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Interest groups weigh in on Roberts nomination

[JURIST] Interest groups from across the political spectrum are weighing in with their reactions to the White House nomination of Judge John G. Roberts to the US Supreme Court [JURIST report]. Conservative groups have largely welcomed the announcement. C. Boyden Gray, chairman of the Committee for Justice which promotes constitutionalist judicial nominees, said in a statement Tuesday evening that

John Roberts has had one of the most distinguished legal careers in modern times... His outstanding education and career, high character, and faithfulness to the Constitution make him an excellent fit for the court at this moment. His nomination is a solid first step towards returning the federal judiciary to its proper role in our system.
The National Pro-Life Action Center has also applauded the choice [NPLAC press release], stating that "it is not the duty of a Supreme Court nominee to unify our nation." The Christian Coalition, which has vowed to support strict constructionist candidates, stated "we are trusting that Judge Roberts is in the mold of Supreme Court justices who President Bush promised to appoint to the Supreme Court: such as Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas." Progress for America [website], a conservative grassroots organization, has vowed to spend $18 million or more in a media blitz to promote support for Roberts. CNSNews.com has additional coverage of conservative [CNS reports] and pro-life [CNS reports] group reactions.

Some liberal groups have denounced the appointment as divisive, while others have argued for caution and a careful investigation of Roberts' record. Pro-choice groups fear Roberts because of statements made while he was Deputy US Solicitor General that Roe v. Wade was "wrongly decided and should be overruled." National Organization of Women President Kim Gandy said in a statement
Roberts' background shows a political ideology that is inconsistent with the independence we have a right to expect from the Supreme Court. He does not have a commitment to the basic values of fairness and equality, and our hard-won rights will be in jeopardy if he is confirmed.
NARAL Pro-Choice America [press release] has sent an electronic alert to 800,000 contacts urging them to contact senators to oppose the Ronberts confirmation [press release]. Political action group MoveOn.org [website] has called Roberts a "right wing corporate lawyer and ideologue" [press release] and is organizing a mass petition to oppose his confirmation. The Washington Post has more. US Newswire maintains a running list of press releases on the Roberts nomination.

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