Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) is a national treasure complete with an incisive wit and dry sense of humor. He has displayed these talents throughout his time in the Senate whether by stumping unqualified Brandon nominees and or in interviews with reporters.
He once again put these talents to great use Wednesday by confounding a radical left Brandon District Court nominee named Ana de Alba during her confirmation hearing. One of De Alba’s jobs before becoming a judge was working for the American Civil Liberties Union.
De Alba currently serves on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California. She has been nominated by Brandon to serve on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
One would think as a judge she would understand basic constitutional law. Alas, she repeatedly flunked a question that a first-year law student could answer.
Kennedy asked de Alba if she could explain the dormant commerce clause since it had been in the news. The Dormant Commerce Clause is a legal doctrine which prohibits one state from discriminating against another state’s commerce or “impose undue burdens on interstate commerce.”
De Alba replied that she was “somewhat familiar” with the clause but did not elaborate further.
Kennedy responded by reminding her that there was a big Supreme Court case dealing with the dormant commerce clause in California and was previously heard by the Ninth Circuit.
As Fox News reported , The Supreme Court case Kennedy referred to involved California’s Proposition 12. This is a state law that states pork products imported into the state must meet certain welfare standards.
The Brandon Justice Department ruled against California, claiming Proposition 12 was unconstitutional because it violated the Dormant Commerce Clause. The Supreme Court bucked the Brandon regime and upheld California’s law last week.
Despite these obvious facts, De Alba was left completely bamboozled.
De Alba: I apologize, Senator. You know, in my 11 years of practice and five years on the bench, I have not dealt with the Dormant Commerce Clause. But if I am so fortunate enough to be confirmed and have to deal with it in the future, I would certainly …
Kennedy (interrupting): You’ll look it up?
De Alba: Research it and, yeah, be prepared.
De Alba’s humiliation was not done, though. Kennedy then asked her to give a general explanation of the overall Commerce Clause. The Commerce Clause gives Congress power “to regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes.”
She could not.
De Alba: my understanding about the Commerce Clause, like I stated, Senator, is that it is under Article 1 of the Constitution, and it allows the legislature to create laws that allow for movement and things related to commerce in the United States and anything crossing state lines, things like that.
Kennedy: So, it allows Congress to regulate commerce?
De Alba replied in the affirmative. But when Kennedy asked her if she had any other examples, this was her response.
It’s not coming to mind right now, Senator.
Despite humiliating herself, De Alba will likely have no problem getting confirmed for a lifetime judicial position because Democrats control the Senate.