RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment

Barnes writes: "Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, the intellectual cornerstone of the court’s modern conservative wing, whose elegant and acidic opinions inspired a movement of legal thinkers and ignited liberal critics, died Feb. 13 on a ranch near Marfa, Tex. He was 79."

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia speaks at the Economics Club of New York on Feb. 8.  (Photo: Peter Foley/European Pressphoto Agency)
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia speaks at the Economics Club of New York on Feb. 8. (Photo: Peter Foley/European Pressphoto Agency)

ALSO SEE: Scalia’s Death Plunges Court, National Politics Into Turmoil

Justice Antonin Scalia Has Died

By Robert Barnes, Washington Post

13 February 16


upreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, the intellectual cornerstone of the court’s modern conservative wing, whose elegant and acidic opinions inspired a movement of legal thinkers and ignited liberal critics, died Feb. 13 on a ranch near Marfa, Tex. He was 79.

The cause of death was not immediately known.

In a statement Saturday, Chief Justice John G. Roberts said: “On behalf of the Court and retired Justices, I am saddened to report that our colleague Justice Antonin Scalia has passed away. He was an extraordinary individual and jurist, admired and treasured by his colleagues. His passing is a great loss to the Court and the country he so loyally served. We extend our deepest condolences to his wife Maureen and his family.”

In the first official notice of Justice Scalia’s death, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said: “Justice Antonin Scalia was a man of God, a patriot, and an unwavering defender of the written Constitution and the Rule of Law. His fierce loyalty to the Constitution set an unmatched example, not just for judges and lawyers, but for all Americans. We mourn his passing, and we pray that his successor on the Supreme Court will take his place as a champion for the written Constitution and the Rule of Law.”

Justice Scalia, the first Italian American to serve on the court, was nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1986 and quickly became the kind of champion to the conservative legal world that his benefactor was in the political realm.

An outspoken opponent of abortion, affirmative action and what he termed the “so-called homosexual agenda,” Justice Scalia’s intellectual rigor, flamboyant style and eagerness to debate his detractors energized conservative law students, professors and intellectuals who felt outnumbered by liberals in their chosen professions.

“He has by the force and clarity of his opinions become a defining figure in American constitutional law,” Northwestern University law professor Steven Calabresi said at a Federalist Society dinner honoring Justice Scalia at the 20-year mark of his service on the Supreme Court. He took his seat Sept. 26, 1986.

Justice Scalia was the most prominent advocate of a manner of constitutional interpretation called “originalism,” the idea that judges should look to the meaning of the words of the Constitution at the time they were written.

He mocked the notion of a “living” Constitution, one that evolved with changing times, as simply an excuse for judges to impose their own ideological views.

Critics countered that the same could be said for originalism — and that the legal conclusions Justice Scalia said were dictated by that approach meshed neatly with the justice’s views on the death penalty, gay rights and abortion.

It is hard to overstate Justice Scalia’s impact on the modern court. Upon his arrival, staid oral arguments before the justices became jousting matches, with Justice Scalia aggressively questioning counsel with whom he disagreed, challenging his colleagues and often dominating the sessions.

He asked so many questions in his first sitting as a justice that Justice Lewis F. Powell whispered to Justice Thurgood Marshall: “Do you think he knows the rest of us are here?”

Justice Scalia was just as ready for combat outside the court. He relished debating his critics at law schools and in public appearances, although he sometimes displayed a thin skin.

He tired of questions about his prominent role in the court’s 2000 decision in Bush v. Gore, which halted a recount of the presidential vote in Florida and effectively decided the presidency for Republican George W. Bush. His response to those who raised questions years later: “Get over it.”

Despite his impact on the legal world, Justice Scalia’s views were too far to the right for him to play the pivotal roles on the court that his fellow Reagan nominees — Sandra Day O’Connor and Anthony M. Kennedy — eventually assumed.

Justice Scalia was far better known for fiery dissents than landmark majority opinions. One exception was the court’s groundbreaking 2008 decision in District of Columbia v. Heller.

An avid hunter and a member of his high school rifle team, Justice Scalia wrote the court’s 5-to-4 ruling that held for the first time that the Second Amendment afforded a right to gun ownership unrelated to military service.

