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News and Op/Ed

Letters to the Editor
Comments should be sent to our editor-in-chief Adena Potok at editor @ Please include name, address and phone number for identification purposes. 

Chaka Good, Casey Bad
What a great interview with Congressman Chaka Fattah! You asked some tough questions, and his answers made me wish he represented me. Thanks!

Also, now that Treasurer Casey has declared himself in favor of confirming Judge Alito to the Supreme Court, the advice to support him because he will vote to keep people like Alito off the bench no longer works. So tell me again, why should I give my money and shoe-leather to the Casey campaign?
-- Joy Matkowki, Enola, PA

Publisher's note:  Casey chose not to participate the the League of Women Voters recent Senatorial debate January 23 in Harrisburg. The recent Zogby poll shows Casey trailing among informed voters in the Democratic primary. It also shows Casey making little inroads with conservative voters.

Samuel Alito's Record Speaks for Itself
When working people hear that Samuel Alito's record speaks for itself, they should be very concerned.
Judge Alito's record speaks to racial and gender discrimination in the workplace. His record speaks to restrictive views of workers' access to family and medical leave. His record speaks to weakening protections for pension, health and safety, and wage and hour provisions.
Judge Alito's judicial philosophy has led him to decisions that would have "eviscerated" legal protections under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (Bray v. Marriott Hotels) and to preventing a woman claiming gender discrimination from going to trial (Sheridan v. E.I. DuPont de Nemours
and Co.
Especially alarming in light of the tragedy in West Virginia, Judge Alito voted to exempt a mining services company from safety regulations (RNS Services v. Secretary of Labor). He sought to interpret the law such that newspaper workers would have been excluded from the protections of federal minimum wage and overtime laws (Reich v. Gateway Press). Judge Alito has also written that governments do not violate due process rights of employees when they suspend them without a hearing and without pay (Homar v. Gilbert).
In one last example, Judge Alito also held that Congress did not have authority to require state employers to comply with the Family and Medical Leave Act - a ruling that was later repudiated by the Supreme Court.  In a political climate in which working people have lost ground on their paychecks, their health care, their pensions, and their job security, the choice of Samuel Alito seems less than judicious. Grouped together, Judge Alito's narrow reading of the law reflects a record that is at odds
with, if not hostile to, working families.
- Rosalind Spigel, Area Director, Jewish Labor Committee, Philadelphia, PA

Publisher's note:  Elsewhere in this issue of the Philadelphia Jewish Voice, read the thoughts of the NJDC and JSPAN on Judge Samuel Alito.