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Roberts' abortion views examined

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WASHINGTON, Aug 16, 2005 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- U.S. Supreme Court nominee John Roberts referred to the "abortion tragedy" in written advice to President Reagan, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.

The memo to Reagan was among some 5,000 documents released Monday -- with thousands of more expected next week -- as members of Congress, special interest groups and the media try to parse out Roberts' personal stands on controversial issues, such as abortion.

In 1985, Roberts, then a senior legal adviser in the White House, sent a memo saying a memorial service that doctors in California planned for aborted fetuses was "an entirely appropriate means of calling attention to the abortion tragedy," the newspaper said. Four years earlier, when the nominee was at the Justice Department, Roberts wrote about the "so-called 'right of privacy'" in reference to the legal argument of the right to an abortion.

Even with such controversial stands, the Post reported Democrats are unlikely to mount a campaign to derail Roberts' nomination. One Democratic aide told the newspaper the party's strategy is to make it clear Roberts should face fair scrutiny.

The U.S. Senate is to take up Roberts' nomination when it reconvenes in three weeks.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International.

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