“His views on textualism and originalism, his views on the role of judges in our society, on the practice of judging, have really transformed the terms of legal debate in this country,” Elena Kagan said about Justice Scalia when she was dean of Harvard Law School, alma mater to both. “He is the justice who has had the most important impact over the years on how we think and talk about law.”

After Kagan was nominated to the court by President Barack Obama, she and Justice Scalia became friends and hunting buddies — despite their distinct ideological differences and the fact that Kagan had never shot a gun. They went to Wyoming together in 2012 in hopes of Kagan bagging a big-game trophy like the elk, nicknamed Leroy, whose mounted head dominated Justice Scalia’s Supreme Court chambers.

But she shot only a white-tailed deer, which Justice Scalia later laughingly said “she could have done in my driveway” at his suburban Virginia home.

‘You’re not everybody else’

Antonin Gregory Scalia — “Nino” to family, friends and colleagues — was born in Trenton, N.J., on March 11, 1936, and grew up in the New York City borough of Queens. His father, Salvatore, came through Ellis Island at 17; he learned English and became a professor of romance languages at Brooklyn College.

Justice Scalia’s mother, the former Catherine Panaro, was a second-generation Italian American and an elementary school teacher. Not only was Nino their only child, he was the only child of his generation on either side of the family.

The whole extended clan doted on him, biographer Joan Biskupic reported in her biography “American Original,” and expected achievement. “You’re not everybody else,” Catherine would say, according to Biskupic. “Your family has standards, and it doesn’t matter what the standards of [others] are.”

In 1953, he graduated first in his class at St. Francis Xavier, a military prep school in Manhattan, and won a naval ROTC scholarship but was turned down by his first choice of college, Princeton.

A devout Catholic, he attended his second choice, Georgetown University, where he was the valedictorian of the class of 1957. In his graduation speech, he exhorted his fellow students: “If we will not be leaders of a real, a true, a Catholic intellectual life, no one will!”

Justice Scalia then entered Harvard Law School, where he was editor of the law review and graduated magna cum laude in 1960. That same year, he married Maureen McCarthy, a Radcliffe student he’d met on a blind date.

She, too, came from a small family, but they made up for it, with five sons and four daughters and literally dozens of grandchildren.

“We didn’t set out to have nine children,” Justice Scalia told Lesley Stahl on the CBS show “60 Minutes.” “We’re just old-fashioned Catholics, playing what used to be known as ‘Vatican Roulette.’?”

He added that the other four sons were relieved when their brother Paul decided to “take one for the team” and become a priest.

The Scalias moved around. After traveling across Europe for a year while he was a Harvard Sheldon Fellow, the newlyweds moved to Cleveland, where Justice Scalia joined the Jones Day firm in 1961.

On the cusp of becoming partner, he left private practice in 1967 to become a law professor at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

In 1971, he became general counsel to the new Office of Telecommunications Policy in the Nixon administration; the agency spurred development of the nascent cable industry. From 1972 to 1974, he was chairman of the Administrative Conference of the United States, followed by three years as assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel.

After Jimmy Carter, a Democrat, won election to the White House, Justice Scalia returned to academia as a professor at the University of Chicago law school.

Then Reagan came into office in 1981 and the next year nominated Justice Scalia to the influential U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. His name quickly appeared on short lists of potential Supreme Court nominees.

Reagan in 1981 made good on a campaign promise to appoint the court’s first woman with his choice of O’Connor, then an Arizona state judge and former legislator. His next chance to leave an imprint came five years later, when Chief Justice Warren Burger announced that he was stepping down.

The president decided to elevate Justice William H. Rehnquist to the chief’s job, and Justice Scalia and fellow D.C. Circuit Judge Robert H. Bork became the finalists for the opening. Bork was the more experienced jurist and a conservative icon, but the 50-year-old Scalia was almost a decade younger and brought the added political benefit of being Italian American.

Justice Scalia got the nomination. After a testy Senate battle over Rehnquist’s elevation, Justice Scalia sailed through his confirmation hearings and was approved 98 to 0.

