Friday, May 28, 2004

Hillary v. Federalists

As John Fund points out today, Hillary went out of her way to assail the respected Federalist Society at a seemingly non-partisan event:
This week Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton couldn't resist politicizing an event celebrating the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education. Sponsored by the Northside Center for Child Development in Harlem, the occasion featured stirring speeches by actors Ozzie Davis and Ruby Dee, as well as one by Robert Carter, the counsel for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund at the time of Brown. Mrs. Clinton was there to receive an award but surprised everyone by using her speech to attack the Federalist Society, a highly respected group of conservative legal scholars and law students that counts dozens of federal judges in its membership.

In her mind, though, the group apparently is a vast right-wing conspiracy to bring back Jim Crow. "Their idea is that the America that has been created [by the Brown decision] is not the America they believe in," she told the surprised crowd. "They want to turn the clock back on America and the goals we all have." The attack was nothing short of bizarre. Liberal scholars such as Cass Sunstein and Walter Dellinger have frequently participated in Federalist events and have never considered its viewpoint outside the mainstream. Indeed, the society's seminars are a popular Washington ticket for Beltway intellectuals of every stripe. But Mrs. Clinton has once again shown that behind the moderate facade she has adopted in the Senate, she deep down remains a liberal ideologue.
I will sieze the opportunity to recommend Presidential Leadership: Rating the Best and the Worst in the White House, published by the self-same Federalist Society.

The book arrived in the mail today and I spend an hour with it at lunch. Fun stuff. It has the Federalists' ranking of the presidents (top 3: GW, AL & FDR) and a short, readable sketch of every president by such celebrity writers as Glenn Reynolds, Bill Bennett, John McCain and cetera. It's fun and informative, and buying it delivers the added bonus of supporting an organization Hillary despises.