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"Each individual should allow reason to guide his conduct, or like an animal, he will need to be led by a leash."
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Thursday, August 05, 2010

Judge in California gay marriage case is no left-wing liberal

Judge Vaughn Walker, who yesterday overturned California's Proposition 8 banning gay marriage, has been accused of "extreme judicial activism" and "judicial tyranny"; a "San Francisco liberal" who has allowed his personal bias to thwart the will of the people. David Boaz of the Cato Institute points out a few facts about Judge Walker that inconveniently don't fit this narrative:
In fact, Judge Walker was first appointed to the federal bench by President Ronald Reagan in 1987, at the recommendation of Attorney General Edwin Meese III (now the Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow in Public Policy and Chairman of the Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at the Heritage Foundation). Democratic opposition led by Sen. Alan Cranston (D-CA) prevented the nomination from coming to a vote during Reagan’s term. Walker was renominated by President George H. W. Bush in February 1989. Again the Democratic Senate refused to act on the nomination. Finally Bush renominated Walker in August, and the Senate confirmed him in December.


In other words, this “liberal San Francisco judge” was recommended by Ed Meese, appointed by Ronald Reagan, and opposed by Alan Cranston, Nancy Pelosi, Edward Kennedy, and the leading gay activist groups. It’s a good thing for for advocates of marriage equality that those forces were only able to block Walker twice.


Anonymous said...

You do realize that the judge is a practicing, open homosexual right? His arguments for legalizing homosexual marriage were coloured with personal biase rather than clear legal thinking. I am 100% confident that the U.S. Supreme Court will overturn his decision on the basis of poor judicial reasoning.

Eric said...

I am aware that the judge is gay, but I don't think you can definitively say that his homosexuality resulted in a biased judgement. Judges are capable of putting aside personal feelings & judging cases on their merits alone. Would you make the same argument if he was heterosexual & married & had decided the case in favour of Proposition 8? As for the Supreme Court - we'll see.

Travis said...

I think this rationale ignores the simple fact that a judge can still be "liberal" or a "judicial activist" despite being appointed by a Republican and opposed by Democrats.

For example, Davis Souter was appointed by Bush 41 and opposed by Ted Kennedy, NOW, and the NAACP.

Whether Judge Walker is a "liberal San Francisco judge" is not predicated on such thin supports.