Thursday, June 21, 2012

5-4: The Problem with the Supreme Court

The United States Supreme Court is still one of the most popular institutions in America (despite declining poll numbers)

Within the next few weeks, the Court will hand down its’ decisions for the term.

 The most anticipated of these decisions will be the health care reform bill dubbed “Obamacare."

Although I believe that the Supreme Court is the proper venue for such challenges, the 5-4 nature of these decisions often creates more problems than they solve.

Earl Warren took great pains to ensure a 9-0 decision in Brown vs. Board of Education because he understood its’ importance. We need more 9-0 decisions and less of these 5-4 decisions.

5-4 decisions imply a sharply divided court that could change its’ decision, if a justice is replaced due to retirement or death.

When a majority is that slim and malleable, we really fail to meaningfully settle important constitutional questions for the long term.

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