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Rockntractor
04-02-2012, 11:59 PM
You can find several instances of Justices that were deemed conservative at their conformation turning into liberals later,but I'm not finding any liberals that have turned conservative.
I'm sure that it is somewhat relative and that both sides of the court in the distant past would have seemed conservative in modern times, but lets just say have there been any in the last 100 years?

This blog got me thinking.

Professor Byron L. Warnken's Blog

The Teaching, The Writing, The Clients
The Supreme Court is Even More Politicized than You Think

by Professor Byron L. Warnken on April 2, 2012

THE SUPREME COURT HAS BECOME MORE POLITICIZED

When Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens retired from the Supreme Court in 2010, at age 90, there were no longer any justices on the Court from the pre-Reagan era. Justice Stevens was a liberal justice appointed to the Court by President Ford, a Republican. Two of the most liberal justices in history – Justice Earl Warren and Justice William Brennan – were appointed to the Court by President Eisenhower, a Republican. Appointments like those appointments do not happen today.

Beginning with President Reagan, and followed by President Bush (the elder), President Clinton, President Bush (the younger), and President Obama, all appointments to the Supreme Court have been (1) a member of the President’s party, (2) someone who thinks a lot like the President, (3) someone who is on the President’s side of the line, but not so far down that line so as to preclude confirmation, and (4) a young person, so as to get the longest tenure out of each appointment. I knew that I was getting old when I realized that the Chief Justice of the United States was in his second year of law school when I became a law professor.

Historically, the Supreme Court was viewed as the one branch of government that stood above the political fray. The Court is still considered to be more neutral than the legislative branch and more neutral than the executive branch, but, in the last three decades, any notion that the Court is completely neutral is gone.

A century ago, only about 3% of the Court’s decisions were 5-to-4 decisions. During the last three decades, that number has increased more than seven fold to 22%. In fact, it is speculated that the reason that Justice David Souter resigned from the Court was his disgust over how political the Court acted in Bush v. Gore.

The current Court breakdown is as follows:

Justice Antonin Scalia – appointed by President Reagan – conservative

Justice Anthony Kennedy – appointed by President Reagan – conservative, but balanced

Justice Clarence Thomas – appointed by President Bush (the elder) – conservative

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg – appointed by President Clinton – liberal

Justice Stephen Breyer – appointed by President Clinton – liberal

Chief Justice John Roberts – appointed by President Bush (the younger) – conservative

Justice Samuel Alito – appointed by President Bush (the younger) – conservative

Justice Sonya Sotomayor – appointed by President Obama – liberal

Justice Elana Kagan – appointed by President Obama – liberal

Justice Kennedy has become the Court. On many issues, when the other eight Justices are marching in lock step with the party that appointed them, Justice Kennedy can go be persuaded to go either way. Since 2005, Justice Kennedy has been in the majority in almost all 5-to-4 decisions. As goes Justice Kennedy, so goes the Court. That is why Supreme Court observer Jeffrey Toobin, Esq., predicted that the “individual mandate” in the Health Care Reform Act was in “grave danger,” after he heard the questions that Justice Kennedy asked of the advocates, as Justice Kennedy struggled with the confrontation between the Commerce Clause and the Tenth Amendment.
http://professorwarnken.com/2012/04/02/the-supreme-court-is-even-more-politicized-than-you-think/

Janice
04-03-2012, 02:02 AM
To the "elite" (on our side of the aisle) if your a "moderate" or a "centrist" your considered conservative. That is how they view it. This is how liberal republicans like those in the Bush family are labeled "conservative" (in public while privately being labeled "moderate").

Conversely the "elite" on the other side of the aisle consider you a conservative if you arent as far left as they are. Thats why when they have panels on the talk shows with 3 libs and a "moderate", they think its "balanced" because the moderate is "conservative" in their view.

So its little surprise when "conservatives" are appointed only later to learn they really werent.

