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Archive for the ‘Judicial Watch’ Category

Sharia Law Creeping Across Britain

Posted by Mike on September 15, 2008

Over the past year, many sharia court decisions in the UK have been backed by the force of law. The legal justification is an Act of Parliament which permits courts to enforce arbitration decisions. On the surface, this justification is nothing extraordinary. Many legal systems, including our own, look favorably upon and even encourage alternative dispute resolution. What’s happening in the UK however is not your typical arbitration system.

The types of cases approved by British courts have included not only your run of the mill contract case, but also divorce, inheritance, and even domestic violence cases. Many Brits were outraged earlier this year when the Archbishop of Canterbury claimed that the imposition of Sharia Law was inevitable. I suspect that those who have noticed and bemoaned Britain’s lax attitude toward Islamic extremism in their midst will have a similar reaction to this latest revelation.

I’d like to think Gordon Brown would have something to say about the unprecedented parallel legal system that emerged on his watch. Then again, that might be expecting too much from a Labour Prime Minister who refuses to identify his nation’s enemy and can’t even hold Glasgow East.

Posted in Culture, Europe, Judicial Watch, Religion, UK Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Where Does Obama Stand on Gun Rights?

Posted by Ryan on June 29, 2008

We’ve all seen the video from February where Obama agreed wholeheartedly with the 32-year-old DC gun ban, then when the Supreme Court interpreted the 2nd Amendment to mean what it says last week, he was for that too even though it overturned the 32-year-old DC gun ban.

This incident recently reminded me of something my father once said about why on God’s Green Earth the American people voted for Jimmy Carter in 1976:  aside for the Ford/Nixon pardon-thing, the American people found Carter affable because he was for everything they we for!  Whenever he spoke to a new crowd, he told them what they wanted to hear, blurring the lines between what he really wanted to do.  The result was a candidate, then President, who many people thought they agreed with, but in fact did not. 

A recent Rasmussen poll indicates that 43% of the people think Obama disagreed with the Supreme Court’s ruling, while a full 41% think he did agree with the ruling!  It seems like the Obama campaign is being effective at telling people what they want to hear when they want to hear it.  It doesn’t really concerns me where Obama stands on this issue (we all know he won’t appoint anyone to the courts who would have voted to uphold the Constitution) but this is a potential problem for the Fall — saying whatever to whoever and getting away with it.  Add that to the poor state of the McCain camp and we don’t have a prayer.

Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Gun Rights Preserved by One Vote

Posted by Ryan on June 26, 2008

The Supreme Court has obviously been a little bipolar lately… who am I kidding?  Justice Kennedy wants to be the powerful/swing justice on the court as he voted today with the Four Good Justices to uphold the Second Amendment

It was a Scalia v. Stevens battle, with Scalia happily on the winning side. 

Justice Antonin Scalia wrote a lucid and detailed opinion for the majority (pdf — start on page four for Scalia’s view) where he addresses the original intent of the Founder’s views on individual gun ownership, referring to Jefferson, Madison and others in his opinion.  It’s cited full of British and American history as to the meaning of the Founder’s intentions, SCOTUS precedent, and the DC law itself.  It is a breath of fresh air.

The buzz out there is not that SCOTUS actually upheld the Constitution (which lately is pretty amazing), but that four justices saw no need to uphold over 216 years of precedent on the principle of individual gun rights!  If this is an indication of where things are going on this court, 2008 will sadly be a critical election to decide the political nature of our supposedly non-political branch.

Pic is Archibald Willard’s painting “Spirit of ’76.”

Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

SCOTUS: Child Rapists are Protected from the Death Penalty

Posted by Ryan on June 25, 2008

The Supreme Court is getting out of control and the libs on the Court are certainly not making many friends lately.  What’s next I wonder?

In the wake of pronouncing that al Qaeda has more rights than Nazis did, and with 42 states having passed anti-Kelo laws, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 that the death penalty is off-limits for child rapists, unless of course, the child’s death results.  I’ll let you guess who voted to uphold Louisiana’s law allowing the death penalty for child rapists in this blatant act of judicial legislation.

