December 5, 2008 – One of President-Elect Obama’s latest picks for the Department of Justice review team is Dawn Johnsen, a lawyer and long-time legal director for NARAL Pro-Choice America (1988-1993). She has also worked for the American Civil Liberties Union and serves on the Board of Directors of the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy.
Johnsen is yet another Clinton retread who served as Acting Assistant Attorney General heading the Office of Legal Counsel and Deputy Assistant Attorney General from 1993-1996. She was on Clinton’s transition team in 1992. She is currently a professor at the Indiana University School of Law.
In an essay in Slate magazine, Johnsen outlines her fears of a Supreme Court with judges like Samuel Alito on it: The Outer Shell: The hollowing out of Roe v. Wade.
In 2004, Johnsen blogged:
Those who seek to promote a progressive Constitution in 2020 absolutely must, as others have suggested, attend not only to the Constitution as judicially interpreted and enforced, but also to the roles of the political branches in upholding constitutional values and contributing to the determination of constitutional meaning. In addition to the essential task of working through differences in view(s) on the proper roles of each of the branches, we should work to effectively disseminate our views in ways targeted at opinion elites and government officials. We need to promote a less court-centered constitutional vision (for obvious reasons).
It is clear from her writings that Johnsen believes that the Constitution is whatever liberal judges say it is – not what the Founding Fathers meant.