I am disturbed, but not surprised by some of the comments made by Barrack Obama as regards the role of a Justice of the Supreme Court and thereby, what we will get in the replacement for Justice David Souter, who is retiring, next month. Those comments give us a frightening view of what we have in store from anyone Obama might nominate.
There are many, including the Washington Post… hardly a bastion of liberal thought… who have counseled Obama to look for judicial restraint:
Alas, the once-dominant species of liberal proponents of judicial restraint has relatively few surviving members. Obama should find them – why not Jose Cabranes, the excellent judge whom President Clinton appointed to the 2nd Circuit? – and help
The Supreme Court (Winter v. Natural Resources Defense Council) voted 5-4 to rescind bans on sonar use in training exercises off the California coast. Those bans were implemented by lower federal courts. The ruling states that the lower courts exceeded their authority in those actions.
The bans were in place presumably to protect sea life from the negative effects of sonar use… effects that have been researched by organizations like the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC). I can not speak directly to the integrity of the research, but it seems the concerns bear consideration. Perhaps not a knee-jerk response, since sonar has been in regular use for decades now, but enough careful consideration that if sea life is truly being impacted, specifically …
I finally got time to watch a recording of Saturday night’s Saddleback Church event with Obama and McCain. DJ made some excellent observations earlier in the week, which I thought I might supplement a bit. If you have not seen it yet, I strongly suggest that you view this event as I think it provides the most candid view of these candidates available to date.
I don’t really know Rick Warren that well. I have read “The Purpose Driven Life”, as have millions of others, and I did find the book helpful in my perspective on and relationship with God. I appreciate his work on that.
Rick rang a bell I’ve been tolling here from time to time… we need to find ways to engage …
Dick Heller, of DC v. Heller fame, finally got a gun permit today.
Unfortunately, that’s only part of the story.
The District is treating semi-automatic handguns as “machine guns”. So, the registration he succeeded at acquiring only allows him to have a revolver in his home.
Heller recently sued the city again, alleging that the registration rules adopted by the D.C. government after the ban was overturned are too cumbersome and violate the spirit and letter of the Supreme Court decision.
We discussed this story as the case went to the court, and as the decision was handed down.
The District is, in my opinion, doing all they can to thumb their nose at the Supreme Court on this one. We can certainly …
I am surprised I didn’t see more blogs lit up over this today (Allahpundit over at Hot Air did hit on it, though).
The Supreme Court was wrong.
That is, Anthony Kennedy, who wrote the majority opinion in Kennedy v. Louisiana, was wrong. If you recall, Kennedy wrote in his opinion (discussed here last week) that
Thirty-seven jurisdictions—36 States plus the Federal Government— currently impose capital punishment, but only six States authorize it for child rape.
Kennedy then used this fact to establish that Congress’ lack of action to enact capital punishment for child rape reflected the country’s growing desire to treat child rapists more kindly. I’m still gagging over that one.
In Wednesday’s New York Times, we find that Kennedy, along with …
Thank goodness, albeit another split decision, the court came through with a good decision. In DC v Heller, the court ruled in favor of gun ownership. We discussed this case back when arguments wrapped up in April. For those of you that are sure to argue that my position yesterday was that the court should have stayed away from the state’s right to legislate on the death penalty, one must understand that there are significant differences here.
One (death penalty) has to do with the meting out of punishment, which is certainly addressed in the 8th amendment. For that reason, the court certainly has a role in ensuring that the 8th Amendment is not abrogated. In Kennedy v Louisiana, however, the case does …
The court is wrong.
As Lyle observes, the court has been progressively narrowing the conditions under which the death penalty can be used. By itself, this is a frustrating fact as the court appears to be referencing reasons with less basis in law and more basis in their feelings. Lyle observes:
…the longer a Justice stays on the Court and watches capital cases come and go, the greater the prospect that capital punishment will lose another vote…
But more disturbing is …
In other news, the Supreme Court has now gone too far. Sister Toldjah:
Quote of the day: “The Nation will live to regret what the Court has done today.”
That was Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, in his dissent on the USSC ruling today that Gitmo detainees have habeas corpus rights.
Lyle Denniston analyzes the ruling here.
Captain Ed sums up USSC’s decision:
This will probably derail the hearings that had just begun at Gitmo for six members of the 9/11 conspiracy. By granting the unlawful combatants habeas corpus, the court has now eliminated the main reason for the military tribunal system – and for that matter, Gitmo itself. If the detainees can access American courts, they may as well be held
As disappointing as it may be, we’re closing Contest #3 without a winner.
As you may recall, the question was:
Provide the textual portion of the US Constitution that describes the well-known concept of Judicial Review, which gives the Federal Judiciary the authority to determine the constitutionality of US or State laws. Then, please name the first Justice to implement Judicial Review in the United States.
This was a trick question, since the US Constitution does not expressly give the Judiciary Branch the power to review the constitutionality of laws. This power exists based solely on the precedent set the first time it was exercised by the Supreme Court in 1803 in the case of Marbury v. Madison. John Marshall (that’s him at the left) …