Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Curing the Supremes

The notion of Judicial Review has led to the Supreme Court of the U.S. to be the strongest power within the government.  It is not in the Constitution that the Supreme Court has the power to review the Constitutionality of a law. 

If the framers of the constitution had had in mind this power be given to the Court the notes and minutes from the discussion of the writing of the document would have show that to be so.  It is not mentioned.  It is not part of the intended power of the Court.

Another oddity of the high court is that it is not meant to have 9 members.  That is, the Constitution simply makes it a number as determined by congress.  Other ideas have been posited over the years.  For instance, Franklin Roosevelt put the idea of Emeritus Vote out there and it was gaining steam when the court slowly turned its votes to favor precedent of prior decisions.  The Emeritus idea was that all justices over the age of 70 had a combined single vote on the court in any decision and that, further, the President would appoint additional justices until the total vote would reach a total of 9 (nine).

Judicial Restraint is the law for all federal judges EXCEPT the Supreme Court.  What that says is there is a code of conduct for judges that keep the system from an appearance of bias.  The current Court has failed miserably to eschew all appearance of bias.  Justices Alito, Thomas and Scalia have all done things that show influence and bias.  They have turned the Supreme Court into an arm of the partisan bickering that has overtaken the Congress of the United States.

A current political reality is that because the House of Representatives has been so heavily populated by the Republican party in 2010 there is near zero likelihood that these shameful judges will be impeached.  There will probably need to be another solution to turn the court back into a less biased group.  If Congress enacted a LAW that the Supreme Court Justices had to adhere to Judicial Restraint it would go a long way toward bringing the rogue members into the center… into the core of their job.  If the President begins talking about the issue and proposes Emeritus Vote or some similar rule along with the idea that no President can appoint more than two justices during any single term it would go a long way toward correcting the current problem.

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