All the Eighth Amendment “cruel and unusual” banter from Justice Kennedy (alas, a Reagan appointee gone loopy), doesn’t really take into account the effects on the victim.  Here’s what Justice Alito had to say about this ruling in his dissent:

“[Alito] lament[ed] that the majority had ruled out executing someone for raping a child ‘no matter how young the child, no matter how many times the child is raped, no matter how many children the perpetrator rapes, no matter how sadistic the crime, no matter how much physical or psychological trauma is inflicted, and no matter how heinous the perpetrator’s prior criminal record may be.’”

Maybe Justice Kennedy thought that the perp, Patrick Kennedy (no joke), was a relative or someone he knew.  Who knows?  Liberals on the court since the 1950s have seen the perps as the one’s potentially hurt by laws, not their victims so much.  I’m just waiting for the political branches of our government to assert themselves against the poorly devised judicial dictates from this court over the last few years. 

Posted in Blogroll, Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics, War on Terror | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Gitmo Detainees Get Their Day in Court

Posted by Ryan on June 12, 2008

And the Constitution gets its day on the toilet paper roll!  The Supreme Court was about as off-base and dangerous today as as they were in Dred Scott.  POWs held at Gitmo will, for the first time in our history, be allowed to have access to civilian US courts during wartime.

These are five Supreme Court Justices that have seriously endangered the American people today:  John Paul Stevens, Stephen Breyer, David Souter, Anthony Kennedy, and Ruth “Biddy” Ginsberg.

These are four Supreme Court Justices still believe in the worth of the Executive and Legislative Branch to protect the American people during wartime:  Chief Justice John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, and Samuel Alito.

Never in our 232 year history has the American government under either the Articles of Confederation or the Constitution has allowed foreign combatants held overseas access to civilian courts during wartime… until today.  It is not just a defeat of the Bush Administration, but also for Congress, national security and by extension the American people.

Why should habeas corpus apply to non-Americans during wartime on those who tried to kill Americans and were taken on the battlefield?  This is a horribly dangerous precedent — we didn’t even allow Nazis that privilege!!!  What if some of the evidence against the terrorists is classified or involved in ongoing intelligence operations?  Don’t the detainees have the right to have that evidence used or brought up in open court?  The slippery slope potential is uncanny and not in our best interest. 

President Bush is in a position to make a magnanimous gesture for the sake of posterity and NOT enforce this ruling under his watch.  Yet, he will abide and we will suffer in the long-run.  Congress passed and the President signed the current law into effect in 2006, clarifying the law as the Supreme Court asked them too.  This is an example of “legislation from the bench” if anything ever was.  In the words of Justice Scalia: “The Nation will regret what the Court has done today.”

AP photo.

Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics, War on Terror | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

Gay Marriage in California

Posted by Ryan on May 15, 2008

In a blatant example of judicial activism, the California Supreme Court today voted 4-3 to overturn the will of the people in order to impose gay marriage on the Golden State. 

If McCain nor Congressional Republicans won’t jazz up the conservative base, this should!  Marriage issues, cultural issues, judicial activism, court appointments, etc. are all at play here. 

AP photo.

Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Media Bias, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 6 Comments »

Hey Voter, Show Me Your ID!

Posted by Ryan on April 28, 2008

The Roberts Court ruled today that Indiana’s Voter ID law is constitutional in a 6-3 decision by amply justifying that IDs  serve “the valid interest in protecting ‘the integrity and reliability of the electoral process,'” according to the majority.

I’ll let you guess which three were in the minority…

Give up? 

Stephen “International Law” Breyer, Ruth “Biddy” Ginsburg, and David “Don’t Tax My View” Souter, of course!

I totally agree with this decision.  Unlike Indiana, New Jersey does not require photo IDs at the polling station.  Yet, when I do vote I always make sure to take out my ID and politely ask a loud question, “Do you need to see my ID?” so that everyone can hear.  I get kudos every time.  The Decision does not make states require ID verification, but it allows them to choose.  I guess this is one “pro-choice” decision the Libs won’t like!

