Obama’s Pick Would Help the Court. (Liberal Causes, Not So Much.) – Bloomberg View

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Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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9 Responses

  1. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    With Garland on the court, you wouldn’t see much left-wing activism — but you would see a lot less right-wing activism, too.

    Well, that doesn’t sound so bad…Report

    • Avatar Morat20 says:

      I’ve said it before, it simply shifts the center of the court one seat to the left. It doesn’t matter if Garland is out past RBG or just to the left of Kennedy, it still moves it left.

      I’ve been reading some analysis of him that indicates he’s probably closer to RBG than he is Kennedy though, on most issues.

      Some of the tea leaf reading is pretty strained I admit — decisions you hand down bound by precedent are different than when you’re sitting in SCOTUS and can set it — or change it.

      (Although part of me thinks he shot to the top of the list merely so Obama could watch Orrin Hatch spend the next three months getting fed his own words).Report

      • Avatar Don Zeko says:

        I don’t follow the logic of your point, though. If he is more liberal than Kagan/Breyer/whoever you think the fourth most liberal sitting justice is, that’s true. But if he’s not, then he becomes the new swing vote, and the nuances of his views matter a great deal. From what little I’ve read about him, it’s not clear whether he is more or less liberal than the least liberal of the current 4-vote liberal bloc.Report

        • Avatar pillsy says:

          It matters whether he’s more or less liberal than Breyer or Kagan, but if he’s more liberal, it’s doesn’t really matter whether he’s a lot more liberal.Report

        • Avatar Morat20 says:

          That’s true, but I get the impression that he’s further left than the new center. So he won’t be the new swing in general. He appears to be further ‘left’ in general than Kagan and Breyer.

          (Individual justices might end up the swing vote on some individual topics, because even a highly polarized court will occasionally break down in odd ways. Like abortion seems to swing on Kennedy, but commerce clause stuff seems to swing on Roberts. I’m just speaking in generalities).Report

  2. If he wouldn’t have been the fifth vote to gut the 15th Amendment or go fifty miles out of the way to overturn decades of campaign finance law, he would have been a yuge difference from Scalia.Report