Vice President Kamala Harris Slams “Activist” Supreme Court

On Meet the Press, Vice President Kamala Harris denounced the conservatives on the Supreme Court as “activists” due to their decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. She objected that the decision ignored decades of precedent and “we are suffering as a nation because of it.” The common attack on the integrity of the justices is beneath the office of the Vice President and only legitimates the unfair attacks on these justices who are fulfilling their oath to uphold what they believe are the dictates of the Constitution (as did their colleagues in dissent in Dobbs).

This week, I had the honor of speaking at the annual judicial conference for the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. I spoke on the recent religion cases but also about the criticism of the Court over its decision to overturn Roe. Indeed, this issue came up in my exchanges with Professor Elizabeth Sepper of the University of Texas at Austin School of Law.  Professor Sepper warned that the Court was serving as a “tool” of the conservative religious right and shattering long-standing precedent.

Chief Justice John Roberts also spoke at the conference (as did Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch). Roberts began his remarks by expressly disagreeing with those who questioned the “legitimacy” of the Court simply because they disagree with its constitutional analysis.

In her interview, Harris declared

“I think this is an activist court. We had an established right for almost half a century, which is the right of women to make decisions about their own body as an extension of what we have decided to be, the privacy rights to which all people are entitled. And this court took that constitutional right away, and we are suffering as a nation because of it.”

The fact that the Court overturned a long-standing precedent does not mean that it is an “activist court.” As I have previously noted, justices take an oath to uphold the Constitution and to “faithfully and impartially” interpret the law. It is bizarre to argue that they should vote for some interpretation of the Constitution that they believe is wrong and unfounded just to preserve precedent. If that view had prevailed in the past, Brown v. Board of Education would have upheld the racist precepts of “separate but equal” in Plessy v. Ferguson. When it comes to fundamental rights, justices should faithfully interpret the Constitution.

There may be a greater hold of precedent in statutory interpretations (since Congress can address erroneous or conflicting interpretations). However, in the interpretation of the Constitution, justices are fulfilling an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Stare decisis may protect the Court as an institution from public criticism, but that should not override the duty to correctly and faithfully interpret the Constitution.

As I noted in my exchange with Professor Sepper, the liberal justices have shown the same willingness to overturn precedent when they have a majority or to create new doctrines with sweeping social and political implications. The left did not denounce the Warren Court when it was handing down such sweeping new rulings. It did not denounce Justice Breyer when he wrote routinely voted in dissent on death penalty cases despite decades of precedent supporting the right of states to impose capital punishment.

There is little doubt that the liberals on the Court would overturn Heller and the Second Amendment cases if they had a majority. Indeed, while denouncing the “activist” conservative justices for overturning cases, Democratic senators demanded that cases like Heller and Citizen’s United be overturned. During the confirmation hearing for Justice Kavanaugh, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) demanded that Kavanaugh promise to respect stare decisis on cases like Roe, but then called for overturning cases like Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. Democratic groups often decry the conservative majority as “partisan” while demanding the packing of the court to guarantee an immediate liberal majority.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor has assured liberals in public speeches that “mistakes” in such high-profile opinions can be “corrected” by the Court in later decisions. In other words, when a majority forms with an opposing jurisprudential view. Does that make her an activist justice according to Vice President Harris?

Dean Erwin Chemerinsky celebrated that “Justice Sotomayor wrote a dissent, in which she said, ‘Trinity Lutheran v. Comer was wrong then, and it’s wrong now.’” While that is a paraphrasing of the justice, does that mean that she has discarded the hold of precedent for politics? Of course not. She is interpreting the Constitution consistently and faithfully according to her own jurisprudential viewpoint.

In the recent Carson opinion, Sotomayor makes clear that “this Court should not have started down this path” in Trinity Lutheran and clearly rejects its hold on the Court. Not surprisingly, Chemerinsky approves of that position.

Yet, Chemerinsky denounced the conservative justices as “partisan hacks.”

Hillary Clinton declared that she would only nominate justices who would overturn Citizen’s United. Would those justices then be “partisan hacks”?

None of this means that Harris should not disagree with the Court or reject its reasoning. As Chief Justice Roberts said this weekend, that is fair game. Rather it is the attack on the integrity of the justices that is beyond the pale in my view.  The views in Dobbs were not sudden or opportunistic. The Court had continually fractured over basis for Roe, which was itself effectively gutted in Casey. The series of 5-4 rulings had dissents expressing precisely the objections that eventually secured a majority in Dobbs. The ruling was consistent with the long-standing jurisprudential views of these justices.

Harris’ views of the integrity of the Court would be more credible if she did not steadfastly refuse during the election to denounce court-packing schemes.  That plan supported by democrats like Sen. Elizabeth Warren is a raw and direct political manipulation of the Court. Yet, Harris refused to oppose such calls during the election.

Unfortunately, the attack on the Court today is likely a foreshadowing of the election to come in the use of rage politics on both sides. This failure of leadership has fueled a crisis of faith in our system. Both her office and the public deserve better from the Vice President.

