Supreme Court

That's What I Call a Court-Packing Plan

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Just last month, liberal George Washington University law professor Jeffrey Rosen was excited at the thought of President Barack Obama waging political war on the Supreme Court. Now Rosen has an even better idea. Obama should join the Court and take matters into his own hands. As Rosen explains in The Washington Post:

Though Obama has struggled to find his footing in the White House, his education, temperament and experience make him ideally suited to lead the liberal wing of the court, especially at a time when a narrow conservative majority seems increasingly intent on challenging progressive economic reforms for the first time since the New Deal. Obama is clearly eager to take on the four truly conservative justices—Samuel Alito, John Roberts, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas—as his State of the Union smackdown suggests. But as president, he's constrained by that pesky separation of powers. So what better way to engage the fight than to join the bench?

It would be unusual, but not difficult, for Obama to get himself on the Supreme Court. He could nominate himself to replace John Paul Stevens, for example, or he could gamble and promise Hillary Rodham Clinton that he won't run for reelection in 2012 in exchange for a pledge of appointment to the next vacancy. And although, as president, Obama has seemed haunted by the example of his political hero, Abraham Lincoln, on the Supreme Court, he could take up the mantle of the greatest liberal justice of the 20th century, Louis Brandeis, another community organizer with a background in politics. In the end, Obama's legacy on the court might surpass his legacy in the White House.

It might!

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  1. I think the headline for this should’ve been “If you can’t beat
    ’em, join ’em.”

    1. er .. he could recess himself and resign. Joe will certainly renominate him when Republicans take control of the Senate.

  2. Though Obama has struggled to find his footing in the White House, his education, temperament and experience make him ideally suited to lead the liberal wing of the court[…]

    Next thing we’ll know, somebody will also say he’s also a military genius and the greatest scientist that ever lived . . .

    1. Well, he did win a prize.

      1. “Well, he did win a prize.”

        Yes, he won a “Peace” prize for expanding a war. War is now peace. George Orwell would be proud.

      2. well yeah … but so does every ‘tard who opens a crackerjack box.

    2. this is an interesting idea; the problem with it is that BHO is no more qualified for the supreme court than Harriet Miers, not that a problem of qualifications has hindered BHO in the past.

  3. Good Lord. He’s a failure as a President, so lets give him lifetime tenure on the Court!

    Can you imagine the gall it would take to say “There isn’t anyone better qualified than me to be a Justice, so I nominate myself!”

    Can you imagine the naivete to cut a deal with the Clintons?

    Can you imagine the fury of the unwashed at having a Supreme Court seat bought and sold like this?

    “Hey, a Supreme Court position is a valuable thing. You don’t just give it away.”

    1. “”Can you imagine the gall it would take to say “There isn’t anyone better qualified than me to be a Justice, so I nominate myself!””

      If any living human being has such gall it is our Lord and Savior Barack Hussein Obama II.

    2. Another statist idiot on the Court, and a new moron in the White House. Great idea.

      I’ve seen no evidence that Obama has sufficient legal scholarship to be any good on the Court, anyway.

      1. Come on now PL, we all know that Harvard Law Reviewers make the best Supreme Court judges. They know where the commas go and can ram the commerce clause through the smallest opening.

        Don’t forget his NBA, NFL and NASCAR awards.

    3. Can you imagine the gall it would take to say “There isn’t anyone better qualified than me to be a Justice, so I nominate myself!”

      Howard Schnellenberger did it. Well, not for supreme court, but same thing.

      1. Hey, at least he was a good coach once.

  4. In the end, Obama’s legacy on the court might surpass his legacy in the White House.

    Maybe will be just like Jus. Roger B. Taney’s legacy!

    1. Taney had a much cooler mustache.

      1. Can Obama even grow facial hair?

  5. So this guy is a law professor, eh?

    No wonder the legal profession in this country is such a mess.

    1. He’s not just a lawyer but also a constitutional scholar (so we’re told). Interestingly, he seems to have no qualms with the extralegal $1.5 trillion (that a million times a million) Fed/Treasury “program” to buy up MBS.