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Supreme Court Smacks Bush, Mexicans, World Court

Posted by Ryan on March 25, 2008

The Supreme Court voted 6-3 today to strike down President Bush’s adherence to a 1963 International Treaty where aliens caught committing a crime must be aware that they are entitled to legal counsel/advice when tried in American courts.  In today’s case, Medellin v. Texas (2008), the defendant argued that he was not made aware of this detail after his arrest (even though he submitted a hand-written confession after killing two girls in 1993).  After Mexico sued the USA over the issue in 2003, the International Court of Justice in 2004 said that the Mexicans (fifty in all around the US) must be given a new trial if such counsel could affect their cases. 

Today the Mexicans lost.

Roberts, Alito, Scalia, Thomas, Stevens, and Kennedy were in the majority who believed that:

The president may not “establish binding rules of decision that pre-empt contrary state law.” Neither does the treaty, by itself, require individual states to take action.

Breyer, Ruth Biddy, and Souter dissented citing the primacy of international treaties over American law:

“The nation may well break its word even though the president seeks to live up to that word,” wrote Breyer.

One of the points that Justice Stevens brings up is that Texas could, at any time, give Medellin a new trial.  Yet he ruled with the majority because he believes that Texas may not be compelled to give him a new trial; Texas law taking precedent over the ICJ order which was being enforced by the chief executive in violation of state sovereignty

I agree with this decision and appreciate how the court was defending federalism, states’ rights, and preventing a precedent whereby the World Court could on future occasions dictate what American courts and states can or cannot do.

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Know When To Fold ‘Em. If Not, Sue

Posted by Mike on March 12, 2008

I stumbled across this article about Graham Calvert, a compulsive gambler from the UK who took his bookie to court, blaming him for the two million pounds he lost, declining health, and damaged marriage. What struck me was that the article did not even suggest that the gambler himself might actually be responsible for the choices he made.

When debating liberals about issues of personal responsibility, I often hear that they do in fact support personal responsibility before they go off on why a certain person should not be held personally responsible. My liberal friends are at least aware of the concept of personal responsibility. It’s a little frightening that the concept didn’t even cross this AP reporter’s mind.

Posted in Culture, Europe, Judicial Watch, Media Bias | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Scalia Talks Torture on the Beeb

Posted by Ryan on February 12, 2008

The BBC recently interviewed Justice Antonin Scalia.  The highlights were just great to hear from an American Justice, with sentiments that make me proud to support Constitutional Originalism

Scalia scoffed at the “living document” interpretation of the Constitution, as well as the notion that the Constitution doesn’t allow for a “smack… in the face” during a ticking-time-bomb interrogation scenario.  I agree with the likes of Abraham Lincoln and many others who noted throughout our history that the Constitution is not a suicide pact.  Scalia also defended the death penalty, scoffing at Europe’s snobbery when he said: “If you took a public opinion poll, if all of Europe had representative democracies that really worked, most of Europe would probably have the death penalty today.”

Nice!

I love Scalia!  We need three more of him up there, and unfortunately that’s absolutely not going to happen if the Dems win in this November.  That in and of itself may push me to vote for McCain this Fall.

AP photo.

Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics | 4 Comments »

It Depends on the Method to the Madness

Posted by Mike on November 22, 2007

This abortion story from Texas is merely a narrower example of the faulty logic underlying our nation’s laws against murder. In most states, murder is illegal except when the victim is located in his or her mother’s womb. In Texas, the exception to murder laws no longer depends merely on location (the womb), but on location coupled with method. Murdering an unborn child in Texas is now a crime, except when the mother chooses to visit a doctor and employ one of several brutal method to end her child’s life. Then its just another lifestyle choice and Constitutional right written in invisible ink.

It’s a shame this argument is taking longer than it should, but it is becoming increasingly clear that abortion is simply the brutal taking of another human life.

Posted in Culture, Judicial Watch, Politics | 1 Comment »

The Court’s Literacy Test

Posted by Mike on November 20, 2007

The Second Amendment is a topic the Supreme Court usually doesn’t touch, but that is about to change. Due to the D.C. Circuit’s decision to overturn our capital city’s ineffective ban on handguns, the Supremes have decided to give themselves a literacy test. The text of the Second Amendment is 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.”  It seems simple enough.  The first part of the sentence is the reason for enacting the operative portion contained in the second part of the sentence.

