July 10, 2020

IF THE GOP STAYS NATIVIST THERE WON'T BE ANY ALLIES APPOINTED NO MATTER HOW LONG HE SITS:

John Roberts' long game (Sam Baker, 7/10/20, Axios)

 Roberts is not turning into a liberal. The law either stays put or moves to the right almost every time he is in the majority, even when it's a majority with the more liberal justices.

But he has a lifetime appointment, a strong sense that it's his duty to preserve public trust in the court, and his own ideas about how to do that.

Roberts' position as the court's only real potential swing vote gives him the power to dictate not just bottom-line outcomes, but also how the court gets there.

"He's a conservative minimalist," said Jonathan Adler, a law professor at Case Western Reserve University and a prominent conservative legal expert.

Adler argues that Roberts is guided by an "anti-disruption principle" -- that he would prefer not to throw people off of existing programs, or overturn precedents, or strike down entire federal laws, when he can avoid it.

That explanation fits with many of Roberts' controversial rulings -- finding a way to uphold the ACA as a tax, stopping the Trump administration from ending DACA (at least temporarily). He takes advantage of workarounds that allow the court to excise one part of a statute without throwing out the whole thing.



Posted by at July 10, 2020 8:20 AM

  

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