Jeffrey Toobin lifts the veil of secrecy from the faces of the U.S. Supreme Court
In his appearance at the Miami Book Fair International 2007, CNN and New Yorker legal reporter Jeffrey Toobin lifted the veil of secrecy surrounding the nine Justices of the Supreme Court. In a conversation with Michael Putney, political reporter for Miami's ABC affiliate WPLG-10, Toobin described why he wrote his bestselling probe into the secret world of the Supreme Court Justices, The Nine (Doubleday; September, 2007), suggesting the lack of media scrutiny of Supreme Court Justices is anachronistic and detrimental to an open democracy. Toobin then discussed the impact of the Federalist Society and the Supreme Court's swing to the far right. Putney and Toobin then explored the personalities of the Justices, including Justice Anthony Kennedy, who has never been on the minority side of a Supreme Court decision; the bitterness and contradictions of Justice Clarence Thomas; the indefatigable energy of former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor; the ideology of Justice Antonin Scalia; and the intellect and power of Chief Justice John Roberts. Referencing the advancing ages of four Justices, Toobin reflected on the potential impact of upcoming Supreme Court retirements. Toobin offered insights into the Second Amendment handgun case expected to be decided in the coming months before taking questions from the audience on the relatively light Supreme Court caseload that became the norm under Chief Justice Rehnquist; the probability of the landmark Roe v. Wade being overturned by a Roberts-Alito-Scalia-Thomas Supreme Court; the pros and cons of setting Supreme Court Justice term limits; what happens to abortion rights in the hands of states if Roe v. Wade is overturned by the Supreme Court; what the prospects are for increasing the number of Justices on the Supreme Court; and the appearance of voter apathy when it comes to Supreme Court decisions.
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