John Roberts in Context

Michael Medved

7/6/2012 2:16:57 PM - Michael Medved

While conservatives feel appropriate indignation, even rage, over John Roberts’ surprising, unpersuasive decision to uphold ObamaCare, we should avoid personalized denunciations of the Chief Justice.

He previously served in both the Reagan and first Bush administrations, and voted with the court majority in the landmark 2008 Heller decision, finding a fundamental right under the Second Amendment for citizens to keep guns in their homes. He also cast decisive votes in Citizens United, protecting free speech in elections, and in Crawford vs. Marion County, allowing states to require photo identification for voters.

Roberts is only 57 and could dominate the court for a quarter century more—including deciding next term’s monumental case on affirmative action, determining whether the Constitution really is colorblind. Nasty attacks by conservatives won’t bring him closer to the conservative principles we desperately need him to defend.