With Bork as a key adviser, we get an idea of Romney's agenda
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The controversy over Rep. Todd Akin's remarks concerning "legitimate rape" forced Mitt Romney to address the abortion issue during the run-up to the Republican National Convention. Mr. Romney has taken a wide range of positions on abortion during his political career, but the naming of Robert Bork as co-chairman of his Justice Advisory Committee is much more significant than his stated positions on abortion, or on any other issue.
The president elected in November will likely appoint one or more Supreme Court justices -- four of the nine current justices are over 74. Mr. Bork, rejected by the Senate as Supreme Court nominee in 1987, has been a right-wing standard bearer in Republican politics for four decades. He has questioned the constitutional right to privacy, the foundation for the Roe v. Wade decision that overturned state laws banning abortion. Mr. Romney recently said he would "love" it if the court overturned Roe v. Wade.
Mr. Bork harbors a variety of extreme views. He has defended the constitutionality of poll taxes and literacy tests for voters. He has called the Civil Rights Act of 1964 "unsurpassed ugliness" and has defended state laws that made gay sex a criminal offense. As a judge he routinely ruled in favor of big business over individual Americans.
Forget the poll-tested statements Mr. Romney has recently made in order to appeal to moderate voters. By embracing Robert Bork as a model for judges he would appoint, including to the Supreme Court, and by making Mr. Bork a key adviser, Mr. Romney has made clear his extreme agenda.
First Published August 30, 2012 12:00 am