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HOST: we are joined by goorg gray. great to see you, i know you are thrilled about the nomination. give us your opinion about how tough of a time you think he is going to have getting through the senate confirmation hearings.
BOYDEN GRAY: i don't think it is going to be an absolute cake walk. people for the american way said this would be a constitutional ca taftify which i think is a llittle over the top. but i think he is going to be confirmed by a comfortable majority. i can't imagine having that much difficulty.
HOST: when did you find out about it?
GRAY: when did i find out about this nomination?
GRAY: well, the word began to leak out late in the afternoon but i didn't find out officially from the white house until about 7:30.
HOST: your first take, were you surprised?
GRAY: no, i was not surprised. festivity if i might tell an anecdote on senator schumer, i was at dinner with him just after the the o'connor vacancy and we both agreed this likely meant it would be roberts' nomination. i was thrilled.
HOST: chuck schumer was on our air last night shortly after the president made a pick and he made it clear the first time he sat across the table from judge roberts when he was up for the circuit court of appeals job, he asked a series of questions and the judge didn't answer them and he was steamed about that and he said you know, this time through, that's not going to happen. is it really appropriate when senators ask nominees how they are going to react to things that they may have to weigh in on years from now?
GRAY: it is totally inappropriate. it undercuts the independence of the judiciary. it is an ethical problem to the nominee because it precommits him or her to a noogs he or she must have an open mind about. it was clinical who said we should not ask a nominee for his views on specific issues, issues and he should not answer but if he does, we should disspice him for it. senator candidate introduced then judge mashtial to the hearings with the announcement that judge mashtial would not -- marshal would though the answer questions and ruth bader ginsburg refused to answer about some 36 cases that might come before her. so there is a long history of not answering specific questions.
HOST: he went through his confirmation hearings for his federal judgeship saying he always separated his personal beliefs from the u law and that includes row v. wade. why all the uperror from the pro choice groups today?
GRAY: well, he said he wouldn't overrule it. so i think they are flying blind and people for the american way, i don't know what has gotten into them. this is a mainstream conservative. he is out halftime same mold as -- although more brilliant -- and maybe the most brilliant of the current pick of appellate judges but he is in a very solid line going all the way back to the beginning of reagan term. right solidly mainstream of where the appellate judiciary is today and he shouldn't have a problem. there is one thing that i won't put it past the democracy to do which is to -- democracy to do which is to demand internal papers of the government when he was in the office with the solicitor general. but i hope they don't do that. those papers are not the public.
HOST: well, maybe you just gave them an idea.
GRAY: no, i don't think so.
HOST: thank you for joining us....