Re: Fred Thompson on Southwick Nomination
It’s good to see Fred Thompson weigh in on the Southwick nomination (and I’m also pleased to see that Bench Memos is on his blog roll). I disagree, however, with a tack that he and some other defenders of the nomination have taken—namely, to highlight that Southwick did not write, but merely joined, the two opinions that are contested. With due allowance for the leeway afforded the writing judge, judges who join opinions may fairly be held to account for joining those opinions, and in some cases it might well be that one or two joinders shed damning light on a nominee’s suitability.
The proper defense of Southwick is that there is nothing objectionable about the opinions that he joined (as I have spelled out repeatedly, including here).