Roman Hruska was United States Senator from Nebraska from 1954 to 1976. He was a leading conservative, and was anything but a mediocre legislator. But when Richard Nixon appointed G. Harold Carswell to the Supreme Court in 1970, Hruska had this to say about claims that Carswell was less than qualified:
“Even if he were mediocre, there are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers. They are entitled to a little representation, aren’t they, and a little chance? We can’t have all Brandeises, Frankfurters and Cardozos.”
Carswell was not confirmed. And despite Hruska’s accomplishments, he is best known today for his defense of public mediocrity.
As we watch many in Congress talk and talk and talk about why they are not doing anything—except talking—we might remember what Lincoln said: “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.” Or we…
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