Roberts grilled by Kennedy on voting rights

CAPITOL HILL (AP)_John Roberts isn't satisfying one prominent Democratic senator with his answers on the issue of voting rights.

Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts was among the Democrats pressing Roberts about his writings on civil rights while a Reagan administration lawyer two decades ago. Kennedy said some of those writings on voting rights took a "narrow" and "mean-spirited" view that didn't show a full appreciation of discrimination.

Roberts responded that voting rights are "the most precious rights we have as Americans." And he said he supported an extension of the landmark 1965 voting rights law.

Kennedy spoke critically and at length about Roberts' writings. He was interrupted several times by Republican committee chairman Arlen Specter, who told him to let Roberts speak.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.