Fox's Angle suggested Roberts's "settled law" remark indicates he would uphold Roe on Supreme CourtAugust 5, 2005 12:45 PM EDT ››› ANDREW SEIFTER
Fox News chief Washington correspondent Jim Angle misconstrued Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr.'s pledge, made during his 2003 appellate court confirmation hearing, to "fully and faithfully apply" Roe v. Wade as the "settled law of the land" as an indication that he would vote to uphold the landmark 1973 abortion-rights decision if confirmed to the Supreme Court.
In fact, Roberts's acceptance of Roe as an appellate judge says nothing about whether he would vote to uphold it as a Supreme Court justice, as Media Matters for America has noted (here, here, and here). Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales has pointed out that asking a circuit court judge if Roe is "settled law" is a "different question" than asking it of a Supreme Court nominee because unlike an appellate judge, "a Supreme Court justice is not obliged to follow precedent if you believe it's wrong."
From the August 4 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume:
ANGLE: Though Judge Roberts once said Roe v. Wade was settled law, skeptics are convinced he thinks otherwise and recently conducted focus groups to see what voters think.