. "They are both lawyers themselves, and don't seem to mind at all when fundamental questions of social policy are preemptively decided by judges instead of by the people and their elected representatives."

He also accused Obama of choosing partisan politics over working together during nomination processes. "Senator Obama in particular likes to talk up his background as a lecturer on law, and also as someone who can work across the aisle to get things done. But when Judge Roberts was nominated, it seemed to bring out more the lecturer in Senator Obama than it did the guy who can get things done," McCaid said. "He went right along with the partisan crowd, and was among the 22 senators to vote against this highly qualified nominee."