By a 4-4 vote, the Supreme Court today let stand a lower court decision blocking President Obama’s executive action that would have made roughly five million illegal immigrants eligible for legal status and work permits. This result kills Obama’s executive amnesty, though because of the split vote, it might successfully be revived in the future.
The Court rendered its decision succinctly. It just said: “The judgment is affirmed by an equally divided court.”
There was no statement as to how the eight Justices divided (it’s also not clear what grounds the Justices who wanted to reverse the judgment relied on — i.e., standing, the merits, or both). However, based on the oral argument (as well as common sense), we can be certain that the four Justices appointed by Democratic presidents — Ginsburg, Breyer, Kagan, and Sotomayor — voted to reverse the decision below. That is, whether based on “standing” sophistry or the merits, they voted to allow the president to override Article I of the Constitution and write his own immigration law provisions — a function the Constitution grants only to Congress.
We see once again that the liberal faction of the Supreme Court is an arm of the left. It doesn’t matter whether a Justice is an old-line feminist, an extremely able Ted Kennedy Democrat, a brilliant academic, or an allegedly “wise Latina” selected due to her ethnicity. At the end of the day, if he or she was nominated by a Democratic president, then he or she is a loyal Democrat prepared to perform whatever tricks the Party requires.
For better or worse, this is not true of Justices nominated by a Republican president. We saw this once again in the decision, also issued today, upholding the University of Texas’s “affirmative action” program in the Fisher case.
As bad as that decision is, in a way I’m more alarmed at seeing the liberal Justices marching in lock-step in the immigration case. The principle of color-blindness is fundamental, but Article I is the cornerstone of our democracy.
It seems to me that the system of government established by the Constitution cannot survive if five Democratic nominees sit at the same time on the Supreme Court. In other words, it cannot survive a Hillary Clinton presidency.