However, these are Supreme Court Justices we’re talking about.  Reading comprehension was never their strong suit.  Like Hot Air, I’m pessimistic about this case.  Four Justices have shown that they are hellbent on ignoring the text of the Constitution.  Couple that lot with Justice Kennedy, who tends to read the Constitution and New York Times editorial page together as the law of land, and there is a potential that the Second Amendment may no longer mean what it says.

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | Leave a Comment »

Spanish Judge Misjudges His Own Authority

Posted by Mike on October 22, 2007

The United States does not have a monopoly on out-of-control judges.  Take Spain for example.  A Spanish judge recently ordered the Catholic Church to cancel a Valencia man’s baptism certificate.  The Curt Jester rightly questions the court’s jurisdiction and suggests that the man seek out “John the Debaptizer” instead.  Heh.

In all seriousness though, I wonder how long it will take Justice Breyer to try to cite this Spanish decision as binding persuasive authority here in the U.S.?

Posted in Europe, Judicial Watch, Religion | 1 Comment »

Clarence Thomas Speaks

Posted by Ryan on October 2, 2007

60 Minutes aired the first interview of Justice Thomas on Sunday and my interest in him was piqued.  When I heard that he had a ninety-minute interview on Rush (before all the “phony soldiers” nonsense) and then an exclusive interview with Sean Hannity, I was excited.  I heard the 60 Minutes interview and the Hannity interview.  I was absolutely glued to the screen.  It was almost surreal thinking that, “wow, this is really Clarence Thomas,” conservative justice, the only African American justice, the fourth vote to toss out Roe v. Wade, and always very far from the spotlight– more than any other justice in my lifetime. 

I remembered the confirmation hearings back in 1991– and that’s about it from Justice Thomas.  I remember the Anita Hill hearings, I remember the lambasting that Thomas gave the Senate committee for their behavior during those confirmation hearings, but I didn’t remember what his voice really sounded like, who he is as a person, and that there’s something behind being one of those nine black-robed figures that interpret the Constitution on the issues of the day.  I knew he was conservative, but not how he became a conservative.  These strong of interviews help illuminate who this highly influential man is– a strong black man who rose through the ranks to be one of the nine most powerful people in our nation.  It’s an amazing story worth checking out.

Pic from the Image Library.

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | 5 Comments »

Alberto Gonzales Resigns

Posted by Ryan on August 27, 2007

Embattled Attorney General and long-time Bush friend Alberto Gonzales has tendered his resignation this morning amid endless investigation and controversy.  He will stay on until September 17.  Solicitor General Paul Clement will serve as his replacement until a new one can be found.  Alberto Gonzales dug his own grave on this one.  Every member of the President’s Administration “serves at the pleasure of the President.”  Simple and long-standing precedent.  Had Gonzales stuck to this statement from the beginning of this Democrat witch-hunt rather than admit that those eight fired US attorneys had done something wrong and he didn’t want to get into it, he might still have his job and we’d have moved onto another in a slew of Democrat investigations into whatever.  The press was fueling the flames and the Democrats could smell blood and weakness from the Administration.  RINOs like Arlen Specter didn’t help either, jumping on the bandwagon (that’s what happens, Mr. Bush, when you support a Specter over a Toomey!). 

The Attorney General’s post is unfortunately a political post and Gonzales needed to defend himself and the Administration better.  All allegations of wrong-doing, 1000s of pages of documents, 100s of emails, dozens of witnesses could not find anything against Gonzales, yet he’s the one resigning.  Having been abandoned by the Administration early and using the August recess as cover, Gonzales leaves permanently marred by the Democrat witch-hunt and with a long-time friend in the President who didn’t really help.  By the way, the Dems have vowed to continue their investigation.

AP photo.

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | 2 Comments »

Rudy Giuliani Forms Judicial Advisory Committee

Posted by Mike on July 16, 2007

Rudy Giuliani plans to announce his “Judicial Advisory Committee” later this week in an attempt to alleviate conservatives rightly concerned about his views on abortion and his thus far pathetic defense of those views. The panel will be chaired by Ted Olson and will include strict constructionist superstar Miguel Estrada. This is an encouraging sign if Olson and Estrada are on board with Giuliani. No one can credibly challenge their credentials on the role of the judiciary.