Bailey
04-03-2012, 06:41 AM
I got into an argument over the 4 liberal justices of the supreme court on whether or not they are liberal, they all to a man thought they were centrists. lol I almost pissed myself laughing.

Arroyo_Doble
04-03-2012, 08:25 AM
The issue becomes what is considered "conservative" and what is considered "liberal." For instance, the latest 5-4 decision to come out of the Court OK's the State to strip search people for minor offenses when they are arrested. I would think the "conservative" approach would be to limit the actions of the State when it comes to the 4th Amendment, forcing the authorities to climb a higher bar on what is reasonable.

To me, the Court has become more partisan, not ideological.

txradioguy
04-03-2012, 08:27 AM
To me, the Court has become more partisan, not ideological.

Thank you having no brain and simply repeating what Obama said yesterday.

Good job fanboy.

Adam Wood
04-03-2012, 09:33 AM
The issue becomes what is considered "conservative" and what is considered "liberal." For instance, the latest 5-4 decision to come out of the Court OK's the State to strip search people for minor offenses when they are arrested. I would think the "conservative" approach would be to limit the actions of the State when it comes to the 4th Amendment, forcing the authorities to climb a higher bar on what is reasonable.

To me, the Court has become more partisan, not ideological.I'm not so sure about that. Once someone is under arrest, they are by definition a ward of the state. It seems to me that if the appropriate burden has been met for an arrest, then the burden has been met to ensure that someone does not have the means to harm themselves or someone else. It doesn't seem unreasonable to me to involve a strip search for that purpose, and since the bar on Amendment IV is "unreasonable," this case seems to meet that demand.

Now, perhaps the bar for arrest may be too low, but that's a different argument. At least in this case, the police had a warrant issued by a judge. The warrant was issued improperly, but that's not the fault of the police. They are duty-bound to act on that warrant if the person named on the warrant presents himself, as he did in this case. As such, the arrest in question was not illegal in itself, though it was precipitated by an action by a judge that may be deemed illegal.

Arroyo_Doble
04-03-2012, 09:49 AM
I'm not so sure about that. Once someone is under arrest, they are by definition a ward of the state. It seems to me that if the appropriate burden has been met for an arrest, then the burden has been met to ensure that someone does not have the means to harm themselves or someone else. It doesn't seem unreasonable to me to involve a strip search for that purpose, and since the bar on Amendment IV is "unreasonable," this case seems to meet that demand.

That is a circular argument. You are saying that bar is arrest and after arrest, nothing is unreasonable. If that were the case, nothing is unreasonable, period. All that is required is arrest.


Now, perhaps the bar for arrest may be too low, but that's a different argument.

I think that argument was lost with Atwater v City of Lago Vista. Arrest is very, very easy.

On a side note, that decision was during that time after Bush v Gore where the Court mixed things up a bit to get rid of the partisan taint. Souter actually wrote that one.


At least in this case, the police had a warrant issued by a judge. The warrant was issued improperly, but that's not the fault of the police. They are duty-bound to act on that warrant if the person named on the warrant presents himself, as he did in this case. As such, the arrest in question was not illegal in itself, though it was precipitated by an action by a judge that may be deemed illegal.

I am not really arguing whether the arrest was warranted (so to speak). I believe you are correct and the officers were in the right. This is more of an ideological enigma for me. I am looking at what I consider a conservative position, limits on the action of the State, and seeing the so-called conservative wing of the Court refusing to place any reasonable limit on the State when it comes to police powers.

Arroyo_Doble
04-03-2012, 10:02 AM
An interesting bit in Atwater:



Atwater’s arrest was surely “humiliating,” as she says in her brief, but it was no more “harmful to … privacy or … physical interests” than the normal custodial arrest. She was handcuffed, placed in a squad car, and taken to the local police station, where officers asked her to remove her shoes, jewelry, and glasses, and to empty her pockets. They then took her photograph and placed her in a cell, alone, for about an hour, after which she was taken before a magistrate, and released on $310 bond. The arrest and booking were inconvenient and embarrassing to Atwater, but not so extraordinary as to violate the Fourth Amendment


Atwater v Lago Vista (http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/99-1408.ZO.html)

.


