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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

In all fairness

Ordinary people, arise. Your time has come:

Once again, I view the process of selecting a Supreme Court nominee as among my most serious responsibilities as President.  And while we cannot replace Justice Stevens' experience or wisdom, I will seek someone in the coming weeks with similar qualities -- an independent mind, a record of excellence and integrity, a fierce dedication to the rule of law, and a keen understanding of how the law affects the daily lives of the American people.  It will also be someone who, like Justice Stevens, knows that in a democracy, powerful interests must not be allowed to drown out the voices of ordinary citizens. 

As one of those "ordinary citizens," of course I want the court to be fair to me, but we have to be careful about what we mean by "fair." I don't want to get a break because I'm an ordinary citizen up against powerful interests.  I want the justices to look at the facts of the case and decide, as objectively as they can, and do what those facts warrant, whether the outcome favors the ordinary or the powerful

And I don't want cops giving me a break just to even out a break given to some rich guy the day before; I want them to just apply the law, equally and consistently.  I don't want surgeons deciding on the worthiness of patients instead of just operating on the bodies in front of them. Institutions have guidelines and procedures to make sure everybody they deal with can benefit from what the institution offers. Fairness means applying those guidelines objectively, not deciding to selectively substitute subjective judgments