Travel ban, church-state case await action by Supreme Court

The court even avoided a sharp ideological split in its decision on Monday on how to handle Trump's contentious order banning people from six Muslim majority countries from entering the United States. It's an important case that will define the limits of presidential power at a time when many Americans are anxious about just that.

She flung the inflammatory rhetoric on MSNBC Monday in response to Supreme Court rulings being handed down. He turns 81 in a month, after 29 years on the Supreme Court.

But at the age of 80, the speculation will continue until he finally goes.

We have no clue how Kennedy would rule, to his credit.

So if Kennedy is inclined to retire, it is hard to begrudge him that choice. That's silly. That should've be corrected and I think the Supreme Court should have done that.

In any event, Justice Gorsuch took his seat on the bench in April, and his initial opinions showcase his promised readable style and principled textualist approach to statutory interpretation.

So to review, Trump would again have his pick in terms of the nominee.

There will be debate and Democrats will probably try to mount a filibuster to block the confirmation vote.

Democratic Rep. Mazie Hirono decried what she saw as judicial "extremism" from three conservative Supreme Court justices and called them three of the "horsemen of the apocalypse". We can not now know whether the votes to grant came - in whole or in part - from the liberal justices, but it seems unlikely that action on the petition would be delayed for months if the liberals had already furnished the necessary support.

"As the state court recognized, nothing in Obergefell indicates that a birth registration regime based on biology, one no doubt with many analogues across the country and throughout history, offends the Constitution", Gorsuch wrote, citing the court's landmark case that legalized same-sex marriage. Scalia voted on the conservative side of just about every issue that could be said to have one, and that was that. But as the high court ended its 2017 session Monday, three decisions in particular illustrated the importance of Kennedy's voice on the court, each relevant to California. Kennedy sided with conservatives on the Citizens United case which struck down election spending limits, and on issues of gun control and voting rights. Will he retire? He's been the crucial swing vote here for more than a decade. He alone has earned a reputation for siding with liberals on some decisions and conservatives on others. It was precisely that moderate-ness that made Kennedy valuable to both wings of the Court.

Consider what his departure means for the little Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colo.

Also a year ago, in Whole Women's Health v. Hellerstedt, he voted to strike down a Texas law imposing restrictions on access to abortion, only the second time he has done that since joining the court in February 1988.

Today, the Court granted certiorari in the much-anticipated Masterpiece Cakeshop vs. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.

When the court also declined to hear what would have been a major gun rights case on whether the constitutional right to keep firearms for self-defense extends outside the home, only two of the nine justices dissented. While the precise contours of Gorsuch's opinions are uncertain, and he could surprise in criminal cases, there's little doubt that, like Scalia, conservatives will be able to count on his vote.

"No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family". Now that Kennedy may step down at some point during the Trump administration, those same networks are suddenly eager for political "war". It appears Gorsuch is eager to strike down nearly any law that limits the right "to keep and bear arms" in any way.

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