Extremist Judicial Nominee Passes on Largely Partisan Vote
Earth Justice, July 9th, 2003
Washington DC-- The environmental protections enjoyed by all Americans were placed at risk today when the Senate voted narrowly (54-43) to confirm Victor Wolski to a seat on the U.S. Court of Federal Claims (CFC). Not a single Senator who voted in favor of Mr. Wolski spoke on the Senate Floor, even after Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) spoke twice on the Floor today in opposition.
Mr. Wolski, a self-described libertarian ideologue, is expected to use his position at the court to promote his position that the “property rights” of corporations outweigh the need for common-sense environmental, public health, and other fundamental safeguards.
“Apparently, even supporters were embarrassed by Mr. Wolski’s extreme self-proclaimed libertarian ideology on the critical property rights issues he will decide on this important court,” said Glenn Sugameli, Senior Legislative Counsel at Earthjustice. “While this should not be a party issue, the lockstep party-line vote by Republican Senators to confirm Mr. Wolski demonstrates the need to block the most extreme nominees through filibusters. Unfortunately, the majority vote apparently reflects either ignorance of Mr. Wolski’s record or a willingness to ignore Senators’ constitutional advise-and-consent duty to exercise independent judgment on lifetime judicial nominees.”
The CFC decides nearly all property rights “takings” challenges to national environmental and other protections. Mr. Wolski has made it clear that his position on property rights and “takings” claims will favor corporations at the expense of public health, taxpayers, and the environment. In 1999, Victor Wolski stated, “Every single job I’ve taken since college has been ideologically oriented, trying to further my principles.” Mr. Wolski’s longest-held position was for the industry-funded Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF), where he brought sweeping property rights/takings challenges against environmental protections.
“The fact that Victor Wolski is a self-proclaimed ideologue on the very issues he would decide as a judge makes him uniquely unqualified to decide fairly whether taxpayers must pay corporations to comply with health, safety, environmental, and other safeguards,” said Sugameli. “Unfortunately, Mr. Wolski’s rigid ideology is apparently the only reason he was nominated.”
Glenn Sugameli, 202-667-4500 x 221
Cat Lazaroff, 202-667-4500 x 213
For more info: http://www.earthjustice.org/policy/judicial/nominees/index.html#wolski
Original article: http://www.earthjustice.org/news/display.html?ID=625
The Pacific Legal Foundation Board of Trustees - March 2003
See full list: http://www.pacificlegal.org/misc/plfboard.pdf
THOMAS C. LEPPERT -- Chairman and CEO of The Turner Corporation. With revenues approaching $6 billion, The Turner Corporation provides a complete range of construction and program management services in the non-residential building market and manages more than 1,000 projects every year.
RONALD E. VAN BUSKIRK -- Firm General Counsel of Pillsbury Winthrop LLP, global law firm that "provides our clients with the strength of Silicon Valley and Wall Street" with a focus on financial institutions, technology, media and advertising, and energy; as well as mergers and acquisitions, insolvency and restructuring, litigation and intellectual property. Ronald specializes in the Environment, Land Use & Natural Resources, Global Energy, Land Use, and Litigation.
WARNER C. LUSARDI -- Chairman of the Board of the Lusardi Construction Company, a full-service general contractor. Lusardi Construction has projects across the western United States, with awards approaching $200 million in all aspects of construction, including office, industrial, manufacturing, retail, hotel and recreational, high-end residential, research and development, and institutional projects.
JAMES J. BUSBY -- President and Owner of the Security Owners Corporation in Martinez, California, a small homebuilder of high-quality homes. James is well respected by his subcontractors, and known as the "consummate volunteer member" at the Home Builders Association of Northern California.