Aside from the obvious superiority over She Who Must Not Be Named on terrorism and foreign affairs, Giuliani is also more likely than her to appoint more strict constructionists to the bench. The pool of judges from which he would select his nominees would be Republican and he would be surrounded with people like Olson and Estrada when making his decision. Allowing SWMNBN to park her broom on the White House lawn would guarantee that John Roberts would be surrounded with several Ruth Biddy Ginsburg disciples for decades. Faced with the SWMNBN guarantee, I’d settle for the Giuliani gamble. Saving the unborn and restoring the Constitution are more important than sending a message.

For that dilemma to have any meaning though, Giuliani first has to win the primary, which let’s face it is the real reason he is forming this committee.  Winning the primary however will not be an easy task for the Mayor, nor should it be. His previous explanations of his jurisprudence are nothing short of troubling. While his name dropping has been fine (he supported the Scalia, Alito, and Roberts nominations), his belief that a strict constructionist judge could uphold or overturn Roe v. Wade still shows an ignorance of Constitutional law that is difficult to explain away to people who have read the Constitution.

Giuliani’s problem is that he is a pro-choice candidate in a pro-life party. This issue is literally a matter of life and death. Because he might nominate decent judges, conservatives should take a chance and support the Mayor if he gets through the primary. However because he might nominate decent judges, conservatives should not take a chance and allow him to get through the primary.

As for this committee, it will help a little bit, but not with those who appreciated God’s take on the subject.

Link via Lucianne

Posted in Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics | 3 Comments »

Supreme Court Rejects Discrimination

Posted by Ryan on June 28, 2007

One of the Roberts Court’s latest 5-4 decisions ends racial discrimination against children in local areas that force them to go to different schools based on the child’s race in order to promote “diversity.” While this doesn’t close the book on using race as a basis for school enrollment on the college level, as Justice Kennedy notes in the article, the Louisville, KY, and Seattle, WA, cases deal with local school districts that are afraid of “re-segregation,” but have no Constitutional basis for their actions since it violated the 14th Amendment’s “equal protection” clause. Louisville parents and

While an undersandable fear in certain parts of the country, as a teacher I can tell you that this has less to do with race, and more to do with inept school board officials and ineffective principals. At the time of the landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision, the basic ideas promoting the need for school integration had to do with the geography of the children in relation to their schools and the obvious inequality of the “separate but equal” nonsense of Plessy (1896) in the child’s education.

If in 2007 there is a need to bus children to another part of town to promote “diveristy” if the schools have had a noticeable achievement gap, this has nothing to do with “diversity” and more to do with highly paid people who don’t want to do their jobs for fear of looking unpopular for making tough decisions at the highest level of the school district’s administration. I see it all the time here in Central New Jersey– inept administrators blaming their demographics for decades of poor performance, looking for more hand-outs from the federal government, and being reelected on understanding the plight of the children and poor poor town. Cutting throughth he nonsense, the child should go to the closest school, and those in charge of the district and school should do whatever they can in order to make that school excel, be it a black or white or mixed-race school. It’s a little ridiculous to be having this argument in 2007. Maybe that’s my post-Civil Rights movement Gen-X attitude talking.

Either way, I’m please with this ruling, but it also reinforces the notion that a President’s judicial picks are so important– in 2003 a similar case lost on a 5-4 vote in relations to college admissions.

Posted in Culture, Judicial Watch, Politics | 3 Comments »

Speech Restriction Aborted

Posted by Mike on June 25, 2007

Dog bit man at the Supreme Court today when the Court actually applied the First Amendment, holding that restrictions preventing a pro-life group from running issue ads prior to an election are unconstitutional, even if the ad in question references a candidate. The ruling was obviously 5-4, with the five justices who have actually read the Constitution applying the document’s First Amendment while the other four were lost somewhere in the shadow of a penumbra. Thanks to the arrival of Justice Alito, it now looks like the Constitution is making a comeback.

