The Media’s New Favorite Supreme Court

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Chief Justice John Roberts’ incredible and pusillanimous decision to rule Obamacare constitutional last week prompted many responses. There were those conservatives, like me, who saw this as the final blow to the notion that the Constitution matters to lawmakers and the Court – a capper to the Era of Big Government run amok. To us, the decision was nakedly political; there was no possible way to read Obamacare as anything other than an individual mandate; after all, President Obama himself had denied that it was a tax.

There were those conservatives who suggested that the Roberts decision was some sort of brilliant gimmick designed to avoid handing Barack Obama an election issue, and circumscribe expansion of the Commerce Clause. These commentators, too, thought the decision was political – just from another angle.

And then there was the left.

The left hated Chief Justice John Roberts. Because he was a political conservative – and because political conservatives are typically originalists who don’t believe in random expansion of government powers under the Constitution – the left saw him as a political actor. They decried his nomination. They said his Court was partisan, hell-bent on instituting conservatism by non-democratic means.

Until he ruled.

Then, all of a sudden, he was sweetness and light. The day of the ruling, the New York Times ran an editorial stating, “[Roberts] has said that he has wanted to restore the court’s reputation and reduce partisan language. But he was seen by many, at least on the left, as more devoted to conservative politics than to the purity of the law. That could change.”

Bloomberg News crowed, “With a single vote supporting President Barack Obama’s health-care law, Republican-appointed Chief Justice John Roberts asserted his independence and defused claims that partisanship rules the Supreme Court.”

Wild leftist Bob Shrum wrote in the Daily Beast, “John Roberts may have forgotten the oath of office when he administered it to Barack Obama; he remembered his oath when he decided this case. Indeed maybe it is possible that Al Gore would have been president if Roberts had been chief justice in 2000. Yes, I know that he was part of the Bush legal team in Florida, but that is not the point. Given his politics, I am certain that Roberts would not have voted to pass health reform. But he did vote to uphold it; he did what a judge is supposed to do—follow the law, not his own politics.”

Forgive me if I do not trust such liberals’ crocodile smiles. While Lawrence Tribe of Harvard Law School may tout that Roberts ruled apolitically in this case, the evidence is that he did anything but – and Tribe knows it. Actually, rumors abound that Roberts switched his vote shortly before the ruling in order to appease certain political forces. But over time, there is no doubt that the Obamacare ruling will come to be seen just as Roe v. Wade is: as a political ruling that, even for the left, is embarrassing on a legal basis.

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  • Reason_For_Life

    Researching Roberts' past to find something of his previous philosophy I discovered a remarkable statement by constitutional scholar and lawyer Randy Barnett. He stated, back in 2006 just before Roberts' confirmation hearings that he (Barnett) had been unable to find a single speech or law review article by Roberts that revealed anything about the justice's legal philosophy. Roberts had only been a judge for a few years yet now, he was being pushed by the Bush Administration to serve as Chief Justice.

    Roberts was an enigma wrapped in a mystery as far as his fundamental legal philosophy was concerned. Despite this, or more likely because of this, he was selected by Bush. Possibly, the Bush administration wanted someone with no paper trail to be challenged during the hearings.

    The claims that Roberts was a "bullet proof conservative" seem to have been made with absolutely no factual basis. Hugh Hewitt's ecstatic ravings about Roberts being a "home run" are incomprehensible since Hewitt is a lawyer and should have known better. Hewitt had interviewed Jay Seculow from the American Center for Law and Justice who also praised Roberts as a "consistent conservative". Hewitt still insists that Roberts' decision will be seen to be a brilliant on in two to five years.

    How someone could believe that it is consistent with the principles of the Founders to limit the power of the Commerce Clause by creating an unlimited power to tax can only be explained by the use of large quantities of controlled substances.

    If there is a silver lining to this decision you can be sure that there will be a tax imposed on it.

    • Fred Dawes

      with a court like this we can understand who the enemy really is. Roberts is just one more monkey, by the way the real USA Is long dead.

    • WildJew

      Roberts had no paper trail? Interesting. Thanks.

      "Hewitt still insists that Roberts' decision will be seen to be a brilliant on in two to five years."

      I am convinced that this is how we get nightmares in the White House like Barack Hussein Obama. "My" side stands by and defends our traitors.

  • Fred Dawes

    The next move will be to illegalize slavery and the people on that Supreme Monkey Court would call it a just thing and good for the people of this supreme monkey nation, after all to declare slavery in force would be a good thing for all our little monkeys in the hope some will do well for the Masters Globalists and the puppet Government of total monkeys.

    We may as well be raped in a jail cell with a court like this. ( :- (

    • WildJew

      I think we just did (legalize slavery) to a certain extent. It's called Obamacare.

