Clinton White House Worried About Justice Ginsburg’s ‘Extreme Liberal Views’

Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Ruth Bader Ginsburg / AP

The Bill Clinton White House worried that Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s "instinct for defending some rather extreme liberal views" could spell trouble for her confirmation to the Supreme Court, according to documents released on Wednesday.

Among those views was an apparent belief that courts should be more lenient with criminals who distributed pornography to minors.

In a July 14, 1993, memo, Ron Klain, then an associate counsel to President Clinton who oversaw Ginsburg’s nomination, warned Clinton adviser David Gergen of Ginsburg’s penchant for staking out highly controversial left-wing legal positions.

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"When asked about her support for ACLU policies to legalize prostitution, decriminalize the distribution of pornography to minors, decriminalize marijuana, and ban the death penalty, Judge Ginsurg has a strong tendency to defend the ACLU position," Klain wrote.

Ginsburg also strenuously objected to the manner in which the late Robert Bork was treated during his confirmation hearings.

"Bork was ‘unjustly crucified’ for his ‘candid’ responses," Klain wrote, quoting Ginsburg.

In contrast, Klain said, Ginsburg felt that former Justice David Souter gave overly "political" answers during his confirmation hearings.