114 thoughts on “Vice President Kamala Harris Slams “Activist” Supreme Court”

  1. Let’s look at abortion from 60,000 feet. We can only put so many people in prison. Unwanted babies often wind up being feral children raised by gangs. Cutting that population is not spoken about in polite company… like TV.
    The other part is men who flat don’t want to pay child support for a one night stand.
    Religion and morality has taken a hit with the popular me culture.
    So we will eventually treat it like having a wart removed, and import our replacements.

  2. equity [ek’-wi-tee] noun

    1. A racist practice where winners and losers are selected, not on ability or merit, but by immutable characteristics such as skin pigments:
    The progressives anointed Kamala Harris as vice president in the name of equity.

    1. Equity is freedom from bias or favor.

      Equity precludes affirmative action, quotas, forced busing, financial assistance, non-discrimination laws, etc.

      Affirmative action, quotas, forced busing, financial assistance, public housing, Obamacare, etc., are all inequitable bias, favoritism, bigotry and prejudice.

      The entire American welfare state is unconstitutional.
      __________________________________________

      Merriam-Webster

      equity noun

      eq·​ui·​ty | \ ˈe-kwə-tē
      \
      plural equities
      Definition of equity

      1a : justice according to natural law or right

      specifically: freedom from bias or favoritism

  3. Jonathan: The fight against Dobbs and GOP attempts to ban abortion in the states is gaining momentum. After Kansas the incubator for these efforts is now in Michigan. More than 750,000 Michigan voters have signed a petition to prevent the GOP legislature from banning abortion. The petition will appear on the November ballot–despite GOP efforts to keep it off. Two GOP members of the state’s Board of Canvassers refused to certify the petition with the spurious claim there were spacing errors on the petition that cause confusion. The GOP went to the state supreme court but it rebuked the challengers. Chief Justice Bridget McCormack noted that lawyers who challenged the petition had failed to produce “a single signer who claims to have been confused by the limited spaces sections”. The petition gathered most of the signatures after May 3, when Alito’s draft opinion in Dobbs was leaked. We’ll see how the abortion vote goes in November in Michigan. But it’s pretty clear there’s nothing like voters energized and angered by a partisan right-wing cabal on the SC who think they can make personal health decisions for all women. As Dolly Madison told her husband: “Don’t ignore the ladies!”

    1. More than 750,000 Michigan voters have signed a petition to prevent the GOP legislature from banning abortion.

      That can’t be right. A decision like that cannot be left to the people. They are too stupid to know what is good for them.

      Unelected people wearing robs with their name on several college degrees must tell the people how to live their lives.

  4. Ms. Harris’s use of the term “activist” strikes me as pretty droll, considering she had no complaint when the Supreme Court so frequently felt compelled to “legislate” where Congress wouldn’t.

  5. Abortion is the only event that modern liberals think too violent and obscene to portray on TV. This is not because they are squeamish or prudish. It is because if people knew what Abortion really looked like, it would destroy their pretence that it is a civilized answer to the problem of what to do about unwanted babies.

    Peter Hitchens
    (brother of Christopher Hitchens)

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-490106/A-calamity-women–just-doctor-predicted.html

  6. I’m a 65 year old man, so I don’t actually have a dog in the abortion fight. Still, I read the full decision and dissents in Dobbs. Basically the majority said that the court in 1973 engaged in the ultimate in activism when the majority in Roe acted as if they were a legislative body to achieve an outcome they thought was desirable. This prompted me to go back and read the majority decision in Roe, which I had never done before. The majority in Dobbs was clearly accurate in their statement on this point, and the minority in Roe pointed it out as well, as something the Supreme Court simply did not have the authority to do. The majority in Dobbs undertook an extensive analysis of the historical record showing that this so-called unwritten right was never a part of our history and tradition before the relatively recent Roe decision, and more correctly belonged with the states to decide. John Roberts predictably offered a “split the baby” decision (no pun intended) that the court should narrowly rule only on Dobbs, but not on the constitutionality of Roe. This would have satisfied no one. The court made the unusual decision to make a clear and definitive ruling. Leave it to Roberts to offer a way out of doing their jobs.

    I then read the dissents in Dobbs, which simply said that abortion on demand had been a good thing, and that hey, it had been the law of the land for almost 50 years, so it should stand, even if wrongly decided. The minority was completely unconcerned if Roe was ever unconstitutional, and completely ignored a government interest in protecting third party rights, those of the as yet unborn child.

    These are two very different views, one based on logic, and the other based on emotion, which is just the difference between how liberals and conservatives see the world. This colors their approach to the Constitution, one as the absolute and immutable law of the land (until amended) that is limited in scope, and the other as a “living document” to be reinterpreted almost at will. Call that politics if you will, but I don’t think it really is. I do think the response to the decision in Dobbs was telling, with Democrats screaming and jumping up and down outside of Justice’s homes, as if this would suddenly change their votes, instead of getting to work like adults back in their home states to influence abortion policy through their elected officials. As for VP Harris’s comments, I doubt anyone is listening to her anymore, if they ever did.

