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Alito SCOTUS hearings

What Questions Would You Ask a Supreme Court Nominee?

In this episode of New Ideal Live, Onkar Ghate and Ben Bayer explore the principles that should guide judges dedicated to interpreting a Constitution that enshrines and protects individual rights. From this perspective, they comment on statements given by Judge Amy Coney Barrett in her recent confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court.

Among the topics covered:

  • The fundamental value of First Amendment rights;
  • Why religious liberty isn’t specially privileged compared to other personal freedoms;
  • Why the establishment clause and protection of religious liberty are not in tension;
  • Why it’s important to acknowledge rights unenumerated by the Bill of Rights;
  • Why the “originalist” approach to Constitutional interpretation is attractive to jurists with a religious mindset.

Mentioned in the discussion are Ayn Rand’s essay “Man’s Rights” and ARI board member Tara Smith’s book Judicial Review in an Objective Legal System.

This podcast was recorded on October 28, 2020. Watch or listen to the discussion below. Listen and subscribe from your mobile device on Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsSpotify or Stitcher. Watch archived podcasts here.

Podcast audio:


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Ben Bayer

Ben Bayer, PhD in philosophy, is a fellow and director of content at the Ayn Rand Institute and the author of Why the Right to Abortion Is Sacrosanct (2022). Ben is a managing editor of New Ideal and a member of the Ayn Rand University faculty.

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