Chief Justice William Rehnquist died tonight in his home. Just as the confirmation hearings for Judge Roberts begin this week, the search for a new Chief Justice will also begin.
I'm sure Rehnquist was a decent fellow (as my mother would say), notwithstanding the following quick summary of his opinions on significant matters of constitutional merit:
Van Orden vs. Perry, which affirmed the right of the Texas State Capitol to have a 6-foot high monument of The Ten Commandments on its grounds.
Dissented on Atkins vs. Virginia, which barred the execution of "mentally retarded" persons.
Part of the majority in Bush v. Gore that overturned the Florida State Supreme Court's decision and threw the "election" to Bush.
Zelman vs. Simmons-Harris, which found that religiously affiliated schools may participate in taxpayer-funded tuition voucher programs.
Dissented on Texas vs. Johnson, which struck down laws banning flag burning.
Wow. That's quite a record. The scary thing is not that Rehnquist pushed these beliefs, it's that his successor will more than likely be far worse...