    1. Abortion is neither prohibited nor conferred by the Constitution, it is reserved to Congress or to the States.

      Congress will never pass a pro-abortion law.

      Abortion must be legislated by States.

    2. OldCop876: What a great, great comment you wrote, especially from one who is, ostensibly, more likely familiar with criminal than constitutional law. I wish there were more American citizens who had your ability to delve into such things on their own, and develop a better understanding, instead of relying on slanted media’s ex post facto’s “Cliff’s Notes,” ha ha.

    3. “The majority in Dobbs undertook an extensive analysis of the historical record …”

      And as many historians have pointed out, they misrepresented some of the historical record.

      “I then read the dissents in Dobbs, which simply said that abortion on demand had been a good thing, and that hey, it had been the law of the land for almost 50 years, so it should stand, even if wrongly decided. The minority was completely unconcerned if Roe was ever unconstitutional, and completely ignored a government interest in protecting third party rights, those of the as yet unborn child.”

      This is false, and frankly, the fact that you believe it to be true suggests that you do “have a dog in the abortion fight.”

    4. You may want to also look at the Casey 1992 majority opinion that upheld the centrality of Roe and adopted the undue burden standard. I question whether the dissent in Dobbs actually said “abortion on demand” because that phrase is typically used by the pro life community.

      1. CC: Poor OldCop876 was merely expressing his opinion on this matter, and I believe he did pretty well….
        Conversely, I note that you expressed your own opinion about what it takes for SCOTUS to overrule precedent, in which you stated a criterion of “egregiousness” as well as “several other factors that must be met.”
        I assume that this is your opinion, and I would suggest that you might take a look at the Janus decision, as well as look up CRS’s report on SCOTUS reversals of precedent. My favorite Anonymous might want to read them as well.

        1. (per CC, “To overrule precedent, you need more than an incorrect decision, it has to be “egregiously wrong” and meet other Supreme Court standards.”)

  7. Kamala Harris must be impeached and convicted for falsely claiming to be, not merely a “citizen” but a “natural born citizen.”

    “Citizen” is the requirement for Congress.

    “Natural born citizen” is the requirement for President.

    Kamala Harris can never be a “natural born citizen” because her parents were not citizens at the time of her birth.

    Kamala Harris’s parents were not U.S. citizens.

    Kamala Harris’s parents were not naturalized U.S. citizens.

    Kamala Harris was born October 20, 1964.

    Kamala Harris’s mother became merely a permanent “resident” on April 9, 1968, 4 years after Kamala’s birth.

    https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/document/foia/Shyamala_Gopalan_Harris.pdf

    Kamala Harris’s father was a citizen of Jamaica.

    The legal text and reference of the era, The Law of Nations, referenced in Article 1, Section 8, established that “…the natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens.”

    Every president before Obama had two parents who were citizens at the time of birth of the candidate.

    Again, the Supreme Court fails to fulfill its sworn oath to support the Constitution.

    Again, the Supreme Court fails to exert Judicial Review.
    ____________________________________________

    Judicial Review in the United States

    Annotation

    The legitimacy of judicial review and the judge’s approach to judicial review are discussed.

    Abstract

    The doctrine of judicial review holds that the courts are vested with the authority to determine the legitimacy of the acts of the executive and the legislative branches of government.

    – DOJ, Office of Justice Programs
    ___________________________

    “So before we so cavalierly accept Senator Harris’ eligibility for the office of vice president, we should ask her a few questions about the status of her parents at the time of her birth.

    “Were Harris’ parents lawful permanent residents at the time of her birth? If so, then under the actual holding of Wong Kim Ark, she should be deemed a citizen at birth—that is, a natural-born citizen—and hence eligible. Or were they instead, as seems to be the case, merely temporary visitors, perhaps on student visas issued pursuant to Section 101(15)(F) of Title I of the 1952 Immigration Act? If the latter were indeed the case, then derivatively from her parents, Harris was not subject to the complete jurisdiction of the United States at birth, but instead owed her allegiance to a foreign power or powers—Jamaica, in the case of her father, and India, in the case of her mother—and was therefore not entitled to birthright citizenship under the 14th Amendment as originally understood.

    “Interestingly, this recitation of the original meaning of the 14th Amendment Citizenship Clause might also call into question Harris’ eligibility for her current position as a United States senator. Article I, Section 3 of the Constitution specifies that to be eligible for the office of senator, one must have been “nine Years a Citizen of the United States.” If Harris was not a citizen at birth, we would need to know when (if ever) she became a citizen. Her father’s biographical page at Stanford University identifies his citizenship status as follows: “Jamaica (by birth); U.S. (by naturalization).” But there is some dispute over whether he was in fact ever naturalized, and it is also unclear whether Harris’ mother ever became a naturalized citizen. If neither was ever naturalized, or at least not naturalized before Harris’ 16th birthday (which would have allowed her to obtain citizenship derived from their naturalization under the immigration law, at the time), then she would have had to become naturalized herself in order to be a citizen. That does not appear to have ever happened, yet without it, she could not have been “nine Years a Citizen of the United States” before her election to the U.S. Senate.”

