November 18, 2007
The New York Times reports: “According to roughly a dozen recent studies, executions save lives. For each inmate put to death, the studies say, 3 to 18 murders are prevented. The effect is most pronounced, according to some studies, in Texas and other states that execute condemned inmates relatively often and relatively quickly.”
Rising Crime Trend Confirmed
September 24, 2007
Violent crime rose nearly 2 percent last year, the FBI reported in nationwide data that show a slightly higher increase than expected.
Schumer to Fight New Bush High Court Picks
July 27, 2007
New York Sen. Charles E. Schumer, a powerful member of the Democratic leadership, says the Senate should not confirm another U.S. Supreme Court nominee under President Bush “except in extraordinary circumstances.”
Common Sense on Capital Punishment
June 27, 2007
Fred Thompson writes: “Our country seems to be able to come to the right conclusions over time, even when we’re being told over and over again that we're wrong. When I say the right conclusions, by the way, I mean conclusions supported by honest research and real evidence. I’ve got a good example — capital punishment.”
Death as Deterrent
June 19, 2007
John Lott comments: “The media is a bit Johnny-come-lately in recognizing all the research that has been done on the death penalty over the last decade, with nine of the 12 refereed academic studies by economists finding that the death penalty saves lives.”
Studies: Death Penalty Discourages Crime
June 11, 2007
The Associated Press finally takes notice of “a series of academic studies over the last half-dozen years that claim to settle a once hotly debated argument — whether the death penalty acts as a deterrent to murder. The analyses say yes. They count between three and 18 lives that would be saved by the execution of each convicted killer.”
FBI: Violent Crime Still Increasing
May 30, 2007
Violent crime kept climbing in 2006, a top FBI official says, previewing a report detailing nationwide increases in murders, robberies and other felonies for a second straight year.
Big-city Murders Jump More Than 10 Percent
March 8, 2007
The murder rate jumped by more than 10 percent among dozens of large U.S. cities since 2004, a study shows in the latest sign of the end of a national lull in violent crime.
Feds Outline Plan to Combat Upturn in Violent Crime
January 16, 2007
Bush administration officials are scrambling to demonstrate that they’re addressing sharp jumps in violent crime in some cities, in an attempt to reclaim a traditionally Republican issue amid criticism from some Democrats, mayors and police chiefs.
Rise in Violent Crime a National Problem
January 10, 2007
A mini-crime wave may be in the making, experts say, as homicides balloon in places such as Newark and Philadelphia and robbery rates spike in Omaha, Neb., Houston and elsewhere.
Vetoing the Next Alito
November 20, 2006
The New York Observer’s Jason Horowitz writes: “From now on, all the President’s judicial appointments will need to meet the requirements of [New York Senator Chuck] Schumer.”
The ‘Good Judge’
November 13, 2006
Weekly Standard Publisher Terry Eastland marks Justice Antonin Scalia’s 20th year on the Supreme Court: “Someday it may be said of Scalia that he was the justice who pioneered the effort to put the text back into statutory law, and the Constitution back into constitutional law.”
Judicial Nominations in Doubt
November 12, 2006
The New York Times reports: “The impending Democratic takeover of the Senate, lawmakers and administration officials agree, will produce a vast change in an area that has produced some of the sharpest partisan battles in recent years: President Bush’s effort to shape the federal bench with conservative judicial nominees.”
Scalia Rips Judges on Abortion, Suicide
October 21, 2006
Justice Antonin Scalia, during a talk on the judiciary sponsored by the National Italian American Foundation, says deeply controversial issues like abortion and suicide rights have nothing to do with the Constitution, and unelected judges too often choose to find new rights at the expense of the democratic process.
Cities See Jump in Murders, Robberies
October 12, 2006
USA TODAY reports: “Less than a month after the FBI reported that violent crime rates rose across the nation in 2005, there is fresh evidence that homicides and robberies are continuing to increase in dozens of cities.”
Terrorism and Crime
September 26, 2006
Thomas Sowell writes: “It is largely the same people who have for years been more protective of criminals than of their victims who are now more protective of captured terrorists than of those who are their targets.”
Murders in U.S. Rise Nearly 5 Percent
September 11, 2006
The rates of homicide and firearm violence jumped up in 2005, ending a decadelong decline, according to a new U.S. Justice Department report that reinforces recent warnings by law-enforcement officials.
