Trump’s second Supreme Court pick: Conservative Kavanaugh, as expected

Karl Rove and Kavanaugh (credit: Getty Images)

“President Trump has chosen Brett Kavanaugh, a conservative judge from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit — often thought of as the second-most-powerful court in the country — to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court,” as NPR is reporting.

“Kavanaugh is a connected Washington insider with roots in politics in the George W. Bush White House. He has written almost 300 opinions for the D.C. Circuit in 12 years — and he is only 53, which means he could serve on the high court for a very long time.

“Some conservatives, though, question his bona fides, and he is controversial with Democrats because of his role investigating President Bill Clinton as part of the Starr investigation in the 1990s. And he now believes that a sitting president should be protected from litigation and criminal investigations because they ‘are time-consuming and distracting.’

“Notably, in an era of hotly partisan politics, Kavanaugh has said that it’s important not to be a partisan when one becomes a judge. ‘Check those political allegiances at the door when you become a judge,’ Kavanaugh said in 2015 in a speech at Catholic University’s law school.

The rest of the article is here.

Four-star student dorms at UCSD and a learning experience

SAN DIEGO – We flew from Phoenix to San Diego for the second leg of our “excellent adventure” this summer. The flight was packed. No surprise there. I often go to San Diego for the Del Mar horse races and notice lots of Arizona people escaping the heat at the beach or a hotel swimming pool.

This summer, we’re in San Diego because our son was accepted to a two-week Summer Medical Academy, hosted by Rady’s Children Hospital and the UCSD School of Medicine. I think he’s the first from our neck of the woods, but the administrators liked his application and essays. He will join a group about 30 other high-school students from throughout the state, a good experience.

“Our signature program, the Summer Medical Academy (SMA) is an educational summer program that provides high school age students with unique and exciting opportunities to explore the world of medical training and practice,” according to the program. “The program utilizes a mixture of lectures /interactive discussions, hands-on skills clinics, group projects, career panels, and team building/networking.”

This is a full day, five-day-a-week program with a syllabus filled with first-class learning experiences. My wife and I brought our laptops and we’re telecommuting from our apartment.

We are staying at The Village at Torrey Pines, an on-campus housing complex for UCSD students. It’s convenient, and we wanted our son to have a “college-like experience.”

But it was not the teachable moment I’d been hoping for in terms of “roughing it.”

This is four-star apartment, not a modest dorm like the one I stayed at when I was a freshman at Cal in 1978. Unlike our small room with two twin beds and facing desks at Priestley Hall at Cal, this is a fully equipped apartment for just $140 a night.

It has a full kitchen, dining area, two full baths, three bedrooms, flat-screen TV, high-speed internet access and other amenities. Some of the apartments have ocean views. No dishwasher, though. It is in a prime location. We can walk to an on-campus market, restaurant, swimming pool and more.

It’s obvious why UCSD is so popular with students, including a growing number from our neck of the woods. It sits on a bluff overlooking the ocean, and it is a popular campus for STEM students like our son. Irwin Jacobs, the co-founder of Qualcomm, a leading high-tech firm in San Diego, has been a generous donor to the engineering school. It is named after him.

I’m coming home later this week to coordinate the distribution of our magazine with our Sacramento and Reno distributors. I wish I could stay longer.

We’re in Phoenix, where the low is 94 degrees

PHOENIX — We have been spending the week in Phoenix, of all places, where our son is on a Sacramento team participating in the USA Volleyball Boys’ Junior National Championships. The tournament attracts teenagers from all over: Orlando, Chicago, San Diego, Silicon Valley and so on.

The matches are indoors at the Arizona Convention Center, thank goodness. At 94 degrees this morning, Phoenix broke the highest low temperature on record. The high is expected to be 112 degrees.

I often visit Phoenix in March for baseball spring training, going to Giants’ and Cubs’ games. This time we went to a Diamondbacks’ game at Chase Field, within two blocks of our hotel. The dome opens for a fireworks show, but it is shut tight during the game to keep the temperature at 75 degrees.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio continues to dominate the local headlines: “At 86, Joe Arpaio’s Senate run worries GOP voters. His response: Age means nothing.”

Another local headline this week was the 92-year-old woman who shot and killed her 72-year-old son because he wanted to put her in an assisted living facility. The sheriff found 13 guns in the home. Only 13, mind you.

Guns and Ammo magazine has named Arizona the best state to be a gun owner.

One hundred ways to beat the heat this time of year includes “get out of town.” We’re going to take a dip in the postage-stamp pool at the otherwise comfortable Westin Phoenix downtown hotel. Enjoy your weekend!