    – Newsweek, August 12, 2020

    1. Harris was born in the US – she is a citizen.

      She is still an idiot, but she is a citizen.

      The US has birthright citienship Jus soli

      14th amendment
      All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.

      From the Constitution itself

      No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

      1. You can’t possibly be that obtuse.

        Harris is a “citizen.”

        Harris will never be a “natural born citizen.”

        “Citizen” is the requirement for Congress.

        “Natural Born Citizen” is the requirement for President.
        ___________________________________________

        I take that back, you can.

        1. Nothing in the constitution that says or implies that a “natural born citizen” is anything different from what it says. A person born here that is a citizen. The remained of the presidential clause allows anyone who was a citizen at the time the constitution took effect to also be president. It is clear the requirement is being born here. There is no mention at all about your parents.

          If I am going to take the left on for twisted constitutional reading, the same applies to you.

          Do you have something from our founders that clearly reads the text otherwise ?

          We do not get to manufacture requirements that are not there. Not right, not left.

  8. I Have sent an email to ‘jturley@gwu.edu’ and ‘jturley@law.gwu.edu’ on Wed 9/7/2022 8:02 AM. Please let me know if this email was revived.
    I think that need it is a Civil Right Attorney
    My issues is another sample of the civil right violation that the US done to me. if someone what’s the email, please let me know and I would be glad to provide this. ” this is just a part ” In July 2021, we opened our door to the OIG as he asked by email to speak with us about a Caregiver application that was submitted to the VA and was denied, which also the same VA social worker and VA Physician Assistant advised us to apply but got denied 3 times and told us to not give up and keep appealing. They investigated my PCP (Primary Care Provider at the VA), he is currently a contractor with the VA but used to be many years ago the Captain of the clinic when I was on active duty in the U.S. Coast Guard because they thought I had a friendship with him. The OIG contacted my current supervisor at the time and advised him that I was being interviewed for an active disability fraud investigation. Nevertheless, this same OIG never even tried to speak with both of my Psychologists, which they are very upset about that and never got the chance to advocate on my behalf. In addition, he showed me a statement I supposedly sent to the VA about 10 years ago, which I do not recall. However, deep inside of me it feels real and even now I continue having vivid nightmares about it. I don’t recall mentioning it to anyone; perhaps my wife told me I said weird things or cried at night sometimes. The OIG did not let us talk unless he asked while recording at our family dining table and we felt ceased in our own house for the 4 hours of questioning. Even had to tell our son to go the backyard with a few friends until the OIG and another agent left. He never told us about the investigation until almost the end and pretended to be very friendly asking questions about our house and how clean and neat it was. He never mentioned not even that had the right of representation from the union or attorney. I feel that I was also discriminated, civil right violated and as he mentioned that probably because I worked for the VA I knew how to work the system. (email from OIG will be provide)”

  9. Gong against precedent does not mean the Supreme Court did not follow the law. For instance, do we still follow the precedent of the Dred Scott Decision?

    Since abortion is not in the Constitution, it is up to the legislative process. I have never seen such passionate anger against allowing Americans to decide laws for themselves. Democrat strongholds like CA and NY will have no restrictions, allowing babies to be in danger even in the birth canal. Conservative states will have more restrictions. If citizens do not like either the total lack of restrictions on the one hand, or the many restrictions on the other, then there is a remedy.

    Polls show that a majority of Americans supported Roe v Wade. Polls also show that a majority of Americans supported the restrictions after 15 weeks that was prohibited by Roe v Wade, and at the core of the Dobbs Decision. This means that a majority of Americans are uninformed. It is disingenuous to cite a poll that shows a majority supported Roe v Wade, while not mentioning the contradictory poll that showed a majority supported restrictions not allowed under Roe v Wade.

    1. Karen S, Dred Scott was corrected by the 14th amendment. I think the anger and passion over Dobbs is that before the court decision abortion decisions were generally decided by individual women (not the courts) and after Dobbs abortion decisions will be decided by State legislatures.

      1. Every thing Lincoln did was unconstitutional. It is not possible that the “Reconstruction Amendments” of Karl Marx, Abraham Lincoln and Lincoln’s clearly anti-constitutional, communist successors are anywhere close to being constitutional. The Supreme Court acted 50 years retroactively to correct fundamental law on abortion. The Supreme Court must act 150 years retroactively, imposing Judicial Review, to correct fundamental law on the preposterous, corrupt and improper ratification of, not one but three nearly-impossible-to-ratify amendments to the Constitution, illicitly under the duress of brutal post-war military occupation and oppression. No rational person would believe the “Reconstruction Amendments” are valid and legitimate, their primary beneficiaries must have been compassionately repatriated per extant immigration law on January 1, 1863, the Naturalization Act of 1802.

