To: National Desk, Legal Desk
Contact: Joe Scheidler of the Pro-Life Action League, 773-777-2900, cell 312-965-1030
Chicago, July 20—”John G. Roberts believes in the U.S. Constitution. That’s exactly the kind of judge I want to appear before when I bring my case to the Supreme Court for the third time later this year,” said pro-life activist Joe Scheidler on learning of George Bush’s high court nominee. Scheidler is the National Director of the Pro-Life Action League and the principal respondent in NOW v. Scheidler, now in it’s twentieth year of litigation.
“We don’t know much about Roberts’ views on abortion or Roe v. Wade,” Scheidler added, “but we’re encouraged by his record of integrity, his conservative credentials and the confidence placed in him by so many pro-life leaders.” Scheidler also notes that Roberts’ wife Jane once served as executive vice-president of Feminists for Life and that the couple’s two children were adopted, suggesting a pro-life sensitivity. And Roberts wrote in a brief for the first Bush administration that “Roe was wrongly decided and should be overruled.”
Scheidler was granted certiorari by the high court in June. When the Court reconvenes in the fall, Scheidler will appear before them to argue that the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals wrongly interpreted the Supreme Court’s 2003 decision that RICO could not be used against his pro-life activities and that the judgement and injunction imposed on him by the district court must be vacated. The Seventh Circuit ignored the clear language of the 8-1 decision, opening the door for further litigation in the district court.
Judge Sandra Day O’Connor, whom Roberts was nominated to replace, was one of the eight justices who voted in favor of Scheidler, the Pro-Life Action League and the other pro-life activists in the case. The decision was written by Chief Justice Rehnquist, for whom Roberts once served as a law clerk. As deputy solicitor general, Roberts wrote an amicus brief on behalf of pro-life activists in another case before the Supreme Court.
“I don’t just have a personal interest in this nomination,” Scheidler notes. “John G. Roberts would help to stem the tide of judicial activism that has brought ruin to our country. I encourage all advocates for life to strongly support his nomination.”