Roger L. Simon

Roberts Goes Both Ways

From this morning’s LAT: Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr. worked behind the scenes for gay rights activists, and his legal expertise helped them persuade the Supreme Court to issue a landmark 1996 ruling protecting people from discrimination because of their sexual orientation.

Then a lawyer specializing in appellate work, the conservative Roberts helped represent the gay rights activists as part of his law firm’s pro bono work. He did not write the legal briefs or argue the case before the high court, but he was instrumental in reviewing filings and preparing oral arguments, according to several lawyers intimately involved in the case.

It’s not just because I support gay rights that I find this heartening. I like people who are able to “go both ways” politically and are not so mired in the preconceptions of ideology that can’t respond to the real world.