Republican presidential candidate Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J., speaks to a packed barn crowd during a campaign stop Friday, Dec. 11, 2015, in Wolfeboro, N.H. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)

Yikes! Chris Christie Has a Terrible Record on Judges

As I noted last week, Chris Christie said he has changed his mind on gun control because of his time as a federal prosecutor. His statement came just three years after he said he was in favor of gun control because of his time as a federal prosecutor.

Now he’s done it again. Chris Christie over the weekend said he opposed Sonya Sotomayor as a Supreme Court nominee by Barack Obama, but at the time Christie actually did support her.

Hillary Clinton had an op-ed in Friday’s Boston Globe where she raises the Supreme Court as an issue. Even the Washington Post realizes what is at stake. Conservatives should treat it as one too. Scalia and Thomas are getting up in years. The next President will probably get two to three Supreme Court picks that will help reshape the country for a generation.

Chris Christie’s record in New Jersey is a pretty terrible one when it comes to judges. Carrie Severino, a former law clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas and now chief counsel and policy director to the Judicial Crisis Network, reminded everyone how bad Christie is over the weekend.

In 2013 the New Jersey Supreme Court, including two Christie appointees, handed down a unanimous decision in favor of same-sex marriage. As if that didn’t say enough about what Christie’s “kind of justices” would do on the issue of same-sex marriage, Christie tried to appoint another justice whose views on the issue were even clearer. Bruce Harris — whose nomination was ultimately rejected by the state senate after he acknowledged that he had no courtroom experience — was known mainly for writing a letter to legislators in which he argued that opposing same-sex marriage is analogous to supporting “slavery, (which is even provided for in the Bible), segregation, the subservience of women, to name just a few of these ‘traditions.’” ….

In 2013, two of his appointees joined a unanimous decision opening the floodgates to class actions by applying a very broad interpretation to a state consumer-protection law. Similarly, in 2014, three of his appointees joined a unanimous decision making New Jersey an even more favorable environment for class actions by holding that contracts have to expressly waive court rights even if they have a clear and express arbitration clause. It’s almost as if Christie’s nominees want more class-action litigation in New Jersey.

Christie’s defenders will claim that this is just New Jersey and Governor Christie is dealing with a liberal New Jersey Senate that must confirm. But that is not Christie’s own position. On television this weekend, Christie defended his judicial picks in New Jersey and said of his critics that “Those folks haven’t watched New Jersey closely.”

The problem for Chris Christie is that his critics have watched New Jersey closely.

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Erick Erickson

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