        Lincoln endeavored mightily to nullify the U.S. Constitution and Statutory Law and was congratulated and commended by Karl Marx (https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/iwma/documents/1864/lincoln-letter.htm) as he engaged in many multiple, egregious crimes of high office and misdemeanors, one of which was addressed by Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Roger B. Taney, for which Lincoln must have been impeached and convicted.

        To wit,

        “The clause in the Constitution which authorizes the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is in the ninth section of the first article. This article is devoted to the Legislative Department of the United States, and has not the slightest reference to the Executive Department.”

        “I can see no ground whatever for supposing that the President in any emergency or in any state of things can authorize the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, or arrest a citizen except in aid of the judicial power.”

        “I have exercised all the power which the Constitution and laws confer on me, but that power has been resisted by a force too strong for me to overcome.”

        – Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, May 28, 1861

      2. Dred Scott was a bad decision.

        While the 14th amendment makes even clearer what the constituions says.
        Dred Scott was wrongly decided and we are not ssupposed to need a constitutional amendment to fix an error of SCOTUS.

      3. Concerned Citizen:

        Good point that the 14th Amendment answered the Dred Scott Decision.

        I would point out that there were laws against abortion prior to Roe v Wade, and after it, there were laws restricting abortion after viability. I wouldn’t say that abortion was entirely decided privately by women either before, or after, Roe. After Dobbs, states can pass abortion laws that are more restrictive, or less restrictive, than allowed under Roe. Roe allowed restrictions after viability. Once Roe was overturned, NY was free to wipe out all abortion restrictions, at the will of their voters. More conservative states can impose more restrictions than were allowed under Roe v Wade.

    2. “Since abortion is not in the Constitution, it is up to the legislative process.”

      Really?

      So is that true for everything that is “not in the Constitution?” Vaccines? Travel? Picnics” Boating? Etc. Etc. “The people” can vote to restrict or criminalize all of those things? Or just abortion?

  10. When Joe Biden decided to pick a running mate he checked off four boxes. 1. black, 2.women, 3. stupid, 4. Partisan Hack. I guess things could be worse. He could have chosen a 1.Native American, 2. women, 3. stupid, 4. Partisan Hack. The thing that disqualified Elizabeth Warren was the fact that her skin wasn’t red enough.

    1. TIT, you’re exactly right. The dims have a check list. Gender, ethnicity, race, sexual preference and especially if you are an alphabet person. Forget about ability.

  11. SCOTUS is activist. They said partisan gerrymandering is ok, have effectively eliminated the Voting Rights Act, are ok with states mandating that doctors let women die due to miscarriage, think coaches coercing students into their religion is just fine, and say that Christians can exempt themselves from any law just by saying “I believe”.

    1. “They said partisan gerrymandering is ok”
      There is no objectively correct way to allocate congressional districts.
      All the court has said is lets keep the partisanship out of the courts.

      Those on the left do not seem to grasp that they are highly partisan.
      They think they are objectively correct on things that have nothing directly to do with truth, or that they are completely wrong about.

      “have effectively eliminated the Voting Rights Act”
      No they took part that was supposed to end after 5 years and finally killed it after 40.

      “are ok with states mandating that doctors let women die due to miscarriage”
      Bizzare statement, Regardless, people die. We can not stop that.
      The problem is trying to mandate people not dying.

      “think coaches coercing students into their religion is just fine”
      You are perfectly free to not participate or to meditate on your naval.

      The establishment clause does not bar religion from life. It bars govenrment from favoring a specific religion.

      “and say that Christians can exempt themselves from any law just by saying “I believe”.”
      The court is wrong here. ANYONE should be able to said “the law can not force me to do that”, not merely the religious.

      It is immoral for government to FORCE any positive moral obligation on another person.
      It is arguably unconstitutional.
      In most cases it violates free exercise.

    2. Most of your point share a common theme – government trying to force what it has no business being involved in.

      Government may not circumvent our rights or the free excercise clause by taking over parts of our lives.

      If coaches can not pray after games, if no one can address religion in public schools, then we can not have public schools.

      THAT is how the constitution works.

      When governmnet collides with our rights – Government must yeild – not our rights.

      Government must be limited because the more govenrment grows the more it interferes with our rights.

      SCOTUS correctly decided that Little Sisters of the Poor and Hobby Lobby did not have to pay for insurance that would provide abortions.

      Why does ANYONE have to pay for insurance that provides abortions ?

      Why does anyone have to pay for insurance that covers other people ?
      Why does anyone have to pay for school for other people ?

      Barny Frank used to say “government is what we chose to do together”

      that is actually completely 180 off. It is free markets that is where we choose to do things together.
      Government is where some of us FORCE others to do as we wish.

      We accept that we can FORCE other to not murder us.

      Not that we can FORCE others to take care of us.

