Saturday, March 31, 2012

Justice Kennedy, the Tie Breaker?...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Liberty -
VS- Tyranny

Anthony Kennedy, SCJ

{National Review}- Since the retirement of Sandra Day O’Connor, Swingin’ Anthony Kennedy has been the swingingest swinger on the Supreme Court, the big Numero Cinco on all those 5–4 white-knuckle nail-biting final scores. So naturally Court observers have been paying close attention to his interventions in the Obamacare oral arguments. So far he doesn’t sound terribly persuaded by the administration’s line:

This reminds me of a friend and business associate that at one time was on the Board of Selectmen in a small town. The board was comprised of three selectmen and as the other two on the board always took opposites positions on almost every issue it essentially left my friend in control of the political agenda in the town.

Talk about about having all the power. This is precisely the position Justice Kennedy will find himself in should the remaining justices split four and four. Certainly yjr position to in for those desirouds of controlling the balance of power on any given issue.

“The government is saying that the federal government has a duty to tell the individual citizen that it must act, and that is different from what we have in previous cases, and that changes the relationship of the federal government to the individual in a very fundamental way.” As John Hinderaker wrote at the Powerline blog, “In that last observation, Kennedy seems to be channeling Mark Steyn.” Which is true. As I wrote in National Review only two or three issues back, “I’ve argued for years in these pages that governmentalized health care fundamentally transforms the relationship between citizen and state in ways that” — and here’s the bit Justice Kennedy isn’t quite on board with yet — “make it all but impossible to have genuinely conservative government ever again.” So I’m naturally heartened to hear him meeting me halfway. This was one of the highlights of a week that a shell-shocked Jeffrey Toobin, crawling out from under the rubble of the solicitor general’s presentation, told CNN viewers was “a train wreck” for the government’s case.

Indeed. As Obama knows only too well, once thge government gas control of the the healthcare of it's citizens all else is secondary. I mean REALLY secondary.

And yet, and yet . . . If you incline to the view that Obamacare is a transformative act, isn’t there something slightly pitiful about the fact that the liberties of over 300 million people hinge on the somewhat whimsical leanings of just one man? I mean, Kennedy seems a cheery enough cove, but who died and made him the all-powerful Sultan of Swing? “It is a decision of the Supreme Court,” explained Nancy Pelosi a few years back in more congenial times for the Democrats. “So this is almost as if God has spoken.”

That’s not how earlier Americans saw it: “If the policy of the government upon vital questions affecting the whole people is to be irrevocably fixed by decisions of the Supreme Court,” wrote Abraham Lincoln, “the people will have ceased to be their own rulers.”

Which they have. Or it would not have come to this.

Certainly the Affordable Care Act, aka: ObamaCare is one of those transformaive pieces of legislation with far reaching ramifications for the future of individual liberties in this, the Land of Liberty.

Obama is acutely aware of these dynamics. So is Justice Kennedy. And that precise point all liberty minded Americans are aware of.

If some "pundits of the SCOTUS" have it correct lets us all hope that Justice Kennedy's best instincts prevail.

Read the rest.

Via: Memeorandum


  1. One could legitimately argue that Justice Kennedy is the most powerful man in America right now (well, other than Mr. Mark Zuckerberg, of course).

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