      For an excellent write up: http://www.hussmanfunds.com/wmc/wmc100216.htm

      1. I had to read the Constitution and memorize part of it for History in high school. Clearly I’m also a Constitutional scholar.

      2. For someone who is supposed to be a “constitutional scholar,” he demonstrates a remarkable and profound lack of understanding of our Constitution. Or perhaps he harbors merely distaste and disdain for it, which, when manifested, merely appears as a lack of understanding. It could well be he fully understands it; yet because of his disagreement with our foundational core principles, he chooses to disregard them.

  6. Shouldn’t a rudimentary understanding of the implications of Citizens United and not a willful misrepresentation of the case be at least a minimum for a federal court appointment?

    1. It’s not either/or – he does have a rudimentary understanding (after reading the briefs)and he choses to misrepresent. Actually, he sounds like an ideal candidate.

  7. I am fucking speechless. I thought he was the chosen one. The once in a generation nation realigning president. Now just a year later, he should resign and be the forth vote in the dissent on every controversial case? From Hope and Change to “we only lost to Alito, Kennedy, Scalia, Thomas and Roberts by one vote but we wrote a blistering dissent.” Wow how the mighty have fallen. Seriously, isn’t the Post supposed to be on Obama’s side?

    1. If Republicans win control of the House and Senate I could see him nominate himself for a Federal Court vacancy (if one exists) in the period between the election and the new session of Congress. I am not sure he could handle having a Congress that is not in Democratic hands. He can barely stand not having a 60 vote majority in the Senate. How could he cope with Republican majorities in both the House and the Senate?

      1. He could fly Air Force One into an IRS building, leaving behind a manifesto that denounces capitalism, Enron, GW Bush, pharmaceutical companies, and insurance companies.

        The Washington Post will then explain that he was a Tea Party man all along.

  8. Why do so many people assume he is so bright? His expertise is apparently constitutional law and yet he seems to know little about the constitution. He does seem good at speaking and perhaps one day he can aspire to obtaining a position as a morning drive time DJ.

    1. Which is the whiter of the two Gumbels? Maybe he can shoot for that job.

      1. I’m still bummed that they cancelled Gumbel 2 Gumbel.

      2. White people like Wayne Brady because he makes Bryant Gumbel look like Malcolm X.

    2. He is not bright. If he were that bright he would have been a court clerk coming out of Harvard and he would have been something besides an adjunct at Chicago. It is not that he is stupid. It is that he is not some giant brain.

      1. I must say, for all the crap that has been written about Thomas, I have no doubts that he runs circles around Obama in terms of legal expertise.

    3. He is not stupid. He is just a liar. He knows as well as anyone else about the constitution. The whole point of constitutional law as an academic discipline is to be able to pretend that the plain meaning of the words in front of you isn’t the real meaning.

      1. He is not stupid. He is just a liar.

        Whatever happened to “a little from column A, a little from column B”?

      2. He knows as well as anyone else about the constitution.

        And therein lies the problem. Most “anyone elses” know very little about the Constitution. His knowledge appears about average – at least if his actions are to be judged as representing his constitutional knowledge. Or his respect for the Constitution.

    4. I don’t get where people say he’s a good speaker. To me he’s monotone and without substance.. and I voted for Kerry..

      1. He doesn’t say ain’t, yo or whudup and rarely calls people nigga or shawty.

        1. My point exactly! OOPS..

  9. Shades of W. H. Taft.

    Don’t know much about the man, excepting that he was monstrously fat. Anyone know what kind of president he was? How about Chief Justice?

    1. From wiki –

      “In his first and only term, President Taft’s domestic agenda emphasized trust-busting, civil service reform, strengthening the Interstate Commerce Commission, improving the performance of the postal service, and passage of the Sixteenth Amendment. Abroad, Taft sought to further the economic development of undeveloped nations in Latin America and Asia through the method he termed “Dollar Diplomacy.” However, Taft often alienated his own key constituencies, and was overwhelmingly defeated in his bid for a second term in the presidential election of 1912.”