  • WildJew

    Mr. Shapiro wrote: "Actually, rumors abound that Roberts switched his vote shortly before the ruling IN ORDER TO APPEASE certain political forces…"

    There is much wisdom found in the law of Moses pertaining to the appointment of judges. For example, there is this in the first chapter of the book of Deuteronomy.

    "Then I charged your judges at that time, saying, 'Hear the cases between your fellow countrymen, and judge righteously between a man and his fellow countryman, or the alien who is with him.

    'You shall not show partiality in judgment; you shall hear the small and the great alike. YOU SHALL NOT FEAR MAN (emphasis mine), for the judgment is God's. The case that is too hard for you, you shall bring to me, and I will hear it.'

  • scum

    I'm selling tickets to Canada.

  • tagalog

    I don't want any Supreme Court judges who are political, whether left or right, and I don't want someone who's going to be brilliant in two or three years. I want justices who will read the law (unlike Justice Scalia, who pooh-poohed reading the Obamacare statute during oral argument two or three months ago) and be brilliant NOW.

    • Rifleman

      I agree, except I think they should strike down any law that large and incomplete as a de facto attempt to subvert the Constitution. There's absolutely no reason for a 1000+ page law.

      • tagalog

        Yeah, a bill that's 2700 pages long should be found to be unconstitutional as cruel and unusual punishment to read before it ever gets to the point where it might become a law. I bet you could count the number of people who have read the Obamacare statute from beginning to end on the fingers of one hand.

      • Jim_C

        Well, if ever there were a horse designed by committee…

    • WildJew

      When you say you don't want any Judges who are political, don't you mean partisan? Everything is political. How can you take politics out of judging things unless by political you mean a Justice who is partisan and / or self-serving. You say you want a Justice who will read the law. But many activist judges have "read the law," haven't they. It seems to me (Federalist) Chief Justice John Marshall read the law yet he was the one who built a powerful federal government through his reading of the law, wasn't he?

  • WildJew

    Mr. Shapiro wrote: "In reality, the Court’s not supposed to be conservative or liberal. It’s supposed to be constitutional, worried only about the letter of the Constitution and whether government is acting within its prescribed bounds…."

    Here is my problem with "the court is not supposed to be conservative or liberal; it’s supposed to be constitutional" argument. America's founders, according to my reading, were generally politically conservative (albeit there might have been one or two big / expansive-government types; I am thinking of Alexander Hamilton) but nothing like the contemporary left we see today.

    Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Franklin, etc. were generally conservative as I read history. I am not a legal scholar yet I know, big-government proponents both on and off the Court used things like the "Necessary and Proper" and the "General Welfare" clauses to justify an ever-expansive, more intrusive government. My guess is, not one of these Justice is politically neutral; that is without some philosophical or political worldview.

    The left demands Republican presidents not have a "litmus test" for our appointees (that they be politically neutral) but do you think Democratic presidents have no litmus test when we hear Democrats constantly say they will never nominate a Justice who is not "pro-choice" or pro-abortion rights?

    Clearly Obama appointed two radicals, two partisans in Sotomayor and Kagan.

    • fiddler

      And Kagan should have recused herself.

      • WildJew

        Right but had Roberts not (as Limbaugh is saying) "broke faith," it would not have mattered. I wonder what kind of scrutiny, if any, the Bush White House gave this traitor, Roberts. A turncoat is always a turncoat. Roberts is a turncoat from his youth. These things don't just happen when a man matures. Why is it so hard to find good, solid judges like Scalia and Thomas (maybe Alito)? What gives?

      • Jim_C

        Why? She had nothing to do with the ACA. Should Thomas and Scalia also recused themselves?

        She did, however, recuse herself in the recent Arizona case because she did actually work with that issue in the Justice Dept.

  • Rifleman

    I guess we can consider the Federalist #41 and the Founding Fathers buried until the next great free republic resurrects them.

    • mlcblog

      Yup! but we can still put up a fight and hope for a miracle. It's too soon to quit.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

    The media always did like someone that follows the approved 'script'.

    I wonder what the chicago Machine did to bring Roberts to heel.

    • WildJew

      Someone forwarded this piece from anti-jihad activist Ann Barnhardt; the woman who burned a Qur'an live on Youtube and then gave out her address.

      It's a little rough. Maybe it is accurate.