The argument Souter made was essentially it wasn't that big of a deal; merely an inconvenience.

Now, with the latest decision, mere inconvenience has given way to strip search.

Rockntractor
04-03-2012, 10:02 AM
This is my idea of what constitutes a conservative judge.

A Definition of Strict Constructionism

From Justin Quinn, former About.com Guide
See More About:

judicial restraint
originalism
conservative jurists

Definition: Strict construction is a legal term typically applied to a form of exacting judicial interpretation. The term is sometimes misidentified as "strict constructivism." The practice of strict constructionism requires a judge to apply the text of the law in a formalist way -- only as it is written. This means a judge or panel of judges must first obtain a clear meaning of the text. Once the text of a law is interpreted clearly, there is no need to draw further inferences from statutes of the law.

Strict constructionism belongs to a family of judicial interpretation theories known as "originalism." Employing strict constructionism is one way for conservative judges to practice judicial restraint.
Pronunciation: strikt kunstrukshinizim
Also Known As: judicial conservatism, originalism, textualism
Alternate Spellings: strict constructionist, strict construction
Common Misspellings: strict constructivism
Examples:
When President George W. Bush campaigned for president, he promised to nominate "strict constructionists in the mold of Justices Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas."
http://usconservatives.about.com/od/glossaryterms/g/Strict_Constructionism.htm

Rockntractor
04-03-2012, 10:04 AM
Scalia on the Constitution
"My Constitution is a very flexible Constitution." -- Justice Scalia
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia explained and defended his "originalist" approach to constitutional interpretation in a closing address to a Princeton University conference on James Madison, fourth president and framer of the Constitution.

Speaking on Feb. 23, 2001, Justice Scalia explained that he, like Madison, interprets the Constitution according to the "common sense" meaning and definition of the document's words at the time they were written. An opposite approach, Scalia suggested from that applied by Justices who believe the Constitution "changes from age to age in order to meet the needs of a changing society."

Scalia criticized the second approach, saying that it too often results in crafting subjective interpretations of the Constitution to address issues that could and should be handled by Congress.

Calling his view of the Constitution an "originalist" view, Scalia conceded it often places him in a position of supporting laws that do not seem to make sense.

"It may well be stupid, but if it's stupid, pass a law!" he said. "Don't think the originalist interpretation constrains you. To the contrary. My Constitution is a very flexible Constitution. You want a right to abortion? Create it the way all rights are created in a democracy, pass a law. The death penalty? Pass a law. That's flexibility."

Scalia suggested that supporters of the "living Constitution" view, allowing for flexible interpretations molded to meet the changing times, really wanted "rigidity."

"They want the whole country to do it their way from coast to coast. They want to drive one issue after another off the stage of political debate … Every time you insert into the Constitution - by speculation - new rights that aren't really there you are impoverishing democracy. You are pushing one issue after another off the democratic stage."

Appointed to the Supreme Court in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan, Justice Scalia is considered one of the court's conservatives along with Chief Justice William Rehnquist, and Justices Anthony Kennedy and Clarence Thomas. [Current Supreme Court Justices]
http://usgovinfo.about.com/library/weekly/aa022701a.htm

AmPat
04-03-2012, 10:06 AM
That is a circular argument. You are saying that bar is arrest and after arrest, nothing is unreasonable. If that were the case, nothing is unreasonable, period. All that is required is arrest.



I think that argument was lost with Atwater v City of Lago Vista. Arrest is very, very easy.

On a side note, that decision was during that time after Bush v Gore where the Court mixed things up a bit to get rid of the partisan taint. Souter actually wrote that one.



