Skip to comments.Why the Roberts Court Is Less Conservative Than You Think
Posted on 06/27/2014 6:43:51 AM PDT by koanhead
The Roberts Court certainly seems like a conservative juggernaut. And, yes, from campaign finance to race to religion, it has moved the law dramatically to the right. But Wednesday's Supreme Court decision on cell-phone privacy shows that this isn't the entire story. In a number of significant areas of law, a majority of the Roberts Court will line up behind rulings that are not so much conservative as libertarian, often with a surprisingly progressive bent.
That is certainly true of Riley v. California, in which Chief Justice John Roberts, on behalf of his unanimous colleagues, concluded Wednesday that police may generally not search an arrestee's cell phone without due process....
And it's only the latest case in which the court's relatively liberal justices have peeled off one of the court's conservatives--most often Justice Anthony Kennedy, who leans libertarian on many issues, or Justice Antonin Scalia, whose originalism sometimes leads him to expansive readings of the protections provided by the Bill of Rights--to craft a majority in favor of a libertarian-liberal outcome. Consider, for example, Safford v. Redding, a 2009 case in which liberal and libertarian organizations successfully argued that the strip search of a schoolgirl violated the Fourth Amendment. Or United States v. Jones, a 2012 case in which the same coalition persuaded the court that attaching a GPS tracking device to a car to monitor its location violates the Fourth Amendment.
Another case that may end up at the court is ACLU v. Clapper, which challenges the constitutionality of the National Security Agency's collection of Americans' phone records. Libertarians will definitely join liberals to urge the court in fighting this invasion of Americans' privacy....
The alliance of liberal and libertarian advocates will only get stronger in future terms because obviously the justices are listening....
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
In particular, conservatives need to loudly get out in front on the Big Brother civil-liberties issues that are coming to the forefront (commendably, some conservatives already are, but the GOP Establishment has been much too tolerant of Big Brother apologists like the odious (and fortunately on his way out) Mike Rogers). As long as civil liberties is seen primarily as a "liberal" issue, conservatives are behind the eight ball.
I wonder why the authors think conservatives would be in favor of police not needing a warrant to search your phone.
There have been several FR threads on the subject, and I don’t think I’ve seen a single post disagreeing with the decision.
Libertarian idiot authors perhaps, trying to draw distinctions that do not exist. Conservatism and libertarianism overlap a good 80-90%.
Who thinks that?
More shallow end analysis of the Supreme Court from the Compost. Doug Kendall and Brannie Gorod are utterly clueless when talking about things “conservative” in terms of jurisprudence, and probably in any other context, as well.
I think it’s simpler than that.
Civil liberties are Good, conservatives are Bad. Therefore conservatives are opposed to civil liberties.
Ya know, if they wanted to know what conservatives believe, they could join FR and post a vanity question. They’d get their ears talked off.
But they’d rather sit up there in the WP offices and attack straw men.
oh Jeeeze.....I'm laughing so hard I'm crying. what vapid POSs those WAPO idjits are
These aren’t WP people - they are members of a libertarian leaning think tank.
Roberts seems to be more interested in “consensus” on the court and unanimous decisions than advancing a conservative ideology. I suppose in some ways that can be good because conservatives have been getting half a loaf in most of these recent decisions, but the flip side is liberals also get half a loaf in the process.
Not less than I think (and some others here). I’ve been railing at the Roberts Court for some time. They are NOT Conservative. Oh they toss us a little bone now and again. But they are the grand architects of an American police state run, and owned, by mega corporations not in any way answerable to the People.
Worst SCOTUS in our history.
OK. My point remains pretty much the same. If you want to know what conservatives believe, why not ask them?
What about any of these issues would a conservative support? All of them are implemented by lefties, so how does it make the left against them?
Great point. What conservative thinks a police state is a good thing? None that I know of.
There are some drug warriors here defending tossing a flash bang in a crib.
The current crop of supremes could hardly be less conservative than I think they are.
Straw men are so much fun to knock down, and it enables you think you’re so intelligent.
