At his hearing or in written answers to senators’ questions, Pryor:
affirmed that he still disagrees with the Supreme Court’s ruling that handcuffing an Alabama prison inmate to a hitching post for hours in the hot sun without bathroom breaks or sufficient water violated the 8th Amendment’s prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.
said he believes that the Supreme Court should not be “the arbiter of the method of capital punishment in Alabama,” an example of Pryor’s dangerous view that the Constitution should not apply to certain matters regarding individual rights guaranteed by the Bill of Rights and the 14th Amendment.
said that he still believes that Virginia Military Institute’s denial of admission to women in the late 20th Century was constitutional because military academies had denied admission to women for more than a century after the 14th Amendment had been adopted. (This ignores the fact that the nation’s military academies had been co-ed for nearly a quarter-century by the time of the VMI ruling or that there are a number of practices that took place after the 14th Amendment was ratified that we would not even attempt to justify today, such as school segregation.)
ducked questions about his public statements that he was happy that the Bush v. Gore decision ending ballot counting in Florida was 5-4 because it would demonstrate to President Bush the importance of “the judiciary and judicial selection, so we can have no more appointments like Justice Souter.” Pryor’s comment reflects an apparent belief in a judiciary that is selected for adherence to a particular political ideology.