IMAGE: Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.
Lm Otero  /  AP
Presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., warned the National Sheriffs' Association meeting in Indianapolis, Tuesday, that his Democratic rival would appoint more Supreme Court justices who would rule as the court did in a child rape-death penalty case.
updated 7/1/2008 2:32:56 PM ET 2008-07-01T18:32:56

Republican John McCain said Tuesday that his Democratic rival's Supreme Court nominees would produce more decisions like the child rapist ruling that both presidential candidates have criticized.

Addressing the National Sheriff's Association, McCain acknowledged that Democrat Barack Obama had also disagreed with the decision that struck down a Louisiana law allowing capital punishment for people who rape children under 12. Obama said he believed carefully crafted state laws permitting execution of child rapists do not violate the Constitution.

Nevertheless, McCain asked: "Why is it that the majority includes the same justices he usually holds out as the models for future nominations?"

"My opponent may not care for this particular decision, but it was exactly the kind of opinion we could expect from an Obama court," the Arizona senator said.

When asked by CNN in May whether any current justices would be models for his nominees, Obama replied that he considered Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and David Souter to be sensible judges. All three voted in the majority in the child rape case, as did Justices Anthony Kennedy and John Paul Stevens.

McCain himself voted to confirm four of the five who voted in the majority. He was not in the Senate in 1975 when Stevens was confirmed.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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