  12. Jonathan: You say: “The fact that the Court overturned a long-standing precedent does not mean that it is an ‘activist’ court”. Really? I suppose this turns on the meaning of “activist”. In Dobbs Justice Alito overturned an almost 50 yr precedent that gave women the right to make their own reproductive decisions. Alito’s decision was deeply flawed. He relied on the misogynistic views of a 17th century English writer and Alito’s own conservative Roman Catholic beliefs that life begins at conception. Imposing his views on all American women, regardless of religious faith or lack thereof, was a supreme act of judicial “activism”. We are now seeing this play out in many states that are banning abortion–even in cases of rape or incest. These draconian measures are having a disastrous effect on women’s and girl’s reproductive choices.

    But there is some significant pushback against Dobbs. In Kansas, a very conservative state, the voters overwhelmingly defeated a measure to overturn the state constitution’s protection for abortion. This, more than anything, shows the vast majority of Americans, male and female, opposed the Dobbs decision. Admittedly, there have been liberal and conservative “activist” Courts. In Plessy and Brown v Board of Education the Court struck down racist practices. The Court sought to give Black people the same rights as white Americans. This was an EXPANSION of fundamental rights. In Dobbs Alito TOOK AWAY a fundamental right–to force women and girls back to a time when they had no rights. This is part of the agenda of the 6-3 conservative “activist” majority–to TAKE AWAY rights that all Americans have come to expect. Even the right to marry someone of the same sex could be on the chopping block.

    When it comes to “court-packing schemes” you accuse the Dems of engaging in “raw and direct political manipulation of the Court”. You didn’t say this when Trump “packed” the Court with 3 right-wing ideologues. In meetings with Senators and in his Senate hearing Brett Kavanaugh promised he would respect court precedents. This all changed after Kavanaugh was confirmed. He showed his own right-wing “activist” agenda.

    But this isn’t just my opinion. In a Gallop poll just after Alito’s draft opinion in Dobbs was leaked, only 25% of Americans had “a great deal” of confidence in the SC. The pollster said this “reached a new low in Gallop’s nearly 50-year trend”. A strong indication that the Court’s 6-3 right-wing agenda does not reflect the views of most Americans. When the Court takes away fundamental rights that is, to use your words, the real “failure of leadership”.

    1. “But there is some significant pushback against Dobbs. In Kansas, a very conservative state, the voters overwhelmingly defeated a measure to overturn the state constitution’s protection for abortion. This, more than anything, shows the vast majority of Americans, male and female, opposed the Dobbs decision.”
      ————–
      Yes Dennis, and this, more than anything, shows how our federalist system is supposed to work. And it supports why Dobbs was correctly decided.

    2. ” In Dobbs Justice Alito overturned an almost 50 yr precedent that gave women the right to make their own reproductive decisions. ”

      This is precisely why Roe was wrong. Courts do not Give us rights.
      Most rights are natural rights – given us by god or nature.
      A few rights are civil rights given to us by government – either the constitution or the legislature.

      Courts do not give us rights – that is pretty much the defintion of activist.

      There are problems with Dobb’s – but fewer than Roe.

      Hopefully Dobb’s will get overturned and replaced with a constitutionally sound decision.

      “He relied on the misogynistic views of a 17th century English”
      That would have been 18th century – the founding and the early 19th – shortly after.
      That is the relevant time frame. If you do not like that amendmend the constitution and your amendment will be understood by Alito and justices for centuries to come according to the norms of the early 21st century.

      “writer and Alito’s own conservative Roman Catholic beliefs that life begins at conception.”
      Nowhere in the decision – in fact obviously not in the decision.
      Dobbs did not ban abortion, as catholics would like, it left it up to the states.

      ” Imposing his views on all American women”
      No imposition at all – Women lost something that never was their to begin with.
      And only then if majorities in their states acted to restrict it.

      “regardless of religious faith or lack thereof, was a supreme act of judicial “activism”. We are now seeing this play out in many states that are banning abortion–even in cases of rape or incest. These draconian measures are having a disastrous effect on women’s and girl’s reproductive choices.”
      They have no effect on reproductive choices. They have some effect on whether or not one can have an abortion.
      Those are not the same. There really is no right to “reproductive choices”, yet still women retain the ability to make them.

      I would further note that as is typical those of you on the left misframe the question.

      There really is no such thing are reproductive rights – much less the right to an abortion.
      For the 300K years of human existance women had some limited choice as to whether they had sex or not.
      But very little ability to do anything about anything beyond that regarding whether they reproduced or not.
      Men had more control over whether they had sex but no control over whether they reproduced.

      Control of reproduction is a modern luxury not a right.

      But even post Dobb’s in every state of the country, women have far greater ability to say no than anywhere else in the world and anytime ever before in history. Further even if they say yes, they have myriads of options to avoid preganacy they never had before. You are bemoaning the loss of an option that is not necescary rarely used, and not available in much of he world – and only in a handful of states. And even then – we are at a time in which travel to another state is trivial.

      So what is it you are wailing about ?

      And what I “reproductive rights” ? Am I entitled to a child if I want one ? Do you have a magic wand that will make people fertile who are not ?

      Is is possible for you to use words clearly ? You want the right to have sex without pregnacy – you have that already.

