Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
How does an extreme left wing judge "balance" the court out more than a mainstream liberal judge? Do they somehow get an extra vote if they really disagree with the other side?

Interestingly enough, I'd say those are two of the most wishy-washy justices in recent history. Neither one met a 17-factor balancing test they didn't love.

The SC shouldn't be designed to resemble any political position.
Perhaps we are talking "semantics"....when I say far-right or far-left in this context, I am saying a "mainstream liberal" or "mainstream right-wing" judge.

"Mainstream" to me...would not be right or left, mainstream would be centrist.

So, when I talk about balance that's what I'm talking about.

In the last 3 decades, we haven't really had a "liberal" President. Carter and Clinton were both moderate Democrats....Thus...their picks for the Supreme Court have reflected that idealogy (to the best they possibly could).
H.W. and G.W. picks have, for the most part, been to the far-right. So what has happened is that the more liberal side of the SCOTUS has been replaced with either moderate judges or right-wing judges. This has put the balance of the SCOTUS in jeopardy. That is why this last election was probably more important that any other election in my lifetime. No one knows what McCain would have done. But with 1-3 more picks similar to Alito, Roberts, Thomas, the SCOTUS could have been severely skewed. Being that these are lifetime appointments, the reality is, this would have had a long lasting effect that probably would have latest the rest of my life. At least with 2 picks, President Obama can ensure that this isn't going to happen anytime soon. If Obama is lucky enough to get 3 appointments he would be able to probably protect the Court at least for my lifetime.

You are correct in that finding "moderate" judges will have similar protections, appointing 1 or 2 "liberals" though just provides a little more protection against those far-right appointments, in that with a moderate judge, you can never be sure where they are going to side (taking your Kennedy/ O-Connor example into account).