Supreme Court Justice David Souter to Retire at the End of the Current Court Term

Posted 2 CommentsPosted in David Souter, Supreme Court

Supreme Court Justice David Souter speaks during a dedication ceremony at the State Supreme Courthouse in Concord, N.H, July 9, 2008

Of course, Justice David Souter who was appointed by Republican President H.W. Bush and who has surprisingly aligned himself with the left-wing cabal on the U.S. Supreme Court decided to retire when a Democrat President, Barack Obama was elected.

NPR has learned that Supreme Court Justice David Souter is planning to retire at the end of the current court term.

The vacancy will give President Obama his first chance to name a member of the high court and begin to shape its future direction.

At 69, Souter is nowhere near the oldest member of the court. In fact he is in the younger half of the court’s age range with five justices older and just three younger. So far as anyone knows, he is in good health. But he has made clear to friends for some time that he wanted to leave Washington, a city he has never liked, and return to his native New Hampshire. Now, according to reliable sources he has decided to take the plunge and has informed the White House of his decision.

Factors in his decision no doubt include the election of President Obama, who would be more likely to appoint a successor attuned to the principles Souter has followed as a moderate-to-liberal member of the court’s more liberal bloc over the past two decades.

In addition, Souter was apparently satisfied than neither the court’s oldest member, 89-year-old John Paul Stevens, nor its lone woman, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who had cancer surgery over the winter, wanted to retire at the end of this term. Not wanting to cause a second vacancy, Souter apparently had waited to learn his colleague’s plans before deciding his own.

Justice Souter was a disappointment to conservatives and the fall-out over his choice by the first President Bush divided conservatives in his re-election bid which he lost to Bill Clinton.

Flap cannot help but think that this retirement, announced conveniently after Senator Arlen Specter’s switch to the Democrat Party is a poke in both President Bushs’ eyes and the GOP.

The philosophical balance of the court will most likely not change with President Obama’s appointment of a successor. By the way, with the Democrat super majority in the United States Senate, the GOP will have NO ability to give any meaningful advice and consent anyway.

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U.S. Supreme Court to Review Controversial Ruling Striking Down Federal Animal Cruelty Law

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Animal Cruelty, Elton Gallegly, Supreme Court
Elton Gallegly February 2008

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, second left, stands with US Congress members Representative Jane Harman, left, Senator Jon Kyl, center, Representative Elton Gallegly, second right, and Senator Sam Brownback, during their meeting at the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in Jerusalem, Monday, Feb. 18, 2008

This bill which outlawed “animal crush” videos was overturned last year by a federal appeals court and was sponsored by Flap’s Congressman, Elton Gallegly. The United Sates Supreme Court today granted review of the case and will do so in the Fall Term of the court.

The Supreme Court will consider reviving a federal law banning the sale of images of animal cruelty. A federal appeals court said the law illegally restricts this form of free speech.

The justices said Monday that they will look at the decision by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia that also overturned the conviction of Robert Stevens of Pittsville, Va. In 2005, Stevens was convicted and sentenced to 37 months in prison for selling videos of pit bull fights.

The appeals court described one video as including a “gruesome depiction of a pit bull attacking the lower jaw of a domestic farm pig.”

The government says it has a “compelling interest in protecting animals from wanton acts of cruelty.”

The Humane Society of the United States, backing the government, says that the 1999 law played a critical role in stopping the spread of so-called crush videos that show women crushing to death small animals, often with their bare feet or high-heeled shoes.

The case will be argued in the fall.

The case is U.S. v. Stevens, 08-769.

The United States Supreme Court will decide whether there should be a new exception to the First amendment to apply to the portrayals of animal cruelty.

The new First Amendment case the Justices will be hearing next fall or winter involves the constitutionality of a 1999 federal law, passed by Congress in an attempt to curb animal cruelty.  The en banc Third Circuit Court struck down the law as written, thus barring its use in any case no matter what the specific facts.

Although the law has been in effect for ten years, it was used for the first time to prosecute Robert J. Stevens of Pittsville, Va., for selling videotapes of fighting among dogs of the Pit Bull breed.   He was convicted of three counts of violating the 1999 law, and was sentenced to 37 months in prison.

