Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Pawlenty's appointment of "strict constructionist" to Minnesota Supreme Court upsetts Star Tribune columnist

Liberal Star Tribune Nick Coleman, who seemingly dislikes anything conservative, is not surprisingly upset with Governor Pawlenty's appointment of Chris Dietzen to the Minnesota Supreme Court. Dietzen has served on the Minnesota Court of Appeals for the last several years and was appointed to the Supreme Court to fill the vacancy left by Justice Sam Hanson who has gone back to private law practice. That means Pawlenty has appointed three of the seven justices to the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Coleman was particularly upset by Pawlenty description of Dietzen as a person who "has proven himself to be a strict constructionist who will follow the rule of law with impartiality," Pawlenty went on to say, "In a time when legislating from the bench has unfortunately become commonplace, Judge Dietzen has continually used judicial restraint and common sense."

Where has the Minnesota Supreme Court been egregiously activist and legislating from the bench? The biggest example is the Court's 1990s decision
Doe v. Gomez which found a constitutional right to abortion funding in the Minnesota Constitution. The result? Minnesota taxpayers paying for thousands of abortions each year.

As with most presidents and governors, their most long lasting legacy is often who they appoint to their respective supreme courts.

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