Category Archives: supreme court

The Dogma Within

dogma

Amy Coney Barrett is a Notre Dame Law professor. She was nominated by President Trump for a seat on the seventh court of appeals.

But first she has to get past Senate Judiciary Committee member Diane Feinstein. The Senator wanted answers about an article Professor Coney Barrett co-authored 20 years ago. It was a meditation on what a Catholic judge might do in a capital punishment case. The authors concluded he/she should recuse.

But the professor came across as a little too Catholic for the senator. Feinstein told her, “I think in your case, professor, when you read your speeches, the conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you, and that’s of concern.”

Of course, the professor might have taken that as a compliment.

Man Bites Dogma

But no dogma lives within Senator Durbin. The apparently unorthodox Catholic senator from Illinois demanded to know if Coney Barrett is an “Orthodox” Catholic.

A WSJ opinion piece by theology professor C.C. Pecknold had this to say about the dogma:

 Mr. Durbin’s attempt to make such a distinction shows that this affair is about more than Catholicism. It is about an ideology—a politically progressive civil religion—that makes comprehensive claims to which all other religions are expected to conform.

Supreme Court Slants Toward Free Speech

slants

Last week the U.S. Supreme Court spoke up for free speech. The kind that offends.

The Court ruled unanimously in favor of The Slants. The Slants are an Asian rock band whose federal trademark application was rejected on the grounds that its name is offensive.

Justice Alito took offense at that. Here’s what he had to say about the Trademark Office rule: “It offends a bedrock First Amendment principle: Speech may not be banned on the ground that it expresses ideas that offend.”

That should please the Washington Redskins and Cleveland Indians.

Four liberal and three conservative justices agreed with Alito.  Rookie Justice Gorsuch sat this one out.

 

Nuclear Options Players

nuclear options

As expected, Mitch McConnell pulled the trigger and made Chuck Schumer’s filibuster glow in the dark. As for the boy in the husky pants who runs North  Korea: he’s keeping his nuclear options open for now.

Democrat’s Self-Immolate Over Filibuster

 http://bokbluster.com/2017/04/07/self-immolate/ ‎

Well, Chuck Schumer went with the filibuster. And that caused the Democrats to self-immolate when Mitch McConnell applied the nuclear option. Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch rose from the ashes.

Here’s how they voted.

Now that the filibuster has been vaporized, Senate Democrats are defenseless against the Republican majority’s future high court whims. Which does make for a nice fund raising theme. Not to mention that Republicans will be in the same boat when the tide turns.

Harry Reid’s Nuclear Winter

161209nuclear

During Harry Reid’s tenure as Senate Majority Leader he didn’t get President Obama’s nominees approved at a pace to his liking. Democrats had a simple majority but not the 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster. So Harry invoked the “nuclear option”.  Which is to say he changed the rules. Now, under the new Senate rules, only a simple majority of 51 votes is required to approve most presidential nominees. Supreme Court appointments not included.

Nuclear Option

Until the November 8 shocker, the Majority Leader had expected Hillary Clinton to win the presidency. In October  he bragged that he had set the table for easy approval of  future Supreme Court nominees too. And so he had.

But what he didn’t count on was a Republican president and 52 Republican senators.

Now, as Harry Reid retires to his own personal nuclear winter, he leaves his colleagues glowing in the dark.