When Samuel Alito was asked this morning about his decision to hear a case involving the Vanguard mutual fund company despite having promised the Senate Judicary Committee that he wouldn't, he said that he wishes he had handled things differently. When Alito was asked about a 1985 job application in which he spoke of the "supremacy" of the executive branch, he said he'd used an "inapt" phrase and didn't mean what he had said.
But when Alito was asked today about something else he said in that 1985 job application -- that the Constitution doesn't protect the right to an abortion -- he didn't do anything to disavow it. Alito said the statement accurately reflected his views as a Justice Department lawyer in 1985. He didn't say whether it reflects his views today. And so far, at least, no senator has put that question to him directly.
Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.