Favorite Emerges for Supreme Court Pick

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Posted with permission from PolicyinPractice.org and the law firm, Carpenter Lipps & Leland LLP

Preeminent Constitutional law scholar and Dean of the UC-Irvine School of Law Erwin Chemerinsky recently sat down with The New Republic to share his thoughts on Obama’s first appointment to the Supreme Court, discussing whether or not there is such a thing as a neutral judge, and defending Obama’s stated belief that he should appoint a judge willing and capable of considering the law in the context of everyday people’s lives.

Among those judges most likely to be chosen, three finalists appear to have emerged: Diane Wood, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

Wood and Sotomayor are both U.S. Appeals Court judges, while Kagan–the former dean of Harvard Law School–currently serves as Solicitor General.

Of the trio, Wood has received the most buzz of late, receiving a favorable review from the influential legal journalist Jeffrey Rosen, a Yale Law grad in his own right. Furthermore, Wood is believed to have just interviewed with Obama in Washington. As ABC News reported, Wood shirked her teaching duties at Chicago Law School unannounced, presumbly to attend a law conference at Georgetown. It is believed, then, that Wood was in fact in Washington to interview for the job.

In fact, ABC believes that Wood has become the favorite:

Sources tell me Obama has not decided whom he will choose. But of the three, Wood comes closest to meeting the criteria he has laid out in a justice. She could be his home run pick: She brings the intellectual heft and collegiality that would command respect on the Supreme Court, along with the life experiences that Obama has indicated he wants in his nominee. What’s more, Obama knows her. They both taught at the University of Chicago Law School.

The well-regarded ScotusBlog recently profiled Wood, observing that she is a proponent of a dynamic Constitution, citing remarks Wood recently delivered: “[t]here is no more reason to think that they expected the world to remain static than there is to think that any of us holds a crystal ball. The only way to create a foundational document that could stand the test of time was to build in enough flexibility that later generations would be able to adapt it to their own needs and uses.”

Lastly, Wood is a Texas Law alum, which would bring another kind of diversity to the Court, having graduated from a law school outside of the Ivy League.

Experts believe Obama will be announcing his choice late this week or next week.

A special thank you to PolicyinPractice.org and old friend, David Leland of Carpenter Lipps & Leland LLP, for allowing us to publish this insightful and informative piece as we wait for President Obama to announce his choice for Supreme Court.

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3 Responses to “Favorite Emerges for Supreme Court Pick”

  1. [...] more here: Favorite Emerges for Supreme Court Pick Bernanke: Recovery Is Right Around The Corner; Many Economists Doubt ItPrivacy PolicyA Turning [...]

  2. Judge Wood sounds like a very good choice to fill the vacancy created by Justice Souter’s announced retirement. I have great respect for Justice Souter and believe any of the three individuals touted as being in the running would make remarkable additions to the Supreme Court, but I would be lying if I didn’t say the idea of a non-Ivy League appointee thrills my blue collar roots. More proof that in America, anyone with the talent, the abilityand the determination to achieve can achieve.   

  3. Excellent choice from our new president. A woman with brains!

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