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Monday, June 29, 2020

John Roberts' first loyalty

As has become his judicial custom, such as voting with the Supreme Court's liberal bloc in upholding Obamacare's constitutionality with a tortured argument about it being a "tax," Chief Justice John Roberts today joined the liberals in striking down a restrictive Louisiana abortion law via form, not substance.

Image: Anti-abortion advocates wait outside of the Supreme Court for a decision in a Louisiana abortion case on June 29, 2020.

Since his wife is a devout Catholic who once worked as an attorney for Feminists for Life, an anti-abortion feminist group, many reasonably questioned his impartiality when it comes to abortion. But they needn't have worried.

The Chief Justice's first loyalty is to the Supreme Court as an institution. Not to the truth, not to what is right, not even to the Constitution. Here he admits that precedent—even a bad one—is more important than any of those things:

Roberts said he thought the court was wrong to strike down the Texas law, but he voted with the majority because that was the binding precedent. "The Louisiana law imposes a burden on access to abortion just as severe as that imposed by the Texas law, for the same reasons. Therefore Louisiana's law cannot stand under our precedents."

Stare decisis is for suckas, and John Roberts is the biggest one of all.  Roberts is so concerned with the appearance of the Supreme Court as a trusted, apolitical arbiter of constitutional truth that he'll vote with the four liberal ideologues who make no attempt to hide their blatant disregard for it.

1 comment:

Tim Kowal said...

Perhaps Roberts is doing penance for Bush v. Gore. Whether he is protecting his institution from the left, or simply allying with the left, makes little difference in the end. Marshal Petain protected Vichy France, to his eternal shame.