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Greenburg's Supreme Conflict:
Today is the release date for Jan Crawford Greenburg's new book on the Supreme Court, Supreme Conflict. Amazon delivered it this afternoon, and so far I have read about 40 pages and skimmed another 50. So far it's a must-read. Greenburg's sourcing is incredible, as nine Justices and lots of other insiders agreed to talk with her. (I gather that the nine Justices includes eight of the current Justices plus O'Connor.) If you're a Supreme Court geek, you need this book.

  UPDATE: Via Howard, here is a long excerpt from the beginning of the book. Check it out.
SimonD (www):
I concur. This is really great stuff - I made it through about the first half yesterday evening, and have some observations in the "update" section of this post. Greenburg's done a great job, both in research and writing.
1.24.2007 9:32am
msmith (mail):
...Enter: George W. Bush and the setting of the stage for a full-blown conservative counterrevolution. Supreme Conflict contains entirely fresh perspectives across the entire sweep of its story, from the conservative movement's early fumbles with the nominations of justices Anthony Kennedy and David Souter to its crowning successes with the appointments of justices Roberts and Alito....

And nomination of Harriet Miers. Another crowning success! One success after another with Mr. Bush.

Speaking of, heard him talk of the importance of the courts in the always forgettable SOTU, thought he might mention judicial pay, since the Chief Justice was sitting just a few feet away and has made his views on that very plain.

Yes, Congress has to act there, but no bully pulpit even one-liner from the President. Well, at least four of them bothered to show up. Is that the usual number? Speeches always so forgettable can't remember.
1.24.2007 9:57am
SimonD (www):
Well, at least four of them bothered to show up. Is that the usual number
It's the same number as last year, although there's a reasonable argument that none of them should. Personally, I think we should go back to the tradition that held sway from Jefferson through Wilson for the SOTU, which would obviate the question of Supreme Court attendance.
1.24.2007 10:13am
Anono (mail):
Not sure who is the lone holdout, but given that Greenburg describes Clarence Thomas's desk and Thomas's thinking process about one early case, I'm guessing that she talked to him, which is stunning given how rarely he talks to the media.
1.24.2007 10:20am
Roy Englert:
I agree with Orin. I got my copy from Amazon late yesterday and have made it to page 133 so far. I wish I could spend today reading the rest of the book instead of dealing with client obligations. The book covers well-plowed ground, yet I am learning new things constantly as I read. Largely that's thanks to the Blackmun papers, but Jan's interviews also have yielded a lot of new and interesting information, and Jan has put the material together exceptionally well.
1.24.2007 10:33am
josh:
I'd like to reiterate a comment from a previous post. JC Greenburg is likely the finest high court reporter in the country, teaching Linda Greenhouse a thing or two when she covered the Court for the Chicago Tribune for years. We lost out when she went to TV.

But to be clear, she was and remains a member of the dreaded "MSM". Her accumen (which I'll attribute in part to a U of C law education) hasn't gotten better, or worse, since she's left print journalism. She's merely another example of fine reporting.
1.24.2007 11:21am
josh:
Rather, her work is an example of fine reporting.
1.24.2007 11:22am
Anono (mail):
Wow. If *Roy Englert*, of all people, is learning new things "constantly" from this book, be amazed.
1.24.2007 12:07pm
Adam B. (www):
The Thomas info could have come from a clerk; we know he has his own book deal, so I wouldn't be surprised if he were tight-lipped to others.
1.24.2007 12:28pm
Reid C. (mail):
I purchased Greenburg's book yesterday at lunch. The bookstore in downtown DC hadn't put it out for sale yet and seemed surprised someone was asking for it, which was surprising to me given the amount of buzz and play it was getting before its release. In any event, I plowed through the book last night, all of it in a quick read. The first half or more is, as said above, pretty well plowed ground, given David Savage's "Turning Right" and Ed Lazarus's "Closed Chambers" and other similar books, not to mention the recent biographies of Blackmun and O'Connor by Linda Greenhouse and Joan Biskupic, respectively. But, as teased before its release, the book offers many details about the nominations of Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Samuel Alito that I had never heard before. Indeed, the details that are intresting and new include all the behind the scenes action on these nominations and those further past. It is fascinating stuff.
1.24.2007 12:48pm
anonVCfan:
But when will Justice Stevens retire?!?

Some of you must know by now, unless she revealed it in a sort of code.
1.25.2007 5:35pm