Title: Chief Justice Rehnquist dies at age 80
Kaija - September 4, 2005 06:07 AM (GMT)
Rehnquist died today. What will happen to the court? What will happen to America?
link to the article Renhquist dies at age 80--AP
Jesina Dreis - September 4, 2005 04:47 PM (GMT)
I was PISSED when I heard that last night, because the news station I was watching just tacked it on at the end of their broadcast, almost as an afterthought.
What will happen to America? Trust me, you don't want me to answer that question. :p ;) Think I'll wait and hear what other people have to say first.
Kaija - September 4, 2005 05:05 PM (GMT)
According to another news article, replacements include: Attorney General Gonzalez, j. Michael luttig, Antonin Scalia, and Clarence Thomas. The first two were on the list for replacements for Sandra Day O'Connor. I don't know anything about the other two.
We can all be sure no one remotely liberal will get the position...
Jesina Dreis - September 4, 2005 07:20 PM (GMT)
Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas are the two most conservative justices currently on the Supreme Court. Scalia may be more conservative than even Rehnquist was. Thomas is not, I don't believe, QUITE as bad, but he's been quoted as saying "The liberals made my life miserable for forty years, now I'll make theirs miserable for forty years" or something to that effect. They'd basically be promoted to the Chief Justiceship, and other people would take their positions.
Kaija - September 4, 2005 07:31 PM (GMT)
Uhh... if Thomas isn't quite as bad, I hope I never meet Scalia... I think it's time to kiss my rights goodbye.
Arin Atona - September 4, 2005 07:48 PM (GMT)
Rehnquist was quite a trooper, and took his job seriously.
Jesina Dreis - September 4, 2005 07:59 PM (GMT)
My sentiments exactly, Kaija.
Arin, was that in response to anything I said? :raisedbrow:
Arin Atona - September 4, 2005 08:35 PM (GMT)
No, no. Mine was a face-value statement.
Spee - September 4, 2005 09:36 PM (GMT)
*rubs hands together*
*whips out piece of chalk*
Let us begin by placing the Justices on a spatial scale to indicate their ideology. Left is liberal and right is conservative.
Based on this scale, who is the most powerful justice on the Court? O'Connor. Why? Because she is the median voter. If we assume that those to her left and right are going to vote on opposite sides, she becomes the tiebreaker, and her postion on the issue at hand becomes the important one. This, in fact, has been the case many times.
For a moment, let's put aside the fact that O'Connor is leaving and just focus on Rehnquist. We can probably assume that Bush is going to appoint a conservative - probably someone to the right of O'Connor on this scale. No matter where to the right the new justice lies, there will still be 4 justices to the right of O'Connor and 4 to the left. The median will not change - and therefore O'Connor's position will still be the most important, as she remains the tiebreaker. If Rehnquist only were leaving, the Court's postion on issues would not change very much.
But. O'Connor's leaving. As she is the median voter, whoever replaces her will become very important, and they will define the new median. If they are more conservative than O'Connor, the Court will shift to the right. If they are more liberal, the Court will shift to the left.
Bush, obviously, would like someone more conservative than O'Connor - like Roberts. If he succeeds, the Court's overall stance will move to the right.
The point is, Rehnquist's death will not make the Court any more conservative than it already is.
O'Connor's leaving probably will.
Kaija - September 4, 2005 09:43 PM (GMT)
I can't say that I'm as concerned about the overall conservative-ness of the court as much as I'm concerned about how the judges will vote. Rehnquist was very conservative, but he voted in favor of Roe v. Wade, for example. Bush appoints someone conservative, but instead of someone fiscally conservative, he throws in someone who is religiously conservative. And that's not a slight against religious conservatives there. The problem is that we know the Bush administration wants to ban abortion and gay marriage. The next judge he appoints to fill Rehnquist's place could be someone that will definitely vote in favor or banning abortion or gay marriage. Regardless of my stance on those two issues, I believe it would be against everything America is supposed to stand for if that happens.
As a female, I am concerned about my rights being taken away. I'm concerned about what direction this nation will be going with the new appointments.
Spee - September 4, 2005 09:47 PM (GMT)
| Rehnquist was very conservative, but he voted in favor of Roe v. Wade, for example|
No, he did not. He wrote a dissenting opinion for Roe, and has spoken out against it ever since.
|The next judge he appoints to fill Rehnquist's place could be someone that will definitely vote in favor or banning abortion or gay marriage|
But since Rehnquist would have voted in favor of banning abortion and gay marriage too, this doesn't matter.
Kaija - September 4, 2005 09:56 PM (GMT)
whoops. read my article wrong. :blush: So yes, O'Connors absence will definitely hurt the courth more. But two openings means two times the damage that can be done.
Spee - September 4, 2005 09:58 PM (GMT)
|But two openings means two times the damage that can be done. |
No, it doesn't! That's what I'm trying to say! :p
O'Connor's departure is the only one that will have an effect on the kind of decisions the new Court will make. That is, if you buy the whole median voter theory.
Kaija - September 4, 2005 10:02 PM (GMT)
The more I read/hear about this, the more Rehnquist becomes inconsequential. So that's what I get for listening to my parents, anyway.
I half buy the median voter idea. But I totally buy the "My rights could be gone soon" idea.
Kaija - September 5, 2005 09:23 PM (GMT)
Well, Bush installed Roberts as chief justice. Sneaky, sneaky. The news claims that this move will push the court farther right on abortion and affirmative action.
edit: it's still technically a nomination. but it's going to go through.
Jesina Dreis - October 1, 2005 04:30 AM (GMT)
Well, Roberts was passed. Both my Senators voted against.
Anyone know what the final vote numbers were?
Valin_Halcyon - October 1, 2005 04:32 AM (GMT)
*goes to google*
Jesina Dreis - October 1, 2005 04:38 AM (GMT)
We never had a shot in hell.
Valin_Halcyon - October 1, 2005 04:43 AM (GMT)
*plays imperial march*
Any word on who might replace sandra day o conner?
Jesina Dreis - October 1, 2005 04:43 AM (GMT)