      “But there is some significant pushback against Dobbs. In Kansas, a very conservative state, the voters overwhelmingly defeated a measure to overturn the state constitution’s protection for abortion.”

      Pretty much shows that Dobb’s is working. People are making choices.

      “This, more than anything, shows the vast majority of Americans, male and female, opposed the Dobbs decision.”
      No it shows they want to be able to have abortions under some circumstances.

      “Admittedly, there have been liberal and conservative “activist” Courts. In Plessy and Brown v Board of Education the Court struck down racist practices. The Court sought to give Black people the same rights as white Americans. This was an EXPANSION of fundamental rights.”

      Plessey was activist and wrong. Brown reversed it. That said education for blacks has not done all that well post Brown.

      “In Dobbs Alito TOOK AWAY a fundamental right–to force women and girls back to a time when they had no rights. This is part of the agenda of the 6-3 conservative “activist” majority–to TAKE AWAY rights that all Americans have come to expect. Even the right to marry someone of the same sex could be on the chopping block.”

      More idiotic word games.

      I think Dobbs was wrongly decided – but So was Roe. Roe was however activist and Dobb’s was not.
      Abortion is not and never was a right, any more than food is, or healthcare is, or podiatry are.

      “When it comes to “court-packing schemes” you accuse the Dems of engaging in “raw and direct political manipulation of the Court”.”
      Yup.

      ” You didn’t say this when Trump “packed” the Court with 3 right-wing ideologues.”
      Republicans spent 40 years accomplishing that. They did not break any rules to do so.
      Republicans could have packed the court by force several times when they controlled the presidency andthe senate.
      They did not.

      “In meetings with Senators and in his Senate hearing Brett Kavanaugh promised he would respect court precedents. This all changed after Kavanaugh was confirmed. He showed his own right-wing “activist” agenda.”
      Precidents are not the biblical word of god. Should Plessey have remained the law of the land ?

      “But this isn’t just my opinion. In a Gallop poll just after Alito’s draft opinion in Dobbs was leaked, only 25% of Americans had “a great deal” of confidence in the SC.”
      That would make it the institution in the US with the greatest public support.

      “The pollster said this “reached a new low in Gallop’s nearly 50-year trend”. A strong indication that the Court’s 6-3 right-wing agenda does not reflect the views of most Americans.”

      We are not a democracy. We do not govern by poll, especially not momentary ones.

      “When the Court takes away fundamental rights that is, to use your words, the real “failure of leadership”.”

      Again word games. Neither a right, nor fundamental.

      I think the court could have done better, I think they could have decided this on the basis of an actual fundimental right.
      But abortion is not fundimental nor a right.

      Regardless, Dobb’s is less bad than Roe.

    3. It is possible that Dobb’s will have a huge political impact – we will see.
      It is possible it will not.

      That is up to people. It may or may not be part of the ballot choice in November.

      But your diatribe is just nonsense. Dobbs did not deprive anyone of a fundimental right or even a right.

      Dobbs was wrong, but less wrong than Roe.

      If as you claim abortion is incredibly popular – then states will not pass or strike down restrictive abortion laws

      If things are as you claim – there will be a large backlash against republicans even in red states.

      So far that does not appear to be the case.

      Que Sara Sara

  13. How about thinking people “slam” this sad excuse for a lawyer – turned politician. Did not do well at either!

  14. A few clarifications on what JT said are needed. Only two of the 5 justices who voted to overturn Roe and Casey indicated a willingness to do that in earlier opinions. The Roberts opinions in a 2020 Louisiana abortion case and in the 2022 Dobbs case clearly showed how the Court could have taken a less activist course with respect to abortion that respected precedent or ruled more narrowly. Casey is better described as upholding the central principle in Roe not as effectively gutting it as JT does. To overrule precedent, you need more than an incorrect decision, it has to be “egregiously wrong” and meet other Supreme Court standards.

  15. We have reached a new low in debate, particularly with regard to intellectual honesty. If they don’t like a court decision, they attack the court itself as an institution. This is what you do when you have nothing else to fight with. Small minds……

  16. The Biden Administration is totally tone deaf.
    This is intentional because every action or policy set by this administration has bit an unmitigated disaster.
    Obama was right about Biden…

    So Kamala focuses on RvW as their rallying cry.

    But its not a hot topic and its not enough for the majority of people to ignore the massive cluster F they created.

    She’s right that there are loads of precedence, however SCOTUS has to look at the case law presented to it.
    Roberts again misread what would happen here.

    The issue is that RvW was a bad law but done for the right reasons.

    -G

  17. No mention though of the ultra activist Democrat party that controls both the Legislative and Executive branches of our government. I also question just how much she really knows about the Supreme Court which has been rather quiet for the past few years. Never struck me as anything close to a scholar but instead is a politician and was before when in La La Land even though sitting in the wrong office.

    1. It is a struggle between state and federal rights. Constitution is designed for balance between the two. Federal burearacracy needs to be trimmed.
      Usurping individual rights needs to be stopped. Supreme court is being target to complete the march towards totalitarism.