In nullifying the law, the Circuit Court refused to create a new exception to the First Amendment to apply to portrayals of animal cruelty. It noted that the Supreme Court “last declared an entire category of speech unprotected” by the Amendment in 1982 (in New York v. Ferber, involving child pornography).  The Circuit Court rejected a government argument that the depiction of animal cruelty was analogous to the depiction of child pornography.

In taking the case on to the Supreme Court, the Justice Department argued that the 1999 law is narrow in scope, applying only to a “particularly harmful class of speech,” only when that is done for commercial gain, and only when the particular depiction has “no serious societal value.”

It may be a close call for the court, but Flap does not really see any societal value in permitting animal cruelty or “animal crush” videos. As long as the decision is narrow, there should be no danger to our constitutionally protected free speech.

Stay tuned……

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Justice Ginsburg Hints of Supreme Court Vacancy

Posted 4 CommentsPosted in Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court
Scotus Ginsburg

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg speaks to students at New England Law School in Boston Friday, March 13, 2009. Ginsburg said advice and camaraderie from her fellow justices have helped her in her fight against pancreatic cancer. The 75-year-old had surgery last month to remove a small malignant tumor but returned to the bench without missing a day of work.

United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg hinted today that there may be soon a vacancy on the nation’s highest court.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg told law students there could be an opening on the Supreme Court soon but didn’t hint at who might be leaving.

Ginsburg spoke Friday at New England Law’s annual “Law Day.”

In a question-and-answer session, she said the nine justices only take pictures together when a new member is added. She said: “We haven’t had any of those for some time, but surely we will soon.”

Of course, it depends upon the definition of soon. But, Justice Ginsburg is recovering from pancreatic cancer, undergoing chemotherapy and could possibly be contemplating retirement. She is 75.

Politically, Ginsburg one of the most left-leaning Justices could be reassured that President Obama could appoint and obtain confirmation from another committed “Traveller” since the Democrat Party enjoys a near veto proof majority in the United States Senate. This could change in 2010 – so a window of opportunity may exist now.

Stay tuned……

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The Obama Oath MULLIGAN – Obama Retakes The Oath “Out of an Abundance of Caution”

Posted Posted in Barack Obama, John Roberts

Well, the Flubbed Oath FLAP has been rectified.

In golf, they call it a mulligan. A do-over.

There’s no formal name for what President Obama and Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. did last night.

After flubbing his one role on Inauguration Day — administering the oath of office to Obama — Roberts traveled to the White House to re-administer the oath.

Just to make sure.

“We decided it was so much fun . . .,” Obama joked while sitting on a couch in the Map Room. Obama stood and walked over to make small talk with pool reporters as Roberts donned his black robe.

“Are you ready to take the oath?” Roberts asked.

“I am, and we’re going to do it very slowly,” Obama replied.

After a flawless recitation that included no Bible and took 25 seconds, Roberts smiled and said, “Congratulations, again.”

Obama said, “Thank you, sir,” and then added: “All right. The bad news for the [reporters] is there’s 12 more balls.”

One FLAP solved.

Now, Mr. President when will you make your state of Hawaii official birth certiciate available?

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Shocking: VP Joe Biden Starts to Measure Oval Office Drapes and Then Barack Obama Retakes Oath of Office

Posted 8 CommentsPosted in Barack Obama, Joe Biden, John Roberts
Barack Obama’s botched Oath of Office

Due to the FLAP of Barack Obama’s botched Presidential Oath of Office, Obama has retaken the Oath.

Chief Justice John Roberts has administered the presidential oath of office to Barack Obama for a second time just to be on the safe side.

The unusual step came after Roberts flubbed the oath a bit on Tuesday, causing Obama to repeat the wording differently than as prescribed in the Constitution.

White House counsel Greg Craig said Obama took the oath from Roberts again out of an “abundance of caution.”

The chief justice and the president handled the matter privately in the Map Room on Wednesday night.

Well, after Chris Wallace of Fox News in the video above said that Obama was maybe not President. But, really this is over-kill.

Then, there is the issue of Vice President Joe Biden.

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