Thursday, September 10, 2015

Kim Davis' lawyer mistakes the losing SCOTUS opinions for the winning opinion

Point 1:   Even Fox News host Gregg Jarrett said this about Kim Davis:   “When she took the job she swore to uphold the law. . . . We rely on government officials to do that. They can’t just pick and choose what laws they like, which ones they don’t. If they were allowed to do that, wouldn’t that lead to chaos, anarchy and so forth?”

And Fox News host Shepard Smith pointed out that Kim Davis and her lawyer keep moving the goal post:   first they wanted accommodation, so she didn't have to sign the licenses herself.   On release from jail, the judge gave her that accommodation:   just don't interfere with deputy clerks issuing licenses.   Now she threatens not to comply with that.   It was also Shep Smith who contrasted how religious zealots fear-monger about Sharia law but are all in for theocracy when it is their theocracy.

The point is:   These are Fox News hosts.  Even they get it  -- at least some of them do.

Point 2:   Where did Davis' attorney and all the other conservative politicians and pundits get the idea that SCOTUS might not have the authority to do what it did?   That's easy.   It's right there in the dissenting opinions of Justices Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito in the marriage equality case.    As John Culhane says:  "all four . . . brim with the kind of intemperate language that seems calculated to foster disrespect for the rule of law."

Scalia, in particular, denounced the decision as not based in law but rather "far beyond the outer reaches of this Court's authority."  Thomas warned that it would have “potentially ruinous consequences for religious liberty.”  Chief Justice Roberts himself predicted that people might not accept the court's decision.    Culhane concludes his article with this:

It was the U.S. Supreme Court’s dissenting Justices who dug the rabbit hole. . . . their questioning of the very legitimacy of the Supreme Court is having predictably pernicious consequences. They should be ashamed of the anarchy they have unleashed. 

So, why are we surprised that this is the line of attack taken by Liberty Council in representing (or manipulating) Kim Davis?

Point 3:    Yes, but remember this:
Those dissents were the losing opinions in the case.


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