High Court DeliberatesIn a few months, the Supreme Court will come up with a decision regarding abortion rights. Right now, they are digesting the lawyers’ arguments. I suspect that they are aware of the political implications, coming in an election year, that their decision would have. Because of the former president’s three appointments to the SCOTUS, they are clearly political as well as judicial creatures.
Delivered by Republicans, this new political view of the Court was emphasized during the arguments before it when Justice Sotomayor questioned whether the legitimacy of the Supreme Court would endure if it overturned abortion rights during a landmark hearing on a Mississippi law restricting the procedure. “Will this institution survive the stench that this creates in the public perception that the Constitution and its reading are just political acts?” Sotomayor said during oral arguments Wednesday morning. “I don’t see how it is possible.”
If their decision amounts to a repudiation of Roe vs Wade, and makes abortion more difficult nationwide, they will be handing the Democrats a tool to use in amassing the votes of the nation’s women whom numerous surveys indicate favor allowing Roe vs Wade to remain the law by large margins. They would be fools not to use it. This will result in continued Democratic control of both Houses of Congress. I wonder if some Democrats quietly hope that this is the way the cookie will crumble. They need the votes of as many women as possible.
Aware of this, the Republican-appointed Justices might dance around the issue but leave Row vs Wade to stand. This would anger many conservative Republican voters, leave them unhappy, further split their Party and perhaps contribute to Democratic victories in 2022.
I suspect the SCOTUS will try to land somewhere in the middle, leaving both sides with something about which to crow and not affecting the 2022 elections greatly. Remember, their decision will be political and not based on jurisprudence. As Justice Sotomayor questioned, will the court “survive the stench … in the public perception” of it that such a decision would bring about. Exchanging the doctrine of basing decisions upon precedent, “stare decisis,” of which Roe vs Wade is part for political expediency might be the act that leads President Biden, if he maintains a Democratic majority in Congress in 2022, to attempt to increase the number of Justices on the Court, which the Constitution does not specify.
And speaking of those elections, and the SCOTUS, it is time for the Democrats to convince Justice Breyer to retire so that they can replace him while they still control the Senate, something that is not guaranteed after the 2022 elections. After their experience with the Mitch McConnell, who always puts Party ahead of country, Democrats now know that continued control of the Senate and the presidency is crucial to the make-up of the SCOTUS. Justices are not immortal, as the late Justice Ginsberg might have believed.
The ages of SCOTUS Justices seem to indicate dominance of the Supreme Court by Republicans for a long time, unless there is a change in the number of Justices. The Democrats have two Justices in their 60’s and one in his 80’s. The Republicans have two Justices in their 70’s, one in his 60’s but three Justices under age 60, which is ominous for future Democratic legislation unless the Court is enlarged. Not good.
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A Choir of Angels
There was a shooting at a Michigan High School this week by a fifteen-year-old. At least four students were killed. Of course, possession of an automatic handgun by a fifteen-year-old is illegal, but he probably would not have had it were it not for the wide proliferation of weapons in this country and the legal acceptability of their being carried supposedly for self-defense. And that can be blamed on the Supreme Court of the United States.
The only self-defense we need is against vile Supreme Court Justices like Roberts, Alito, Thomas (all three still serving on the SCOTUS), Kennedy (retired) and Scalia (deceased) whose votes in D.C. vs Heller in 2008, supporting Justice Scalia’s opinion, meant that the last fourteen words of the Second Amendment could stand alone and had no connection with the Amendment’s first thirteen words. This decision has put hundreds of millions of weapons, some legal and some illegal, into the hands of American citizens. The Justices who went along with Justice Scalia’s opinion cannot walk away from the murders they brought about.
The Second Amendment in its entirety reads as follows: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
I am not a lawyer, nor are most of you, but I do read English. What do you think the words of the Second Amendment mean?
If the first thirteen words have nothing to do with the second fourteen words, why did the framers of the Constitution bother to put them there in the first place, separated from the last fourteen words by only a comma? Contrary to Scalia’s warped reasoning, the Amendment was intended to allow people to have weapons to bring with them if they were called to serve in a State’s militia. Without these arms, a militia would be weaponless and powerless.
Everyone at the Constitutional Convention in 1789 knew that the Amendment’s wording was a compromise concerning slave-holding States, whose votes were necessary to pass the Constitution, potentially enabling them to be able to stand up against the Federal Government, if its troops were ever used to enforce an outlawing of slavery. (That did happen three-quarters of a century later.)
The tragedy is that these five Justices knew all of this but voted as they did for political reasons because gun rights voters were (and still are) an important part of the Republican base. If you believe there is such a place, I suspect that Scalia is already burning in Hell. The other four will eventually join him there, until this decision is ultimately reversed.
And when that day comes, all those murdered because of Justice Scalia’s opinion will form a choir of angels announcing the good news.
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Representative Liz Cheney in response to the former president’s challenge to debate members of the House Committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection. “Any communications Mr. Trump has with this committee will be under oath and if he persists in lying then, he will be accountable under the laws of this great nation, and subject to criminal penalties for every false word he speaks.”
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