Diane Wood Would Give Obama a Reliable Abortion Advocate on Supreme Court
by Steven Ertelt
May 5, 2010
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — President Barack Obama will likely name a Supreme Court nominee in the coming days or weeks and should he pick federal appeals court Judge Diane Wood, he will get a reliable abortion advocate. Left-wing politicos like her judicial background of taking the most polemic pro-abortion position possible.
Obama’s short list of potential nominees to replace retiring pro-abortion Justice John Paul Stevens is said to potentially be down to four names.
With Stevens taking up membership in the pro-abortion majority on the high court, and with Democrats likely losing a considerable number of seats this November, some say Obama will take the opportunity to appoint the most pro-abortion justice possible — and that would put Wood’s name at the top of the list.
Thomas Goldstein, a Supreme Court legal analyst, told CNN yesterday, "Diane Wood is among the most respected federal judges on the left."
"Being a woman is a political plus, but she has decided cases on abortion," he said.
Wood has known Obama since their days at the University of Chicago and she still maintains a friendship with him. That’s personal relationship combined with reports that pro-abortion groups are waging a quiet underground campaign to push Wood’s name make her the odds on favorite of some.
But for pro-life groups, Wood’s abortion advocacy will earn her very strong opposition.
Wood began her campaign for abortion in earnest when she clerked for Justice Harry Blackmun in 1976-77 — only three years removed from his Roe v. Wade opinion that paved the way for 52 million abortions.
The potential Supreme Court nominee admired her former boss’ much-maligned opinion.
"Justice Blackmun articulated in Roe," she wrote in a 1993 law review article, "the important insight that a core set of individual rights exists that neither the states nor the federal government may trample."
Wood is a member of the federal 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and she has issued a number of rulings upsetting pro-life advocates.
In Hope Clinic vs. Ryan in 1999, she dissented in a ruling upholding partial-birth abortion bans in Illinois and Wisconsin. The current Supreme Court eventually overturned a prior high court and lower court rulings and affirmed as constitutional the national ban on partial-birth abortions.
The case National Organization for Women vs. Scheidler in 2001 saw Wood rule in favor of abortion advocates by allowing them to misuse the RICO law designed to control mob activities to sue pro-life protesters.
The Supreme Court twice overturned her opinion and, in February 2006, ruled a second time that federal racketeering laws used against mob bosses can’t be used against pro-life advocates who protest abortions. https://www.lifenews.com/nat2111.html
Wood kept alive the lawsuit against pro-life advocates even though the high court had already issued an 8-0 decision in their favor.
Joseph Scheidler, the defendant in the lawsuit, said after the decision that Wood " claimed an affiliation with Chicago NOW and Planned Parenthood throughout the duration of the" case.
Fellow 7th Circuit Judge Daniel A. Manion went as far as admonishing Wood in his opinion.
"I believe the Supreme Court meant what it said," he wrote and cited the high court’s opinion. "At that point, we should have closed the case."
In the case A Woman’s Choice-East Side Women’s Clinic vs. Newman in 2002, she issued a dissent in a case concerning an Indiana law requiring counseling and informed consent prior to an abortion. Similar laws in other states have reduced the number of abortions by giving women information about abortion risks and alternatives and have been upheld by the Supreme Court.
Wendy Wright, the president of Concerned Women for America, told LifeNews.com previously that pro-life groups would mount an all-out blitz against her nomination.
"Wood is outspoken in her support of abortion, including partial-birth abortion, as she spelled out in her dissent in the case Hope Clinic vs. Ryan," Wright noted.
"Her views on national sovereignty are troubling, especially as we see pro-abortionists inside and out of the Obama Administration promote abortion as if it were an international right," Wright added. "Not only does Diane Wood believe that Constitutional and human rights do not apply to all human beings, she has refused to extend Constitutional rights to people who defend the class of humans that she discriminates against."
Wright told LifeNews.com she is also troubled by Wood’s ruling in favor of abortion advocates by allowing them to misuse the RICO law designed to control mob activities to sue pro-life protesters.
"In the infamous NOW vs. Scheidler case, Wood sided with abortionists in their attempt to sue pro-lifers under RICO, as if peaceful pro-life protesters are mobsters," Wright said.
Wright says Wood was so far out of line on the case that the Supreme Court overturned her twice.
"The U.S. Supreme Court struck down her decision. When that same case went back down to her court to apply the ruling, Diane Wood refused to do so. In one of the most outrageous acts of judicial activism that has occurred in the history of America, Wood continued the suit against the pro-lifers, as if the Supreme Court hadn’t ruled. The Supreme Court was forced to intervene again to overturn her actions," Wright said.
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