By Paul Bedard, Washington Whispers
Chief Justice John G. Roberts isn't the first Supreme Court justice to have that last name. And even though he wasn't the chief, former Justice Owen J. Roberts left a legacy so large that even the newest Roberts is a student of his work. In FDR v. Constitution, Burt Solomon details how Roberts capped the effort led in part by then Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes to beat back FDR's scheme to pack the conservative court with six liberals. Solomon, a National Journal reporter, thought his page-turner might find a home in the current chief justice's library, and it has. Shortly after receiving it, Roberts hand-penned a note to Solomon. "September 17, 2009, Constitution Day," Roberts began. "Many thanks for the copy of your new book. I spend a day on the topic in my 2-week summer course (from Hughes's perspective), so I will be interested in your take."