I am not really arguing whether the arrest was warranted (so to speak). I believe you are correct and the officers were in the right. This is more of an ideological enigma for me. I am looking at what I consider a conservative position, limits on the action of the State, and seeing the so-called conservative wing of the Court refusing to place any reasonable limit on the State when it comes to police powers.
I rarely agree with you, but this is one time where I believe you to be correct. Karma to you.

Arroyo_Doble
04-03-2012, 10:08 AM
"It may well be stupid, but if it's stupid, pass a law!" he said. "Don't think the originalist interpretation constrains you. To the contrary. My Constitution is a very flexible Constitution. You want a right to abortion? Create it the way all rights are created in a democracy, pass a law. The death penalty? Pass a law. That's flexibility."

That is interesting considering they are now deliberating on striking down a law that was passed.

I wonder if he will remain consistent in this or find "flexibility" in his ideology.

Adam Wood
04-03-2012, 01:28 PM
That is a circular argument. You are saying that bar is arrest and after arrest, nothing is unreasonable. If that were the case, nothing is unreasonable, period. All that is required is arrest.I have to admit that you have a point there.

Janice
04-03-2012, 01:46 PM
That is interesting considering they are now deliberating on striking down a law that was passed.

I wonder if he will remain consistent in this or find "flexibility" in his ideology.

The law that needs to be changed is the commerce clause. Then they can attempt this. First one then the other. Not the other way around.

Zeus
04-03-2012, 01:51 PM
That is interesting considering they are now deliberating on striking down a law that was passed.

I wonder if he will remain consistent in this or find "flexibility" in his ideology.

They are deliberating on the constitutionality of the law not the stupidity of the law.

Arroyo_Doble
04-03-2012, 02:12 PM
"[F]lexibility" appears to be in vogue.

Janice
04-03-2012, 03:16 PM
http://i.imgur.com/VAHkE.jpg
Separate but co-equal.. unless of course, you disagree with me


They are deliberating on the constitutionality of the law not the stupidity of the law.

This is why we used to have 3 co-equal branches of govt. First he over-rides the people. Then he over-rides congress. Now this.

Odysseus
04-03-2012, 05:42 PM
That is a circular argument. You are saying that bar is arrest and after arrest, nothing is unreasonable. If that were the case, nothing is unreasonable, period. All that is required is arrest.

Once somebody is in custody, they are in custody, and the state has an obligation to ensure that they are not carrying any contraband into the facility. Otherwise, anybody could seek arrest for a minor charge and smuggle weapons or drugs to other prisoners. Now, one can argue that if the original arrest was improper, then the search while in custody is invalidated and anything found cannot be used for subsequent prosecution, but if the original arrest is valid, then the search is valid. [/QUOTE]


That is interesting considering they are now deliberating on striking down a law that was passed.

I wonder if he will remain consistent in this or find "flexibility" in his ideology.

There is nothing inconsistent in his view of the Constitution and the striking down of a law that is unconstitutional. The courts have had the power to strike down unconstitutional laws since Marbury vs. Madison. Scalia's objection is to the practice of judges creating law by pretending that their desires are enshrined in the Constitution, even if what they are imposing runs counter to the text and original intent.

NJCardFan
04-03-2012, 05:58 PM
Once somebody is in custody, they are in custody, and the state has an obligation to ensure that they are not carrying any contraband into the facility. Otherwise, anybody could seek arrest for a minor charge and smuggle weapons or drugs to other prisoners. Now, one can argue that if the original arrest was improper, then the search while in custody is invalidated and anything found cannot be used for subsequent prosecution, but if the original arrest is valid, then the search is valid.



[/QUOTE]
Yo yo has obviously never worked in a prison. We have this issue all the time and have full authority to search any inmate at any time. Oddly enough, the only thing we have to get special permission to do is do urine tests which either have to have probable cause or have to be what they call randoms. Visits present a whole other problem.