“Constitutional Accountability Center (CAC) is a think tank, law firm, and action center dedicated to fulfilling the progressive promise of our Constitutions text and history.”
They are left wing. It’s no accident that the WP went to them.
The Compost stoops to new lows, implying the liberals dragged a conservative kicking and screaming to this ruling while most disagreed with it. The Conservatives were unanimous for the ruling. The MSM is pure and utter rubbish. I hate their ever living guts.
Not even close to the worst SCOTUS in our history. Our nation would not have been primed for a fall if a parade of bad decisions had not been handed down between the Civil War and the 1980s.
That must be pretty bad, because I don’t think Roberts is conservative at all.
that’s why they were so slippery on their website ..they are ashamed of what they really believe...
Yep, and they should be ashamed. “Progressive” is all I needed to see, but I kept on reading like a masochist. Cass Sunstein could have written most of it.
I got so tired of the pabulum on their site - that I got bored and quit before i saw the word progressive. My bad - assumed they were libertarians, many of whom like to work against conservatives more than working against libtards.
Nothing at all conservative about the Roberts Supreme Court.
He gave the country ObamaCare, and very soon will make queer “marriage” legal in all 50 states. Both Roberts and Kennedy will vote for queer “marriage”. Both republican appointees. Roberts and Kennedy will turn out to be the two most liberal judges republicans ever appointed to the Supreme Court. Kennedy started the slippery slope to homo “marriage” when he ruled sodomy was a “right”, and no longer illegal.
Seriously John Roberts a Conservative? More like traitor, Conservatives don’t betray their constitution by permitting Government effectively unlimited power over the individual.
None of Traitor John’s other ruling have any significant compared to that, as the Federal Government in Robert’s supposed twisted world simply need to tax us into submission.
Why does our privacy mean a thing, when the Government could simply fine us with an un-payable tax should we not ‘consent’?
This is the oldest legal run around in the Federal Government’s book, remember Al Capone didn’t go to jail for killing people but rather tax evasion.
If Roberts ever actually believed his other edicts were meaningful then it simply means Roberts is even more of a short sighted idiot than a normal traitor.
Kennedy is probably a flaming sodomite himself. We should post his address and phone number to all the fag forums. “Call for a good time”
The one thing nether Kennedy, Roberts nor any of the other liberal federal employees in black robes are is Constitution oath keepers. If they were, they would know good in well the Federal Constitution’s omission on this subject was quite clearly and explicitly proposed for reserving such judgement to the people and their States. NOT FEDERAL EMPLOYEES IN BLACK ROBES!
Roberts was go down in history as the worst chief justice of the Supreme Court. He has never been a conservative. As for his sexual orientation, he invited his lesbian first cousin to the proceedings last year when they ruled on DOMA. She had a first row sit, and was interviewed by the press before and after the verdict. Before the verdict she said she “just knew” that her cousin would “do the right thing”, after the verdict she voiced disappointment, saying she had full confidence in Roberts if the court ever hears “marriage equality”.
Thank George W. Bush for this disaster in a robe. He had about two years on the bench when goofball Bush chose him to the court, and as the Chief Justice on top of that! He’s worthless.
I of course agree, Roberts is an ideological nutcase like the left he has acted to strip the moral fiber from this country with one hand while striping all meaningful limits upon its formerly constitutional Government with the other thus setting a course and providing the impulse towards a despotic self-destructive order on a scale the likes of which we haven’t seen sense the fall of Rome.
A newspaper that supports a President who oversees NSA “eavesdropping” on cell phone communications, praising a USSC ruling that preserves cell phone privacy.
What a stupid headline
Who but a commie would call it conservative?
The problem goes back at least as far as the Slaughterhouse cases (in which an activist court invented lame rationalizations to ignore the plain meaning and intent of the Fourteenth Amendment). This had the dual effects of denying rights that were supposed to be protected and opening the field to legal mutations of the 14th rather than an organic development of its correct meaning (i.e. binding states to respect individual rights, as opposed to guaranteeing any old thing a judge can dream up).