So it looks like maybe, just maybe, Judge Sam Alito isn't as conservative as the nickname Scalito would have you believe. He certainly doesn't seem as virulent a conservative as his probable future colleague. It is readily apparent that Senators, both Dems and Republicans are impressed with Alito's intelligence and constitutional law experience. Now it has come out that he "has great respect" for the Roe v. Wade decision and his former clerks of all political orientations say that this is a judge who respects precedent and does an excellent job of separating his political views from his judicial decision-making. It looks like, at least in the case of abortion (considering that his views on civil rights leave a lot to be desired), President Bush actually got what he was looking for: a non-activist judge. In the past when conservatives said they didn't want activist judges, what they really meant was that they didn't want activist liberal judges. They just never mentioned the liberal part of the equation and now they are paying for it. Despite the fact that Alito is no doubt a conservative, it looks like he is a judge, and presumably a justice, who respects precedent and will not overturn previous cases just because of political winds.