Bench Memos

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Re: Alito & Abortion


Kathryn, The spousal notification provision that Sam Alito voted to uphold was championed by then Pennsylvania Governor, Robert P. Casey—a Democrat. (He was the “Casey” in “Planned Parenthood v. Casey.”) Governor Casey believed that a husband is entitled to know if his child is going to be aborted. One may agree or disagree with this as a policy matter, but it is hardly an “extreme” idea. Indeed, I would be very surprised if the idea were rejected (much less condemned as “extreme”) by Governor Casey’s son, Robert P. Casey, Jr., who is running for the United States Senate against Rick Santorum. Someone should ask him. Like his late father, Casey is running as a strongly pro-life Democrat. If the senior Casey was fit to be Governor, and if the younger Casey is fit to serve in the United States Senate, then Alito’s position on spousal notification (which, as you pointed out, is not even an endorsement of the policy but only a judgment regarding its constitutionality) scarcely renders him unfit to serve on the Court.


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