The Corner

If You Need an Emetic

try reading Kermit Roosevelt on David Souter:

The comparable figure that comes to my mind is Cincinnatus, the Roman hero called to leadership who cast off his authority and returned home to his farm as soon as the crisis was past. Souter did not seek out his position, nor, it now seems clear, did he value it for its own sake. He did not go to the court to effect change; instead he did us a great service by resisting it. Reading the long and heated opinions in Casey, now, has something of the drama of a visit to Gettysburg. That was the closest the enemies of Roe came to overturning legal abortion. They came close indeed. But the charge fell short in the end, turned back by just a few people, Souter crucially among them, who found themselves in the right place at the right time.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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