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InsiderOnline Blog: July 2004

A Court of Many Colors

After hearing from three reporters and three legal scholars dedicated to studying the Supreme Court, the one thing I know for certain about this court is that it's hard to know much for certain about it.

Law professor Walter Dellinger said "they have a lack of deference to almost anyone else," while journalist Tony Mauro said the court "is not so ideological that it is willing to ignore procedural niceties" to rule as it wants. But sometimes it uses procedural niceties as it sees fit to avoid ruling on the merits of a case, as most of the panelists agreed it did in the Pledge of Allegiance case.

But despite its occasional ducking and punting, the court is not timid, according to Dellinger, who said it "places itself at the center of the constitutional universe," and legal scholar Miguel Estrada who said, "this is a court who is deeply unanimous -- they all think they should be governing the country." Law professor Douglas Kmiec, however, said that "the court has no desire to govern the country singlehandedly."

Hmmm, can I get a ruling on this? Hear the many different opinions on this court and its rulings here and let it be a reminder to you never to make friends with anyone with nine personalities.

Posted on 07/12/04 02:55 PM by Mary Katherine Ham

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