Lugar Promises to Buck Fellow Republicans to Support Obama Judge

lugarThere’s another crack in the Republican wall of opposition to Pres. Obama’s policies, nominees, and general existence. Sen. Richard Luger (R-Ind.) says he will vote to confirm the president’s first appeals court pick, Judge David Hamilton of Indianapolis. He is nominated for a seat on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, based in Chicago.

Hamilton, appointed by Pres. Bill Clinton in 1994 to the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, has been labeled a judicial activist by right-wingers and a moderate by lefties. Among his rulings was a decision that children’s First Amendment rights don’t mean that parents can’t be required to give permission for them to access video games that depict extreme violence and explicit sex. That determination was later overturned. On the other hand, his sentence of 100 years for a child pornographer was upheld. The son of a United Methodist minister also ruled that prayers and invocations in government proceedings must remain higher power neutral, avoiding “proselytizing” themes like references to Jesus as our personal savior.

Lugar said during a Senate speech Monday that Hamilton’s rulings have been “within the judicial mainstream.” The Republican senator says opponents have misconstrued Hamilton’s decisions on issues such as prayers in the Indiana Legislature and striking down part of a state law on abortion counseling.

In bucking the hysterics of his party, like Alabama’s Sen. Jeff Sessions, who claim Hamilton is an extremist, Lugar is putting the interests of his constituents above partisan allegiance. And that, kids, is just what the people’s representatives should do.