There was a division in the majority that deserves mention however because it highlights how Justices can have good faith disagreements while honestly applying the Constitution in cases where important values of Constitutional interpretation clash. In striking down the restriction in question, Justices Thomas, Scalia, and Kennedy all voted to overturn the provision of McCain-Feingold barring ads prior to an election. Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito however, limited their holding to the statute as applied to this particular type of case. Although these different approaches did not affect the case’s holding, both advanced principles necessary to Constitutional governance.

In today’s ruling, Justices Thomas, Scalia, and Kennedy upheld the principle that the courts cannot apply statutes contrary to the U.S. Constitution. The statute in question, McCain-Feingold, prohibits issue and political advertisements prior to an election despite the clear Constitutional requirement that

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, . . . (emphasis added)

The provision in question directly violated the Constitution because it was passed by Congress (McCain-Feingold) and abridged the right to freedom of speech by restricting said speech during campaign season. By straightforwardly applying the Constitution as written, Scalia, Thomas, and Kennedy ensured that the document will continue to have meaning. Since the Constitution is the document which protects our God-given liberties, ensuring its meaning is a good thing.

Another important principle in Constitutional law is that the court must limit itself to the case or controversy before it. For decades now, liberal judicial activists have used their power to issue rulings that greatly exceeded the scope of the cases before them. Since they couldn’t advance their socialist agenda via the ballot box, this was the next best thing. Unfortunately for our nation, the Constitution grew more and more meaningless with every ruling.

Today, Roberts and Alito signaled their intent to reverse this activism by limiting their ruling today to striking down the restriction as applied. If the Court maintains this new commitment to restraint, it will be far more difficult to use the court as another policy-making branch and there will be fewer invented rights, which upon closer inspection are often not rights at all. Just ask the unborn.

Although both wings of the Constitutionalist majority restored two important principles today, the Scalia-Thomas-Kennedy approach was more appropriate. The restriction in question only came about because of an unconstitutional statutory provision. It was that provision that those who would abridge free speech (John McCain) rely upon. Striking down that provision entirely would have been appropriate because it would have advanced both the principle that the Constitution is supreme and that the court must limit itself to cases and controversies before it.

I know this seems like hair splitting, but the distinction between the good-faith approaches is important. President Bush did his country a tremendous service by nominating John Roberts and Samuel Alito. It is clear that both are committed to supporting the Constitution. However, their approach to doing so thus far tell me that neither Roberts nor Alito are in the same league as Scalia and Thomas. Thankfully though, they are not in the same universe as Breyer, Souter, Stevens and Ruth Biddy. In the end, that is what is really important.

Posted in Judicial Watch | 2 Comments »

Know Your Role

Posted by Mike on May 30, 2007

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is confused. I don’t mean confused in the way most liberals are, though she is. What I’m talking about is Ruth Biddy’s confusion over her role in our government. Perhaps it’s her age. Perhaps it’s her arrogance. Whatever the reason, Ginsburg seems to think she is a member of Congress.

Along with her three liberal colleagues, Ginsburg recently dissented in the Supreme Court’s Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co decision which held that a woman’s discrimination claim which arose 19 years earlier was barred by the statute of limitations. Hysterical over being outvoted by Justices who read the statute in question, Ginsburg read her dissent from the bench which called on Congress to enact legislation reflecting her policy preference which she tried to enact from the bench.

Trying to persuade the government to enact what one believes in is perfectly legitimate. What is not legitimate is when judges attempt to use their position to enact their own policy preferences. A judge’s job is to rule on what the law is, not what they wish it to be. If Ginsburg wants to serve in a policy making position, she should run for Congress.

Since that will never happen, Ginsburg should at least look to the Court’s most junior member for some guidance on how to do her job. Writing for the majority in Ledbetter, Justice Alito explained the judiciary’s role in our government:

“We apply the statute as written, and this means that any unlawful employment practice, including those involving compensation, must be presented . . . within the period prescribed by the statute,” Alito said.

Alito seems to know his role. It’s about time Ruth Biddy learned hers.

