Sins of The Past

Drug Use derails Ginsburg's nomination.

Only a week before, Ronald Reagan had been all smiles as he ushered Douglas Ginsburg into the East Room of the White House to the applause and cheers of supporters. True, the former Harvard professor was, at 41, unusually young to be nominated to the Supreme Court and, with only a year on the federal bench, somewhat inexperienced. But the candidate for Associate Justice was, the President declared, "a man who believes profoundly in the rule of law."

Nine days later Ginsburg, under pressure from White House aides and his right-wing backers, withdrew his name. He did so gracefully, declaring in...