      STUPID, STUPID JACKASSES. PART 1
      POSTED BY ANN BARNHARDT – JUNE 30, AD 2012 3:32 PM MST

      …..Roberts is a moral degenerate lifetime Washington D.C. politico, who is well known in the beltway to be borderline obsessed with his image. In other words, Chief Justice John Roberts emotionally operates on the same level as the average twelve year old girl, and just sold out not just the Republic, the Constitution and the entire American populace, but really the entire planet, because now that the United States is no more, the forces of evil will run absolutely rampant over the rest of the planet. And Roberts did it so that a bunch of coke-snorting sodomites and psychopaths in Georgetown will pretend to like him – for about five minutes…."
      http://www.barnhardt.biz/

  • clarespark

    Just a reminder that the Progressive movement was bipartisan. I wrote about four types of authoritarian states here, and it seems relevant to the Roberts decision: http://clarespark.com/2012/06/29/the-neutered-sta…. It is up to us to rally around constitutionalism in November, with no kvetching about Romney's record as governor.

  • Jim_C

    What hysterics. So Roberts is suddenly, "mysteriously" in Obama's pocket? Give me a break.

    Don't like Obamacare? Get someone else elected…like maybe a governor who has changed every major stance he's ever held, who set up a very similar plan on his state.

    • WildJew

      Maybe not "in Obama's pocket," yet Roberts handed Obama and the left a victory, didn't he?

      I didn't vote for Romney here in our Fla. primary but what choice to we have this November? I was making the case for one of Romney's opponents throughout the primary but the so-called Republican Establishment, radio talk show host Michael Savage, Elliot Abrams, etc., set out to destroy Romney's opponents and Romney won. Even Limbaugh wouldn't tell his listeners / callers he would vote for someone more conservative than Mitt Romney. Limbaugh remained essentially neutral.

      The best I can expect from Romney is to slow down this assault on our nation and our freedoms. To my knowledge, unlike Obama, Romney is not anti-America. Romney does not appear to be a dedicated anti-Semite. Romney does not seem to be anti-business, unlike Obama. I am watching what I have worked and saved much of my adult life wither under Obama.

      Do you really think we should stay home this November or vote for a third party candidate, thus helping Obama win re-election?

      • Jim_C

        It's not necessarily a victory for the Left; now the election really becomes a referendum on Obama. I think there would have been a pretty powerful populist outcry if the court had swung conservative yet again. After Bush v. Gore and Citizens United the credibility of the SCOTUS would have been shot–fairly or unfairly, as David Horowitz points out.

        That said, I can't be certain Roberts was thinking of politics.

        Should Romney be elected, watch for him to repeal Obamacare in name, then re-institute most of it with a different marketing plan.

  • kendrick1

    This upcoming election will produce no different conditions if we don't get out and campaign! Donate! Go door to door! Ask people to vote! Ask if they are registered to vote! Register them yourself! Drive them to the polls! A click of the mouse won’t do it! We can't just sit at our internet! We may not have it much longer if we get a Deja Vu!!!

    I don’t want to live on my knees, do you?

    If we don't quit straightening the deck chairs while the ship is sinking, I'm afraid our nation is sick to death!!

  • Willy Rho

    To give the decision any real tenacity requires Roberts to be on the Liberal side. The powers that rule the World gave him the choice Gold or Lead. This is how they always operate. The easy way to steer 10 Trillion dollars over the next 10 years is to pay a Traitor a Couple of Billion. That is seen all the time in this world and yes in this country too. Example: Viagra patent extended another 7 years after being extended for 2 years. That is about 12 Billion dollars from profit for Pfizer's. Do you suppose that judge might have gotten a few Bucks in an offshore account or do you think the Ruling was, as Messiah in chief said, "It is the Right Thing to Do". Anyway, You judge for us or all your family dies horrible deaths and if you do judge for us, a Billion dollars a year will be put in an Offshore account as long as you live.

  • mlcblog

    Some of us are conjecturing that it was the strong arm of Chicago-style politics that arrived with a threat to Justice Roberts which caused him to reconsider his stand at the last hour.

    • Jim_C

      And that will be all you'll ever have regarding this–your own conjecture.

      Whatever turns you on!

      • mlcblog

        That's right. It's all conjecture including that he is a nut case off his meds.

        We will never know what really happened though I am hearing many authoritative guesses from all sides of the political spectrum.

        I just thought the Chicago thugs was too colorful to resist sharing. Oops!! too amusing.

  • Schlomotion

    Mr. Shapiro is whining that he didn't like the Supreme Court ruling. Really, the imagined web of political machinations, rumors, and speculative last minute changes are moot. The decision is the decision. The Supreme Court does not consult Mr. Shapiro in order to make a ruling. In order for that to happen, Mr. Shapiro would have to become a good lawyer, then an excellent lawyer, then earn an appointment to the Supreme Court. Until then, waaaa and boo hoo.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

      He isn't complaining that he doesn't like. You always try to spin things to their most absurd.

      He's explaining how flawed it is.

      • Schlomotion

        Sure he is. He's trying to Monday Morning Quarterback the Supreme Court based on his personal preferences and definitely with no credentials to do so. You on the other hand are simply a flea trying to run interference for a Monday Morning Quarterback. Your position is more ridiculous, since there is no game.

