Monday, January 07, 2008

Hon. Edwin Messe to speak to Greenville Federalist Society on January 14

One third of the active seats on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit are vacant. These vacancies threaten the prompt administration of justice, long held to be a hallmark of the Fourth Circuit. To discuss the Fourth Circuit vacancies and broader issues related to the federal judicial confirmation process, the Greenville Lawyers Chapter of the Federalist Society has invited Edwin Meese III. Mr. Meese served as the 75th Attorney General of the United States from February 1985 to August 1988. As the nation's chief law enforcement officer, he directed the Justice Department and led international efforts to combat terrorism, drug trafficking and organized crime. In 1985, he received the Government Executive magazine's annual award for excellence in management. From January 1981 to February 1985, Mr. Meese held the position of Counsellor to the President – the senior position on the White House Staff – where he functioned as President Reagan's chief policy adviser. As Attorney General and as Counsellor, Meese was a member of Reagan's Cabinet and the National Security Council. He also served as chairman of the Domestic Policy Council and of the National Drug Policy Board.

The Federalist Society invites you to this luncheon meeting of the Greenville Lawyers Chapter. The cost is $10 for lunch. Lunch will be served at noon, and the discussion will begin shortly thereafter. Adjournment is at about 1:15 p.m. RSVP to Bill Watkins at no later than January 10, 2008.


Glenn Sugameli said...

When Ed Meese was Attorney General in the late 1980’s, he instituted unprecedented ideological screening interviews for judicial nominees that President Eisenhower’s attorney general, Herbert Brownell, denounced as “shocking.”

President Bush has set an even lower bar by turning judicial nominees into political pawns who are chosen because they will not be confirmed by the Senate.

Repeatedly, President Bush has rejected 4th Circuit and other Republican and Democratic home-state senators’ “advise and consent” suggestions of conservative Republican alternatives who would be readily confirmed to appellate judgeships. These include Bush federal district court judges and, in at least one case, Bush’s own initial choice, as I explained in recent Politico and Providence Journal op-eds.

Meese is well aware of the extremely controversial record of the pending 4th Circuit nominee from South Carolina, Steve A. Matthews.

Legal analyst Dahlia Lithwick wrote in Slate that his resume “suggests that Matthews’ strongest credentials include his role as former state chapter president of the Federalist Society and membership [with Meese] on the board of directors for the Landmark Legal Foundation,” . . . which tried “to nominate Rush Limbaugh for a 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.”

Matthews also served as an officer of Landmark Legal, which is headed by talk show host Mark R. Levin, who called global warming “nonsense” and “phony,” and condemned Sen. John McCain (R.-Ariz.) and Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (I.-Conn.) as “liberal idiots.” In Men in Black: How the Supreme Court Is Destroying America, Levin thanked Matthews and Meese for having “supported me in all I do” and wrote that the Supreme Court was “merely upholding the Constitution” in its long-discredited 1936 ruling that Congress lacks authority to regulate employer-employee relations, including “wages, working conditions, the right of collective bargaining, etc.”

For more see

-Glenn Sugameli
Senior Legislative Counsel
Washington, D.C.

Helvidius said...

I don't know Steve Matthews and have never had a case with him, but his paper credentials look as sound as any other judicial nominee. Yale grad, Phi Beta Kappa, experience at DOJ, managing partner at one of South Carolina's most prestigious firms.

Everyone gets in a huff when a member of the Federalist Society is nominated for a judgeship, but why doesn't the same standard apply to ACLU members, e.g., Ruth B. Ginsburg?