Cities Under the Gun
September 3, 2006
David Kennedy, director of the Center for Crime Prevention and Control at CUNY's John Jay College of Criminal Justice, writes: “Not long ago, the United States was declaring ‘mission accomplished’ on crime: Homicide rates were plunging, the crack epidemic was over, the broken windows were fixed. Now, preliminary FBI statistics show that homicides rose nearly 5 percent in 2005, and news from around the country suggests that 2006 is looking worse.”
The Left and Crime
August 23, 2006
Thomas Sowell writes: “A new book on crime in Britain shows what happens when the mindset of the left prevails throughout the criminal justice system. That book is titled A Land Fit for Criminals by David Fraser. Within living memory, Britain was one of the most law-abiding nations on the face of the earth. When Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew visited London right after World War II, he was so impressed with the honesty of the British and their respect for law and order that he returned home determined to make Singapore the same way. Today it is Singapore that is one of the most law-abiding nations in the world while Britain’s crime rate has risen to the point where, for the first time, it now exceeds the crime rate in the United States.”
End of a Supreme Court Blunder?
August 21, 2006
William Tucker, noting that the Supreme Court appears to be just one vote away from junking the exclusionary rule, writes in the Weekly Standard that the rule has engendered a “philosophy of policing [that] finally came home to roost in August 2001, when Minnesota FBI agents arrested Zacarias Moussaoui, an alien with an expired visa who had aroused the suspicion of flight school instructors in Minneapolis because he wanted to learn to fly a commercial jet without having any interest in how to take off or land. Dutifully following established procedures, the Minneapolis agents applied to Washington for a search warrant to look into his computer. FBI lawyers there turned down the request. There was no ‘probable cause’ for investigating any further. All they had was a suspicious guy with an expired visa taking flight lessons. After forty years of playing Russian roulette with the American public, the criminal justice system finally hit a loaded chamber.”
Republicans Not Capitalizing on Judge Issue
July 27, 2006
Columnist Robert Novak reports on a recent flurry of White House judicial nominations, and comments that “from the Republican standpoint in 2006 midterm elections, it looks like too little, too late.”
Why Judges Shouldn't ‘Split the Difference’
July 2, 2006
Columnist George F. Will predicts: “Eventually, the public will notice, and recoil against, courts supplanting democratic institutions as arbitrators of our differences.”
The Supreme Court v. the Constitution
Michael M. Uhlmann argues in the Claremont Review of Books that “the modern Court’s presumption about the nature and scope of its powers would shock the authors of the original Constitution and the 14th Amendment, not to mention the overwhelming majority of justices who ever served.”
Violent Crime Up for 1st Time in 5 Years
June 12, 2006
Murders, robberies and aggravated assaults in the United States increased last year, spurring an overall rise in violent crime for the first time since 2001, according to FBI data.
A Ban We Don’t (Yet) Need
June 4, 2006
Columnist Charles Krauthammer argues: “The solution to judicial overreaching is to change the judiciary, not to undo every act of judicial arrogance with a policy-specific constitutional amendment. Where does it end? Yesterday it was school busing and abortion. Today it is flag-burning and gay marriage.”
Ripples From Two Court Choices
June 4, 2006
Columnist George F. Will writes that the addition of Samuel F. Alito to the Supreme Court has enabled it to reach a decision that resists a lower court’s tendency to pull federal judges “even more deeply than they already are into supervising American life.”
Can Federalism Solve America’s Culture War?
April 26, 2006
The Claremont Institute’s Richard Samuelson writes: “Can states’ rights end the culture war? Commentators from David Brooks to Andrew Sullivan to David Gelernter believe that it can.”
Bowing to Precedent
April 17, 2006
Noting that “35 years of Republican domination of the Court has not resulted in the overruling of a single revolutionary Warren Court decision,” University of Colorado law professor Robert F. Nagel argues that a decent respect for the Constitution should cause the Supreme Court to reconsider some past decisions.
Charles Pickering on Amending the Constitution
Retired U.S. Judge Charles Pickering says: “It’s only been in the last 30 years that those who have a liberal philosophy say that the Constitution is too sacred to be amended and it is too difficult and too cumbersome to do so when it wasn’t too cumbersome for 170 years. They still don’t think it’s too sacred for judges to amend it or change it. But to me it’s the height of arrogance to say that we’ve got to have 5 super legislators sitting on the bench changing the Constitution. That’s not democratic. It turns the principle of, ‘We the people,’ upside down. It turns it on its head.”