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

          Sure he's not. If you have facts then lay them out.

          If you're just here to whine then expect to be treated like it.

        • Touchstone

          "definitely with no credentials"

          Someone with a Harvard Law degree, a widely read political column, and several published books has credentials. Even more so when one considers that he began his political column at a very young age.

          And since when are published commentators not permitted to comment? Since when is a columnist not allowed to write a column on the most momentous legal decision of the age?

          Since you declared he's not, that's when. Like a (self-unaware) fascist, you apply muzzles to people you don't like. The whining here is actually being done by you, not Shapiro. You're the one mewling that the brat whose neck you want to ring asserted himself and spoke up again.

          Freedom of speech. Waaaa. Freedom of the press. Boo hoo.

    • Maxie

      Just curious – how does one 'earn' an appointment to the Court? What is the process and criteria? It's most certainly involves politics.

      • Schlomotion

        The President nominates potential Supreme Court justices, then the Senate approves the selection by a majority vote. It's called appointment with advice and consent of the Senate. There are no Constitutional requirements but the American Bar Association recommends that nominees be a member in good standing in the state bar for at least five years, a practicing trial attorney and/or trial judge for at least 12 years, a competent citizen of good character, integrity, reason, intelligence, and judgment with distinguished accomplishments and also a legal scholar.

        My point was that unlike the Supreme Court Justice he vilifies, Mr. Shapiro has not been a practicing trial attorney or judge for 12 years, and is not a competent citizen of good character, integrity, reason, intelligence, or judgment with distinguished accomplishments.

        Even lacking all of that, I doubt he could muster a 51% Senate approval.

  • Ronald Johnston

    roberts should be impeached!!! He took an oath to strictly interpret the Constitution, not write new laws from the bench! The other 4 yellow-bellys should also be impeached. They all took the oath and are breaking the law of the land!!!!

    • WildJew

      I think you mean he should resign. If we were to impeach Supreme Court Justices for not strictly interpreting the Constitution, or for writing new laws from the bench, my guess at least half of our nation's Supreme Court Justices should have been impeached. The thing is most leftists want their president to appoint Justices who write new laws from the bench. They want Judicial activists. It is incumbent on ours to appoint "strict constructionist," conservative, non-activist Judges, which leads me to wonder what sort of investigation Bush and his people conducted on Roberts. Clearly he is a traitor and always was traitor to conservative principles.

  • fiddler

    And narry a peep about Elena Kagan's conflict of interest by not recusing herself. Naw, when it comes to rules, the left always exempts itself.

  • Maxie

    If Roberts was trying to appease Leftists with his decision he's a fool on two counts. The first is that it's impossible to appease the Left. They are idelogical fanatics and will not rest until we become a Stalinist Soviet America. The second, and more important, is that Roberts is paid to be jurist not a political engineer. He should be impeached as soon as Romney is sworn in as POTUS.

  • H&R_ Barack

    .
    Thank you! GHWB…..I am a Conservative. I don't miss you.

    Just think what havoc Harriet Ellan Miers,
    ~ or Alberto Gonzales would have wrecked on Constitutional LAW!

    Lord have Mercy!

    DAMN YOU WEAK-KNEED GOP – limp wristed "Leaders":
    Boehner, Mitch McConnell, John Cornyn (who doles monies to RINOS) -Ryan, Rove, Mitt Romney et al!

    • Jim_C

      A conservative = a grumpy crank with lots of opinions and no experience with or knowledge of government

      A RINO: a conservative who understands what governing actually entails

    • WildJew

      Amen. I agree with everything you've written. It was GWB who appointed Roberts. GHWB (GWB's father) is the one who said, "Read my lips, no new taxes."

      • H&R_ Barack

        Thank you Wild Jew. –

        Regarding Jeb…."Read my lips; No new Bush's!"

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.villano.71 Mike Villano

    Save a whale, harpoon a Lamestream Media parasite.
    They're a collection of false prophets.

  • patriotwork

    They say Chief Justice Roberts is building his legacy; he is not. He is building his infamy.

  • O_Bomber

    Looks like Roberts took some Constitutional Laws classes from Baracky, in the '90's.
    How else do you explain this travesty?
    The Left sets the agenda, Conservatives compromise.

    The ball is ALWAYS being advanced toward the marxist goal.

    Time to NOT accept their premises, and do what's right for the country..

    • Maxie

      Conservatives may compromise but RINO's just cave. First and goal, Left!

      • O_Bomber

        Time to go on offense..
        The sooner the bloated bureaucracy is dismantled the sooner freedom will return to the indivdual..(.(I think that was Jefferson.:-)..

  • mlcblog

    It's far worse than embarrassing on a legal basis, as is Roe v Wade.