The Rehnquist Choice: The Untold Story of the Nixon Appointment That Redefined the Supreme Court

The Rehnquist Choice The Untold Story of the Nixon Appointment That Redefined the Supreme Court In William Rehnquist seemed the perfect choice to fill a seat on the United States Supreme Court He was a young well polished lawyer who shared many of President Richard Nixon s philosophies an

  • Title: The Rehnquist Choice: The Untold Story of the Nixon Appointment That Redefined the Supreme Court
  • Author: John W. Dean
  • ISBN: 9780743233200
  • Page: 436
  • Format: Paperback
  • In 1971, William Rehnquist seemed the perfect choice to fill a seat on the United States Supreme Court He was a young, well polished lawyer who shared many of President Richard Nixon s philosophies and faced no major objections from the Senate But in truth, the nomination was anything but straightforward Now, for the first time, former White House counsel John Dean tellIn 1971, William Rehnquist seemed the perfect choice to fill a seat on the United States Supreme Court He was a young, well polished lawyer who shared many of President Richard Nixon s philosophies and faced no major objections from the Senate But in truth, the nomination was anything but straightforward Now, for the first time, former White House counsel John Dean tells the improbable story of Rehnquist s appointment Dean weaves a gripping account packed with stunning new revelations of a remarkable power play by Nixon to stack the court in his favor by forcing resignations of Rehnquist himself, who played a role in the questionable ousting of Justice Abe Fortas and of Nixon s failed impeachment attempt against William 0 Douglas In his initial confirmation hearings, Rehnquist provided outrageous and unbelievable responses to questions about his controversial activities in the 50s and 60s yet he was confirmed with little opposition It was only later, during his confirmation as Chief Justice, that his testimony would come under fire raising serious questions as to whether he had perjured himself Using newly released tapes, his own papers, and documents unearthed from the National Archives, John Dean offers readers a place in the White House inner circle, providing an unprecedented look at a government process, and a stunning expose of the man who has influenced the United States Supreme Court for the last thirty years.

    One thought on “The Rehnquist Choice: The Untold Story of the Nixon Appointment That Redefined the Supreme Court”

    1. "There ought to be a woman judge. Lots of women, and it's economic. I'm not for women, frankly, in any job. I don't want any of them around."(R.M. Nixon, according to transcript of recorded conversations)John W. Dean was one of the crucial figures in the Watergate affair of the early 1970s, the affair that ended R.M. Nixon's presidency. Of all the principal actors in the affair he might be the one who contributed the most to exposing the President's knowledge of all machinations. The Rehnquist C [...]

    2. With the release of the Nixon Tapes more books are coming out based on new information revealed in the tapes. This book is one of those books. The book is based on 420 hours of the recently released tapes that cover the 34 days in 1971 when Nixon filled two Supreme Court vacancies. Dean used the Tapes, his own papers from when he was Nixon’s White House Counsel, and documents from the National Archives. I never thought I would be listening to the famous Nixon Tapes.Apparently Nixon considered [...]

    3. While an interesting look at the internal dynamics of choosing Supreme Court Justices in general, and President Nixons in particular, this book suffers a bit from being a bit too reliant on the insertion of parenthesis to fill in thoughts. It breaks the narrative, and makes it difficult to determine what the point of a sentence might be, or what the person quoted is saying (I am aware that there is also an argument for inserting these, as it makes it more understandable). This also feels like a [...]

    4. This book reads like the strident ramblings of a defensive and bitter old man. It took 40 years for him to come out with this story. Undoubtedly Nixon had some practices that wee would not like, and the fact that every conversation was recorded hurts his reputation. But that is not news. This book at first seem to have a legitimate gripe. It devolves into a back-biting report through the transcripts that any one could read without any insight or useful commentary. If Dean was a player, he certai [...]

    5. The Rehnquist Choice by former White House Counsel John Dean is a quick and engaging history of President Nixon’s decision making process to fill a set of open seats on the Supreme Court of the United States. It is also, I suspect, an attempt at a mea culpa (although not really necessary IMHO) by Dean – but the real message here, at least for young political staffers – would be to keep your mouth shut if you don’t know what you are talking about!

    6. I had to read this for a political science class, and while a lot of books I have to read for school are quite dry, I found this one engaging. This book gave some very good insight into not only Nixon, but also the thought process that goes into Supreme Court choices. It's interesting to see how it unfolds beyond the scenes and beyond what we see in the news when decisions like this are being made. I thought it was very interesting and educational.

    7. While I can only give this 4 stars because I don't have the time to investigate and check Dean's sources and conclusions. Sorry but he is no more trustworthy than his old masters were! That caveat duly posted, this is a nice piece of first person testimony on a fascinating conservative appointment to the Supreme Court. Additionally, it brings back enough scoundrels (Nixon, Mitchell, et al) and racists (Stennis, Eastland, etc) to satisfy any Sixties/Seventies historian.

    8. The subject is interesting, but the book is really slooooow. It is a play-by-play of how Nixon ends up picking Rehnquist, but that doesn't even happen until the very last chapter -- every other chapter is about the rejects that come before Rehnquist. So as far as the actual "Rehnquist Choice" goes, it is in only the last chapter.

    9. What I liked about this book is that it gave a different perspective of the inner workings of the white house as the president tries to figure out who will take the spot on the nation's highest court. Rehnquist was not Nixon's first or second choice, but Rehnquist became a 30 year veteran of the court and one of its finest, and notorious, leaders.

    10. This was an interesting, if tediously dull, book. But it is important as it gives an insider account of how a corrupt Chief Justice managed to get past the senate judiciary committee while holding views not in harmony with the US constitution.

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