      1. Yes, at the core this is about states rights vs federal laws.

        The core issue was that women’s health rights were not unified across the country.
        In one state a woman can get safe medical care. In another she would have died in a back alley due to a botched abortion.
        Some women could afford to travel to get an abortion, others could not thus risking their lives in that ‘back street’.

        So w RvW, you saw a leveling of the playing field.
        But it was a bad ruling but done for the right reason.

        1. Ian:

          Why would a woman have died in a back alley due to a botched abortion? If NY allows abortion up to birth, as long as the infant does not draw breath, but Nevada restricts abortion after 24 weeks, does that mean if a woman is 39 weeks pregnant and suddenly decides she despises the father of her child and wants an abortion, that she will die in a back alley due to a botched abortion? Or does it mean that she will have the child?

          There is a fundamental difference of opinion as to whether abortion should be referred to as “health care.” The purpose of an abortion is to kill the infant, regardless of the motivation. It might be because the woman hates the father, or lost her job. It might be because the infant was diagnosed with a birth defect. Abortion is not health care for the person on whom it is performed – the fetus.

          Now, some would argue that there are specific instances in which ending a pregnancy saves the life of the mother, such as an ectopic pregnancy, and thus it should be deemed health care. I agree, up to a point. There are indeed cases in which a pregnancy must be terminated immediately to save the mother’s life. Pregnancy termination means the baby is removed from the womb. Labor and delivery or a C section terminate a pregnancy. Taking the extra step of killing the fetus has nothing whatsoever to do with the mother’s health. If a fetus has not reached viability, then removal from the womb is fatal. If the fetus has reached viability, then the fetus might be saved. Claiming that deliberately killing a fetus is health care for the mother seems illogical. One could argue that the act of removing an ectopic pregnancy kills the fetus, and I agree. But the purpose of removing an ectopic pregnancy is to save the mother; the goal is not to kill the child, but rather there is no way currently to save him or her.

          Arguing for abortion, or regarding restrictions, should honestly look at the facts. The goal of abortion is to kill the child, whether the child is unwanted, or has an abnormality. An abnormality may be incompatible with life, or the mother might decide the fetus is unwanted as a burden or imperfect. When a mother has no health issues, and aborts a healthy fetus either before or after viability, it is because she wants that child dead. An abortion that occurs in the 2nd trimester requires cervical dilation. The abortionist reaches in blind, grips any part of the baby encountered with a forceps that does not release, and then twists off that part, brining it out. One piece of the live baby at a time – legs, arms, head, torso. Then they reassemble all the pieces to ensure they didn’t miss anything, like little toes. An abortion that occurs in the third trimester, if the fetus is alive, he or she receives a lethal injection guided through ultrasound. The mother goes home, then returns the next day to verify the baby is dead. She is induced, and delivers a stillborn. If the baby survived the lethal injection, it is tried again. A mother in her third trimester cannot escape labor and delivery unless she has a C-section. An abortion in the third trimester takes longer, and carries more risk, than just delivering the infant alive. Aborting the baby does not save the mother’s life. An emergency C-section would do that. Removing a pregnancy before natural delivery might indeed qualify as health care for the mother; deliberately killing the fetus as the goal does not.

          Some would argue that it’s inconceivable that any woman would abort a healthy baby after 24 weeks. I assumed that was the case, too. However, the case of Dr Gosnell proved me wrong. There was a line of women who wanted their healthy, viable pregnancies aborted. There are absolutely women who dissociate their swollen bellies with the babies within. I am convinced that if our abdomen’s were transparent, there would be fewer abortions.

          1. What an insightful comment. I wonder how many people would support abortion as “healthcare” if they read it. I also note how often supporters of the practice add the words “or health of the mother” to their life justification, but when pressed, admit that health to them also means emotional well-being.

          2. @Karen

            You are thinking in today’s terms.
            You need to go back to the 60’a and early 70’s prior to RvW

            Too many people weren’t alive back then and most people who were old enough to understand the 50’s and later … are in the minority.

            You clearly don’t understand the issue or fetal development.

            1. Ian, what don’t I understand about fetal development? What don’t you think I understand about the issue of abortion?

        2. Yes, at the core this is about states rights vs federal laws.

          I find it helpful to replace the word “right” with power. Our form of government as about how the people delegate Power to the governing bodies created by the people.

          So “State rights”, are really State Power. Conflicts between State Power and Federal power. SCOTUS ignored this in ROE, Ignored the fact the Federal Govt (SCOTUS) never had the constitutional power to involve themselves. Dobbs simply states the obvious.

          Democrats have spent generations (since the Great Depression) amassing political power at the Federal Level.

          Democrats are not going to cede power they have worked hard to strip away from the People, and States.

          I came upon this Rights/Power explanation in 2cnd amendment debates…..How is it possible Law Enforcement are Armed? Very simple. The power to be armed was delegated by the people, to Law Enforcement. Power can only be delegated from the entity that posses that power. In this case the POWER is identified in the BoR, by explicitly barring the govt(federal govt) from infringing on the Power(Right)

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