It's a world of constant surprises

Patrick Leahy explains why he voted to confirm Chief Justice John Roberts.

Published August 2, 2007 3:18PM (EDT)

It turns out that Alberto Gonzales isn't entirely alone in the "explanations that don't quite add up" department. In an interview with the Politico's Roger Simon, Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Patrick Leahy says he voted to confirm Chief Justice John Roberts only because he knew he was going to be confirmed anyway and thought a pure party-line confirmation vote would leave Roberts thinking he was "an appointment of the Republican Party."

Leahy admits that it has pretty much worked out that way anyway: Under Roberts, he says, the Supreme Court has become "an arm of the Republican Party."

By Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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Patrick J. Leahy D-vt. Supreme Court