Originally Posted by Qliveur
To answer your last question, I'll admit that I assumed (yes, I know: bad) that that is what he would do based on the actions of his predecessors, both Democrat and Republican. It's what they've always done in an attempt to sway the Supreme Court over to their respective ideologies or to at least balance it. It's been this way since I can remember.
If you're right about the president's choice, it would be refreshing, to say the least.
The guy that's leaving now (Souter) was appointed by Bush 41 (a conservative/Republican), but has consistently ruled on what's considered "the left". That's just the most relevant example.
The problem that "the right" has is that the Supreme Court is supposed to interpret the Constitution and the Constitution limits government and empowers individuals. This mix means that it's difficult to place limitation on individual rights, however that's mostly what the modern conservative agenda seeks to accomplish. Hence why I find all the fist shaking at "activist judges" to be hypocritical in the extreme