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11/09/2010

Giving truth the Schlaf: Iowa For Freedom edition

by Jeremy Hooper

Another completely misrepresentative take on the recent "Iowa For Freedom" campaign, this time from conservative doyenne Phyllis Schlafly:

"The powers that be in Iowa tried to tell Iowa voters that they had an obligation to vote yes on the three judges in order to maintain an independent judiciary. But what kind of an un-ColumnistsschlaflyAmerican election is that when you are told by important people you should vote yes but not no?

Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who for several years has been trucking around the country to support judicial supremacy, injected herself into the Iowa campaign by trying to make it unacceptable to vote no on any judge.
"
Phyllis Schlafly: Judges Get Their Comeuppance [TownHall]

Okay, first off: The "Iowa For Freedom" campaign was 100% designed to tell voters that they had to vote one way: NO. In fact, IFF supporters were often told that a non-retention vote was the only godly choice available. And they did all this on the basis of one ruling -- ONE. RULING! -- based on little more than faith-based disdain for same-sex marriage.

On the flip side: The defenders of the judges were not, by and large, saying to vote an unquestionable yes. Supporters were defending judicial independence in general, telling voters to cast a vote on the basis of the judge's entire careers, after reasoned considerations of all of their rulings (independent of personal faith views), and while using a fair assessment of the judiciary's role in civil rights conversations. So it's simply galling for Phyllis to suggest that it was the judicial supporters who were leading their witnesses!

Then, on to Sandra Day O'Connor: Again, the former SCOTUS justice did not at all encourage a blanket "no" vote. What she encouraged was a fair-minded outlook of the retention process and its usage:

We have to address the pressures that are being applied to that one safe place, the courtroom,” O’Connor said. “We have to have a place where judges are not subject to outright retaliation for their judicial decisions. That’s the concept. Sure they can be ousted and that’s part of the system, but what the framers of our federal constitution tried to do was establish a system of judicial selection where the judges would not be subject to retaliation by the other branches for their judicial actions.
IowaPolitics.com: O'Connor touts Iowa's merit system of selecting judges [IowaPolitics.com]

And what's even more egregious about Schalfly's usage of O'Connor now, is that the Iowa For Freedom campaign actually truncated O'Connor's words and USED THEM AS A WEB AD THAT INTIMATED SUPPORT FOR THEIR CAUSE!:

6A00D8341C503453Ef0134874A45B8970C
Sandra Day O’Connor on Removing Activist Judges [Iowa For Freedom]

From start to finish, the Iowa For Freedom campaign was one with no legs to stand on, so they manufactures bully clubs to support their platform instead. Now Schlafly is keeping that same mentality alive, suggesting that it was her socially conservative team that managed to triumph over the cruel tyranny of her opposition. We're just not sure when basic civics, mindful examinations, informed legal opinion, and one co-equal branch of government became the tyrants here.

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