      1. I’m starting to see a parallel here…

      2. Shame no one offered him a “wafer-thin mint” early in his administration.

        1. Get me a bucket – I’m gonna puke

      3. He seriously pissed off Teddy Roosevelt, so he has that going for him. And he was the last president with facial hair.

  10. “In the end, Obama’s legacy on the court might surpass his legacy in the White House.”

    Total shit+ does not impress.

  11. Can you say President Joe Biden with a straight face?

    1. Hmmmm…. Hmmmm…. NO! I CAN’T!

      Bwa ha ha ha!!! ROTFL!

      Oh, man [regaining composure]… Don’t test me like that again!

    2. I threw up a little at the thought and almost crapped myself.

  12. Can you imagine the gall it would take to say “There isn’t anyone better qualified than me to be a Justice, so I nominate myself!”

    No, I can’t imagine it. But if anyone could pull it off, it’s the guy who thought commemorating the fall of the Berlin Wall (besides being less worthy of a trip to Europe than a vain attempt to secure the Olympics for his hometown) was an opportunity to expound on how he had struggled too. I couldn’t have imagined anyone with that much gall (or rather that self absorbed and obsessed) either.

    Obama’s legacy on the court might surpass his legacy in the White House.

    Well, there is something to be said for setting realistic goals.

  13. he’s almost as qualified as Harriet Miers, although he doesn’t have as much White House experience

    1. Nor as much Constitutional law experience, as Miers did have to deal with those matters as WH council, but it was absurd of Bush to nominate her regardless.

      Would these guys please stop grading Obama on a curve. It isn’t helping him adjust to reality.

  14. “especially at a time when a narrow conservative majority seems increasingly intent on challenging progressive economic reforms for the first time since the New Deal.”

    Did I miss something? What decision this year “challenged progressive economic reforms”?

    Also – this idea is too stupid to encompass my brain.

    1. Any indication that the court might be considering the possibility that the commerce clause is not a carte blanche grant of power to the government is perceived as a challenge to progressive economic reforms.

  15. He would have to resign to do that right?

    Oh … I forgot we no longer follow the Constitution so that does not matter anymore ….

  16. “In the end, Obama’s legacy on the court might surpass his legacy in the White House.”

    In other words he could screw up the country eve more on the USSC than he could as POTUS.

  17. Is it just me or is this idea stupider than an episode of Two and a Half Men?

    1. I’ve never seen that show but have always wondered about the title. Is the half man a hermaphrodite?

      1. Yes.

        But if that means you’re going to start watching it, I’ll acknowledge that one can take a joke too far.

      2. you are correct, it’s jon cryer

        1. Ahh…you bastard, that was going to be my joke.

  18. Why wait until he’s out of office!?

    1. 35 months seems like an eternity…

  19. Rosen has permenently lost any credibility he may have ever had. I’d love to get my hands on the stuff he was smoking when he came up with this idea.

  20. I don’t see why he would resign the Presidency. There’s nothing in the Constitution saying that the President can’t also be on the Supreme Court, or vice versa.

    1. There aren’t many things that I can imagine BHO doing that would get him impeached, but that might do it.

    2. No one can serve in two branches of government at once. Pretty much defeats the purpose of divided government, checks and balances, etc. Shit, why not run for Senate, too?

    3. I’m pretty sure he’d have to resign:

      “The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other Emolument from the United States, or any of them.”

      “The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behavior, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Services a Compensation which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office.”

      Since the President is prohibited from receiving compensation from the United States or any of the states while in office and a member of the Supreme Court must be paid a compensation – which would come from the United States – I’m pretty sure that’s locked up tight.

  21. I just jizzed in my pants.

    1. So, like Monica Lewinsky, you got a stain on your dress?

  22. Don’t you have to know something about the Constitution to be on the Supreme Court?

    1. Apparently not.

    2. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

      “Aroo! Maybe so. But I know a place where the Constitution doesn’t mean squat.” [cut to Supreme Court]

      1. That episode was on yesterday.

  23. I don’t see why he would resign the Presidency. There’s nothing in the Constitution saying that the President can’t also be on the Supreme Court, or vice versa.

