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Filibuster possible over Alito reapportionment views, Biden says

[JURIST] Senior US Senate Judiciary Committee [official website] member Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE) [official website], said Sunday that views expressed by US Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito [White House profile] on reapportionment in a 1985 document [PDF] could have repercussions for his nomination and lead to a filibuster. This is in contrast to Biden's remarks of a few weeks ago when he said a filibuster would be unlikely [JURIST report]. Biden now says he's troubled with Alito's apparent disagreement with the electoral principle of one-man one-vote from the 1962 decision in Baker v. Carr [text], which held that arbitrarily drawn legislative districts can be challenged in federal court. The 1985 document is an application for the position of deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Reagan Administration, and is one of a collection of 100 pages on Alito [Reagan library documents; Bush library documents] recently released. Alito states in his application, "[i]n college, I developed a deep interest in constitutional law, motivated in large part by disagreement with Warren Court decisions, particularly in the areas of criminal procedure, the Establishment Clause and reapportionment." Biden said that if Alito really is against reapportionment then many Senators including himself will be "willing to do whatever they can to keep him off the court." The same document last week led Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid [official website] to express concerns [JURIST report] with Alito's views on abortion [JURIST report], despite Alito's contention during meetings with senators that the Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade [text] decision deserves respect [JURIST report]. Alito's confirmation hearings are scheduled to begin on January 9 [JURIST report]. AP has more.

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