The next Chief Justice of the Supreme Court will have two first names. He will be white. He appears to be a nice person. He carries himself in a professional manner, shakes hands in a stalwart official way while directing his attention squarely on the other person. He is well-spoken, seems to have a sense of his legal obligations as an attorney, an arbiter, and a judge.
But thus far in John Robert's public persona – at least, that persona we see in short television or radio vignettes – I get no sense of the person. If he has a moral, social, intellectual, political, or emotional center, it is buried. He appears plain vanilla. That perception alone makes me nervous.
After all, this is a lifetime appointment.