    And the Speaker of the House doesn’t technically have to be a member of the House……

    1. Indeed, and he could still sit as the junior Senator from Illinois, as well. Let us not forget that the Constitution does not set a minimum on the number of members of the Supreme Court, either. It could be one.

      Essentially, the Constitution could allow someone to be the President, the sold Justice of the Supreme Court, the Speaker of the House, and a Senator at the same time. Of course, that would offend our republican sensibilities, so Obama would need a title of modesty, such as Lieutenant Major.

      1. Actually, I believe the Constitution says somewhere you can only hold one office at a time.

        1. So on Monday’s he’s the president, on Tuesdays…

      2. See what I wrote above. The way it reads to me, since the Constitution requires that the President, Justices, and (didn’t mention above, but same goes) members of Congress to receive compensation for their services and the President and Justices are prohibited from receiving compensation from the United States for anything other their respective positions I’m fairly certain no one person would constitutionally be able to hold multiple offices in different branches of the government at the same time.

        Also:

        “…and no Person holding any Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either House during his Continuance in Office.”

  24. Do any of our “finest legal minds” grasp the notion that this country was explicitly founded as a refutation of inherited monarchical power?

  25. It would be great if Obama promised not to run against Hillary in 2012 in exchange for a promise that she would appoint him, only for Hillary to lose in 2012 (hopefully to someone not Palin) and leave Obama without the presidency or a position in the Supreme Court. It would be like the dog carrying a bone who saw his own reflection.

  26. Obama can’t take a position on the Court. Justices can’t use teleprompters.

    1. But, they also don’t need to speak in front of the entire country as often. And they can’t be voted out of office. Perfect for him in every respect!

      1. SCOTUS justices don’t need to speak AT ALL, as Justice Thomas has noted, and their opinions, assuming they don’t just always sign on to one of the other opinions, can be drafted by their law clerks.

        It could literally be a do-nothing job for someone so inclined, with no possibility of being fired for slacking off.

        1. Man, I gotta look into this – my kinda job

        2. “It could literally be a do-nothing job for someone so inclined, with no possibility of being fired for slacking off.”

          So it is sort of like being a New York City Public School teacher?

    2. If you read any of the expos?s of the Court, it’s absolutely true than some justices, especially those entering senility, do nothing but sign clerk opinions. Great gig.

  27. We can’t use the term retard anymore, so I’ll just say your an idiot.

    1. Non-idiots prefer the phrasing “you’re an idiot” …

      Joez law strikes again!

      1. Tim you may want to change your/you’re email address 😉

  28. Well, does Obama want to be a Supreme Court Justice? He would probably not like that since he cannot issue Executive Orders if he works the bench . . .

  29. “Fetch me some coffee, Boy!”

  30. ‘His expertise is apparently constitutional law and yet he seems to know little about the constitution.’

    Constitutional law is usually defined, in the law schools, to mean ‘taking liberal supreme court precedents and building on them.’ The precedents themselves involved considerable stretching of the Constitution on the part of the Court, and the con law professors generally want the Court to stretch it even more.

  31. The Liberal version of
    “We should just send in Chuck Noris, he would kick all the Talibans asses with one hand tied behind his back.”

    1. Chuck Norris turned down a Supreme Court appointment because interpreting the Constitution is too easy. He interprets ancient Coptic manuscripts in his sleep, and during his waking hours, he works out pi to a billion places while bench-pressing Ford’s entire fleet of trucks and . . .

      etc.

  32. So, the plan is for Obama to get one more honor for which he’s completely unqualified? What, the presidency and the peace prize weren’t enough?

    -jcr

    1. jealous?

  33. I have a cunning plan: Get the U.N. to waive that bit about citizens of permanent Security Council nations being ineligible for the SecGen gig for, you guessed it, Obama.

    1. Yeah, he could do that after he retires from President of the Supreme Court.

  34. or he could gamble and promise Hillary Rodham Clinton that he won’t run for reelection in 2012 in exchange for a pledge of appointment to the next vacancy.

    Or he could bet on the Lions to win the next Super Bowl. I think that would give him better odds for success.

  35. War is now peace. George Orwell would be proud.

    It is only if you’re an old Swedish fuckwad.

    1. Norwegian.

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