Posted in Judicial Watch | Leave a Comment »

Emanations and Penumbras — The slippery slope argument starts to show merit

Posted by Sal on May 2, 2007

When the Supreme Court ruled in Lawrence v. Texas that states could no longer punish sodomy (based on the so-called “right to privacy” written in the “emanations and penumbras” of the Constitution), many said that this would lead to a slippery slope to legalize bigamy, incest, prostitution, etc., can all be said to be a right based on the decision of Lawrence (although the court has not yet specifically stated it).  Many who pointed out the slippery slope at the time were labeled as homophobes for this view.  Now, it seems, people are challenging these other laws on the basis of Lawrence’s statement that private sexual conduct cannot be regulated.  There is a pending court case attempting to legalize adult incest on the basis of Lawrence.  The case involves an Ohio man convicted for having sex with his 22-year old stepdaughter.  He lost in the court of appeals, and will probably lose in the Supreme Court (but who knows with the likes of Kennedy, Stevens, Breyer, Ginsburg, and Souter), but how long before a movement builds to legalize adult incest and keeps pushing the court?  Under the theory of “emanations and penumbras”, the court can find anything, change its mind, ignore two hundred years of precedence and suddenly find a new right written in the “emanations and penumbras”!  Lawrence itself was completely at odds with an earlier decision from 1986, Bowers v. Hardwick.  Stare Decisis, a principle which the left claims to cherish when it comes to Roe v. Wade, was completely ignored when it came to Bowers.  The trend lines are clear, and they show a move to legalize all forms of sexual deviancy.  It may not happen this year with this case, but unless current trends are reversed, it is inevitable. 

On a side note, Justice Scalia’s dissent from Lawrence is one of his classic dissents, and is worth a read.  It can be found here

Posted in Culture, Europe, Judicial Watch, Politics | 2 Comments »

Roberts Dissents

Posted by Mike on April 26, 2007

Although Justice Scalia is the undisputed master of witty dissents, he may soon have a run for his money. Yesterday, the Supreme Court, by a vote of 5-4, struck down three death penalty cases in Abdul-Kabir v. Quarterman. Writing the dissent for the four Justices who have actually read the Constitution, Chief Justice Roberts slammed Justice Stevens for the latter’s absurd reliance on his own dissenting opinions as established law and reminded the 85 year old that what goes around comes around.

We know Scalia would have had a field day with Stevens, but on this occasion he deferred to the Chief. Although no one can touch Scalia in the art of dissent, deferring to Roberts was the right thing to do. How else is he going to learn?

Posted in Judicial Watch | Leave a Comment »

McCain-Feingold Watch

Posted by Sal on April 25, 2007

Oral arguments were held today in the Supreme Court for the case FEC v. Wisconsin Right to Lifeinvolve ads that WRL wanted to run during the 2004 election cycle urging Russ Feingold to support a piece of Pro-life legislation.  This ad fell under McCain-Feingold’s draconian 60-day rule, and was not allowed to be aired.  The case is now before the SCOTUS, and both Roberts and Scalia appear to be itching to overturn the 2003 decision McConnell v. Federal Election Commission.  In 2003, it was Rehnquist, Scalia, Thomas and Kennedy dissenting against Ginsburg, Souter, Stevens, Breyer, and O’Connor.  During arguments, Roberts expressed disdain for restrictions on speech, so the crux of where this ruling will come down appears to fall on Justice Alito.  Given his seeming preference for narrow rulings as opposed to the broad overturning of cases, I predict that the case will allow ads such as the one presented in this case, but will fall short of overturning McConnell

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | 3 Comments »

Victory for Life

Posted by Sal on April 18, 2007

The Supreme Court today, in a 5-4 decision, upheld the federal ban on Partial-birth abortions.  Kennedy, Scalia, Thomas, Roberts, and Alito were in the majority, while Ginsburg, Souter, Stevens, and Breyer dissented.  This is a major victory for the Pro-life cause as it bans a gruesome procedure which can only be described as barbaric.  It also is a victory for those who believe in an originalist view of the Constitution. 

This shows why elections matter.  Two of the five judges upholding the law were Bush-appointees, one of whom replaced the more liberal Sandra Day O’Connor, who voted in 2000 to strike down a partial-birth abortion ban.  One only hopes that either Stevens or Ginsburg retires this summer, giving Bush one more pick.  As it stands, President Bush’s greatest legacy may well be his shifting of the court back towards its proper role.  It’s not there yet, but it’s on its way. 

Posted in Judicial Watch, Politics | 5 Comments »