On April 10, 2008, Justice Antonin Scalia was given an award at the University of Virginia. Scalia was a founder of the Federalist Society; while he was at the school, he spoke at a lunch for UVa Fed. Soc. members.
Guess what? I'm a member. I went.
When he was done speaking, I was able to chat him up a little bit. And, what do you know? It looks like this lil' ol' blogger scooped 60 Minutes' Leslie Stahl.
Here's the audio:
Some comments on the rest of the audio...
As you heard, Scalia suggested the Court's credibility wasn't hurt because if it came out the other way, partisans from his side would have been just as contemptuous of the institution.
Unfortunately, that argument is betrayed by the reasoning he used in explaining that the decision was just fine. He said that if the the Court had not stepped up, the Florida legislature or United States House would have decided the election and the result would have been the same.
Well... the truth is that if Scalia and the rest of his band of usurpers had applied the law, the decision would have favored Gore. After that, he's probably right - the Republican House or Florida's Republican legislature would have determined which slate of electors to seat.
And that is exactly how it should have played out.
The House and Florida legislature are designed to be political - the Court is not. We elect our legislators - if we don't like what they do, we replace them. We cannot replace a Supreme Court Justice. In deciding a political issue, the Court clearly went far beyond its proper bounds.
I would have liked to have asked him about the recusal process - with a family member working on Bush's transition team, shouldn't he and Thomas have recused themselves? Ah... but it isn't often that a law student gets to argue with a Supreme Court Justice and even I possess limits to my audacity... Maybe another time...