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Supreme Court splits 4-4, again, in state sovereignty

Unitedwestand13

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This is going to be a headache.

The shorthanded Supreme Court divided 4-4 again Tuesday on one of two key questions in a case involving the authority of states to impose penalties on other states.

Ruling in a case over a tax dispute involving a man who moved from California to Nevada, the justices said they could not muster a majority to resolve whether to overrule a 1979 Supreme Court precedent that permits state courts in one state to assert jurisdiction over state agencies in another.

As a result, that precedent, Nevada v. Hall, will remain on the books.

Such 4-4 divisions are being closely watched in the wake of Justice Antonin Scalia's unexpected death in February and the ensuing standoff between President Barack Obama and Senate Republicans over whether to replace him now or after a new president takes office. So far, there are no signs leaders in the GOP-led Senate will grant a hearing or vote on Obama's nominee, D.C. Circuit Judge Merrick Garland.

The White House and Democrats have argued that the high court's tie votes deprive the legal system of clear guidance and underscore the need for a ninth justice now. Republicans say the court often works shorthanded due to recusals and a few 4-4 results this year won't have a dramatic impact.

Supreme Court splits 4-4, again, in state sovereignty fight - POLITICO

Just how long will the Supreme Court vacancy go unfilled?
 

cpwill

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This is going to be a headache.

Supreme Court splits 4-4, again, in state sovereignty fight - POLITICO

Just how long will the Supreme Court vacancy go unfilled?

It's not so much a vacancy as it is an even number of justices - the Constitution doesn't say how many there should or shouldn't be, and we've had different numbers at different points in our past.

But you are right - it could become an issue. Perhaps Ruth Bader Ginsberg should resign, so that the court can make stronger decisions, instead.
 

joG

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Depends on your point of view, but what's worse - bad decisions by omission or by commission?

And we certainly have had some of the commission ones.
 

cpwill

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Now that, is an idea.

It will be interesting to see how many of them are actually offended by the idea of an evenly split court v how many of them really just want another liberal on the bench.

I'm not holding my breath on the former.
 

Unitedwestand13

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It's not so much a vacancy as it is an even number of justices - the Constitution doesn't say how many there should or shouldn't be, and we've had different numbers at different points in our past.

But you are right - it could become an issue. Perhaps Ruth Bader Ginsberg should resign, so that the court can make stronger decisions, instead.

Now that, is an idea.

How many 4-4 decisions should we allow to happen? Especially ones that could potentially create havoc at the constitutional level?
 

cpwill

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How many 4-4 decisions should we allow to happen? Especially ones that could potentially create havoc at the constitutional level?

Well, I offered up a solution - let Justice Ginsberg (who is soon to leave the bench anyway) go ahead and retire, and once again the SCOTUS will have the ability to issue bare-majorities, as opposed to having to come down 5-3 for a majority.
 

countryboy

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How many 4-4 decisions should we allow to happen? Especially ones that could potentially create havoc at the constitutional level?

So what of the idea of Ginsburg retiring?
 

Unitedwestand13

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Well, I offered up a solution - let Justice Ginsberg (who is soon to leave the bench anyway) go ahead and retire, and once again the SCOTUS will have the ability to issue bare-majorities, as opposed to having to come down 5-3 for a majority.

So you are content to let Scalia's seat remain vacant? Just for the record, the longest that a Supreme Court vacancy has been left unfilled is 125 days.

Scalia's seat has been vacant 66 days

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/...rt-nominations-election-year-scalia.html?_r=0
 

Crovax

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How many 4-4 decisions should we allow to happen? Especially ones that could potentially create havoc at the constitutional level?

Because 5-4 politically based rulings are inherently better?
 

digsbe

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Crovax

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So you are content to let Scalia's seat remain vacant? Just for the record, the longest that a Supreme Court vacancy has been left unfilled is 125 days.

Scalia's seat has been vacant 66 days

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/...rt-nominations-election-year-scalia.html?_r=0

Ummm that's not what the article says

"The Senate has never taken more than 125 days to vote on a successor from the time of nomination"

FT_16.02.23_supremeVacancies_longest.png
 

digsbe

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As opposed to a life long partisan conservative who does the same ?

If I had to pick I'd rather go with a conservative who likely wouldn't give unanimous power to the gov. I think they'd be more apt to restrain the government from violating our rights than giving it free reign to expand and posses more power. Realistically social issues won't be overturned so I'm not really concerned about that.

Preferably I'd like someone who rules based on the letter of the law as originally written devoid of their political beliefs and emotions from making decisions not based on critical evaluation from a just and unbiased point of view.
 

cpwill

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So you are content to let Scalia's seat remain vacant? Just for the record, the longest that a Supreme Court vacancy has been left unfilled is 125 days.

Scalia's seat has been vacant 66 days

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/...rt-nominations-election-year-scalia.html?_r=0
There is no "Scalia's Seat". There is only the Constitutional requirement to have a Supreme Court. We can have as many or few judges as the POTUS and Senate agree to.

Sent from my XT1526 using Tapatalk
 

Unitedwestand13

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There is no "Scalia's Seat". There is only the Constitutional requirement to have a Supreme Court. We can have as many or few judges as the POTUS and Senate agree to.

Sent from my XT1526 using Tapatalk

And does precedent ring a bell?

The precedent is 9 Supreme Court justices.
 

cpwill

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And does precedent ring a bell?

The precedent is 9 Supreme Court justices.
Actually the precedent includes (as I recall) 9, 8, and 6.

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CanadaJohn

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How many 4-4 decisions should we allow to happen? Especially ones that could potentially create havoc at the constitutional level?

I think the number of 4-4 decisions you're seeing since the death of Justice Scalia simply goes to prove that your Supreme Court is entirely partisan and activist and doesn't come to its decisions based on the law but based on their individual ideologies, and then they write their opinions based on the results they favour. The only alternative is to believe that your laws are incredibly poorly written. If they were all servants of the law, you would have rulings that are faithful to the law and not to political ideology. Justice Scalia was a great Justice because he was faithful to the law and wherever it took him.

Here in Canada, our Supreme Court makes some rulings that are unpopular and often seem political in nature, but our court strives very hard to come to unanimous or near unanimous decisions on almost all rulings. It's rare that your court does that.

And that, in my view, is why President Obama's choice will not get a hearing and if he does, he won't get voted out of Committee. So get used to this at least until early 2017.
 

countryboy

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Why does a liberal Justice have to retire? Congratulations you now have 2 vacancies to fill!

I wonder what would happen if one of the remaining conservative justices decides to retire?
That's what I thought. ;)
 

notquiteright

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It's not so much a vacancy as it is an even number of justices - the Constitution doesn't say how many there should or shouldn't be, and we've had different numbers at different points in our past. But you are right - it could become an issue. Perhaps Ruth Bader Ginsberg should resign, so that the court can make stronger decisions, instead.

And let Hillary or Bernie appoint TWO young ultra liberal justices- EXCELLENT plan... ;)
 

Threegoofs

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Ummm that's not what the article says

"The Senate has never taken more than 125 days to vote on a successor from the time of nomination"

FT_16.02.23_supremeVacancies_longest.png

Maybe it should have been clarified "since they invented the automobile and airplane'.
 
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