Justice Ginsburg and ‘[Human]kind’
March 15, 2006
Power Line blogger John Hinderaker critiques a recent speech by Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg: “The real issue here is: what is the Constitution? Justice Scalia has famously noted that the Constitution is a legal document which, like all legal documents, says some things and does not say others. In Justice Ginsburg's view the Constitution is, on the contrary, a roving charter for nine individuals to decide what ‘basic fairness’ requires. It should hardly be necessary to point out that the former understanding, which was universal until quite recently, is a charter of freedom, inasmuch as the people's representatives can vote on amendments. Conversely, the ‘basic fairness’ approach is a form of tyranny in which a small elite can impose its policy preferences on the rest of us.”
Scalia Disses ‘Living Constitution’ Idea
March 13, 2006
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia observes: “The Constitution is not an organism. It is a legal document.”
The Constitution: Dead or Alive?
February 22, 2006
NRO Editor at Large Jonah Goldberg writes: “The living Constitution, which has performed innumerable feats of jurisprudential prestidigitation, has accomplished a miraculous new trick during the national debate over NSA surveillance. It faked its own death.”
January 28, 2006
World Magazine publisher Joel Belz, commenting on how abortion is handled during judicial confirmation hearings, asks, “How did we get to the place where one side in a great national debate has the right to be open about its position while the other side is expected not just to be circumspect but altogether silent?”
Lords of the Realm
January 16, 2006
Jeffrey Toobin writes in The New Yorker that Supreme Court pronouncements are “invariably political in nature, rather than strictly legal,” and he observes that the justices, “guided only by the majestic generalities of the Constitution, and the malleable (and sometimes disposable) precedents of the Court itself, enjoy a degree of authority and freedom of action that is without parallel in our system of government.”
The American Enterprise Institute’s Christopher DeMuth laments the death of small government and the current state of constitutional law.
Alito and Abortion: Let the Debate Commence!
December 14, 2005
Oglethorpe University Professor Joseph Knippenberg writes in The American Enterprise Online that judicial confirmation hearings offer “the only conceivable occasion for a national debate over Constitutional jurisprudence.”
O’Connor Fires Back
November 28, 2005
Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, speaking to the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers in Washington, D.C., gave what Legal Times writer Tony Mauro calls “a rip-snorting defense of judicial independence.”
Precedent and the Constitution
November 17, 2005
Legal scholar Ronald Cass writes: “Claims to respect precedent cannot be taken seriously if the sources of serious constitutional interpretation are thrown aside whenever they yield inconvenient results.”
Against Judicial Imperialism
November 10, 2005
White House adviser Karl Rove tells members of the Federalist Society: “It is clear today that many ordinary men and women — non-lawyers — believe our courts are in crisis. And their concerns are well-grounded.”
Let the Great Debate Begin
November 1, 2005
Washington Post columnist George F. Will writes: “Our democracy inescapably functions under some degree of judicial supervision. The nation has long needed a serious debate about the proper nature of that supervision. And the president needed both a chance to demonstrate his seriousness and an occasion to challenge his Democratic critics to demonstrate theirs in a momentous battle on terrain of his choosing. The Alito nomination begins that debate.”
Memo to Demos: Be Afraid
October 29, 2005
Columnist Amy White writes that as a result of the Harriet Miers battle, “the Republican Party now understands they do not own conservatives — conservatives own them.”
Conservative Revolt Long in the Making
October 18, 2005
Columnist Bruce Bartlett writes: “The White House appears to have been truly blindsided by the vehemently negative response from conservative intellectuals to the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. In truth, this is a revolt that has been long in the making.”
‘These results are simply scary’
September 30, 2005
More than half of Americans are angry and disappointed with the nation’s judiciary, a new survey done for the ABA Journal eReport shows. “These results are simply scary,” says one law professor.
The Court's Progress
September 21, 2005
Weekly Standard executive editor Fred Barnes writes that creating a conservative majority on the Supreme Court is a task which has eluded every postwar Republican president, so far.
Expanding Rights vs. Protecting Rights
September 19, 2005
Writing in The Daily Standard, Daveed Gartenstein-Ross argues that the judicial branch should not be deciding our culture wars.
Summer 2005 Claremont Review of Books
John C. Eastman writes in a review of Ken Foskett's Judging Thomas: The Life and Times of Clarence Thomas that Justice Thomas's jurisprudential philosophy is more in line with the principles of our nation's founders, and hence with the Constitution they framed, than any other sitting Justice's is.
Roe v. Roberts
September 16, 2005