Skip to comments.Scalia, Sotomayor Exchange Barbs in High Court Ruling
Posted on 02/28/2011 8:47:47 PM PST by Nachum
Sparing no arrow from his rhetorical quiver, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia fired away in dissent of Monday's 6-2 ruling that puts a Michigan man back on the hook for a drug murder and casts doubt on the reach of a hallmark opinion penned by the court's longest serving member.
Scalia called Monday's decision a "mistake," "patently incorrect," "incoherent" and a "gross distortion of the law."
Over time, all members of the high court have been subjected to Scalia's caustic writings. This time it was Justice Sonia Sotomayor who was responsible for articulating the court's position--joined by five of her colleagues--that the comments made by a victim hours before he died were admissible during the trial of his shooter.
The decision drew a fiery response from Scalia who said the ruling "distorts our Confrontation Clause jurisprudence and leaves it in a shambles. Instead of clarifying the law, the Court makes itself the obfuscator of last resort."
(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...
In Plato’s Republic, Socrates tried to define justice. He had the earliest version of a liberal, Thrasymachus, delivering silly opinions that Socrates refuted.
Now we are subject to the same questions, and we are failing.
Majority: Roberts, Alito, Thomas, Kennedy, Breyer, Sotomayor
Dissent: Scalia, Ginsburg
Wow...Ruth Ginsburg and Scalia agreeing in a dissent?
There’s something I hadn’t expected to see anytime soon.
6-2, not exactly a nail biter.
I don’t see this as Scalia slinging “barbs” at Sotomayor. He was comdemning the oppinion and the headline would have been just as accurate if the name Roberts or Thomas had been used instead of Sotomayor.
Gad, I agree with Sonya.
I’m not sure if I would agree with the decision or not, haven’t read it yet.
But in truth, haven’t death-bed type statements always been given a different status as evidence? I mean a death-bed statement is not necessarily considered hear-say, so it is sometimes admissible.
Thomas and Scalia on different sides of a ruling? I thought Justice Thomas was joined at the hip with Justice Scalia! I thought the man wasn't capable of a single cogent thought without the help of Antonin the Benefactor! That's what all my lib friends say, and they only tell the truth (they say).
“obfuscator of last resort”
What a mind.
“Sotomayor said Scalia’s analysis was simplistic”
That’s like Wile E. Coyote telling Albert Einstein that his physics are simplistic.
I hate a world in which a dimwit like Sotomayor gets away with that.
When a leftard says something is “simplistic,” it really means, “I can’t rebut that argument on the merits, but I can intimidate you into thinking that the reason my arguments look bogus to you is that you are not smart enough to understand them.”
Traditionally, an attack victim who believes he is dying is assumed to want to speak the truth when naming his assailant, because he expects to soon face God. This sounds like a straightforward application of that tradition, and why Scalia would get bent out of shape over this sort of exception to the hearsay rule sounds like a minor mystery. Was the victim an atheist?
I know. The funny thing is, ANY time they are on opposite sides, Scalia is wrong.
Yes juries are likely to give them more credence. But the problem with death bed statements is that the defendant doesn’t get the chance to cross examine the witness, which arguably violates his constitutional right to confront the witnesses against him.
Yeah..its called a dying declaration.
So why did Roberts, Alito, Thomas, and Kennedy all agree IN FULL with Sotomayor? Maybe because she was correct and Scalia was incorrect. Maybe it WASN’T as simple as Scalia tried to make it, his ascerbic wit notwithstanding.
Dying declarations can be admitted into evidence but they usually have to have concrete evidence which backs them up, or else anyone could frame a person they didn’t like and not have to face them in court.
Dying declarations were mainly from criminals who were confessing to a crime(s), often to clear their conscience before they croaked. Can be tricky, but also accurate.
This is what Scalia might have had in mind in his dissent.
She wrote the majority opinion, so yeah, she's at barb ground zero.
That was king of what I was thinking, that there would have to be some kind of corroborating evidence.
And any evidence that contradicted the statement would necessarily be give very great weight.
But I can certainly see where there is a problem if the statement is an accusation and the person accused didn’t have a chance to cross examine him.
I’d be inclined to throw it out if it is accusatory of someone else. The reason being, these rights (right to confront the witnesses against you) were developed and put into place after years, decades of abuses.
And when you yield a little bit on one, then it just becomes easier to yield a little bit on the next one...
Next thing you know we are back to star chambers where you have no right to counsel and have no right to present exculpatory evidence.
IOW, your goose is cooked!
That was king sb That was kind
This case will have little, if any impact on future cases.