After listening to James Dobson and his evangelical Christian colleagues talk about controlling the federal judiciary through the Republican majority in Congress—to the extent of punishing judges and defunding courts—one can’t help recalling events in 1930s Germany. The National Socialists removed judges who didn’t go along with the party program. Law became what the party said it was.
Dobson, speaking on his radio show in April, imagined political change proceeding this way: “The troublesome Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco could be abolished and then staffed by different judges immediately.” He complained that “Congress has not had the political gumption to take any such action.” House Majority Leader Tom DeLay has encouraged such views: “We set up the courts. We can unset the courts. We have the power of the purse.”