The elected and confirmed officials in our Federal Government all promise through affirmation of the oaths of office for their respective office.
A U.S. Senator takes this exact oath of office:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.
A Senator's highest principle is that oath of office, and if anything else gets in the way, if any other personal principle precludes a person from fulfilling that oath, then that person is unfit to be a U.S. Senator. This would include placing political party loyalties above fulfilling that oath. It specifies domestic enemies which to me includes those who attempt to modify, read into or otherwise interpret the Constitution of the United States to fit their views. Those who have signaled their intent to identify how a candidate for the Supreme Court intends to vote on their pet social cause is not in keeping with their oath to support and defend. The Senate should be looking at the reputation, education, ethical standards and legal expertise rather than trying to approve only a candidate that fits their personal views.
The oath to be taken by the president on first entering office is specified in Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.
The president thus promised the people that he will preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. Protecting the Constituion, means to me that that the president will strive to select SCOTUS candidates who will faithfully interpret the Constitution as written. Friendship, ethnicity or gender should not be the first principle in this selection but rather the reputaion, education, ethical standards and legal expertise. He has promised to recommend to the Senate for confirmation as a Supreme Court Justice only those who will faithfully interpret our Constitution rather than pursue a specific agenda, I can only trust that President Bush and his advisors will utilize the appropriate criteria during the selection process and as promised not use a "litmus test"
A Supreme Court Justice Oath
I, (NAME), do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same, that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter, so help me God.
True faith and allegiance to the Constitution would not embrace foreign laws and opinions but rather strive to understand what the Constitution says and does not say. Utilization of the many documents, letters, speeches written by the founding fathers which explains their mindset at the time our Constitution was written should be utilized in this interpretation rather than social changes or foreign law which may cause justices to rule on matters not specifically addressed and that more correctly should be left up to states or should require an official amendment and ratification by the people's elected federal and state officials.
Amending the U.S. Constitution is a function solely given to the Legislative branch. The Judicial and Executive branches have no say whatsoever. According to USConstitution.net "There are essentially two ways spelled out in the Constitution for how it can be amended. One has never been used.
The first method is for a bill to pass both halves of the legislature, by a two-thirds majority in each. Once the bill has passed both houses, it goes on to the states. This is the route taken by all current amendments. Because of some long outstanding amendments, such as the 27th, Congress will normally put a time limit (typically seven years) for the bill to be approved as an amendment
Regardless of which of the two proposal routes is taken, the amendment must be approved by three-fourths of states. The amendment as passed may specify whether the bill must be passed by the state legislatures or by a state convention."