Future vice president Joseph R. Biden, then a Democratic senator from Delaware and a stalwart of the Judiciary Committee, later said that his vote for Justice Scalia was the one he most regretted — “because he was so effective.”

Textualism and originalism

Justice Scalia set out immediately to make his views known — and became exactly the justice conservatives had hoped for.

He had been an influential early supporter of the Federalist Society, a group that political scientist Steven Teles called “the most vigorous, durable and well-ordered organization to emerge from [the] rethinking of modern conservatism’s political strategy.”

Reliance on legislative history as a key element of interpreting statutes was once commonplace. But Justice Scalia railed against the practice, saying that only the words of the statutes matter — a view known as textualism. He likened judges’ use of secondary sources such as committee reports or statements made by members of Congress during floor debates to “looking over the faces of the crowd at a large cocktail party and picking out your friends.”

Even though most justices continued to think legislative history was valuable in interpreting statutes, lawyers arguing before the court learned that they would be upbraided by Justice Scalia for mentioning it. He refused to join opinions that cited legislative history, even in a footnote.

Similarly, Justice Scalia redefined and popularized originalism. His approach to understanding the Constitution focused not on the framers’ intent but on the meaning of the words to ordinary citizens in 1787. He rejected the notion that the framers wanted the Constitution to be a “living” document designed to accommodate changing circumstances and social values.

“The starting point, in any case, is the text of the document and what it meant to the society that adopted it,” Scalia said at his confirmation hearing. He added that this approach guarded “against the passions of the moment that may cause individual liberties to be disregarded.”

Liberals, he said, should like such an approach, because it constrained conservatives such as him from turning their personal opinions into public policy. To illustrate, he often said that the Constitution doesn’t provide a right for a woman to have an abortion, but it also does not forbid states from making the procedure legal and accessible.

He cited his vote on flag-burning — he agreed with the court’s majority that the guarantee of free speech allows the practice — as one instance when his allegiance to the Constitution outweighed his personal views. “If it was up to me, if I were king,” he said, “I would take scruffy, bearded, sandal-wearing idiots who burn the flag, and I would put them in jail.”

But he did not note many other examples of originalism dictating views that contradicted his personal beliefs.

Even when he wasn’t writing for the majority, his opinions provided an influential template for conservative lawyers and politicians. His writing style was certain and clever:

“Frequently an issue of this sort will come before the Court clad, so to speak, in sheep’s clothing,” Justice Scalia wrote in his lone dissent in Morrison v. Olson. “.?.?. But this wolf comes as a wolf.”

But he could also be acerbic and dismissive of his opponents.

“No justice in Supreme Court history has consistently written with the sarcasm of Justice Scalia,” Erwin Chemerinsky, now dean of the University of California at Irvine law school, wrote in a widely noted law review article.

“No doubt, this makes his opinions among the most entertaining to read. .?.?. But I think that this sends exactly the wrong message to law students and attorneys about what type of discourse is appropriate in a formal legal setting and how it is acceptable to speak to one another.”

New Yorker writer Margaret Talbot thought that Justice Scalia’s writing made him a rock star, especially among young conservatives. Of all the justices, she wrote, “Scalia is most likely to offer the jurisprudential equivalent of smashing a guitar onstage.”

Justice Scalia’s blunt critiques may have cost him in finding common ground with some of his colleagues. Students of the court believe that his sharp-tongued put-downs of O’Connor — he once said her reasoning in a case could “not be taken seriously” — affected their relationship.

He could also be a provocateur outside the courtroom. A reporter once asked him as he was leaving church if he caught flak for his Roman Catholic beliefs, and Justice Scalia responded by flicking his fingers under his chin, a Sicilian insult.

Unlike his colleagues, Justice Scalia eagerly discussed constitutional issues and his personal opinions in public. On several occasions, his out-of-court activities prompted critics to question his impartiality.

He once went duck hunting with Vice President Richard B. Cheney, who at the time was the subject of a lawsuit by the Sierra Club seeking the names of people who participated in the vice president’s energy task force. Scalia refused to recuse himself from the case, which the Supreme Court had agreed to hear.

In 2006, he spoke against giving alleged terrorists jury trials — right before the court was set to hear a case on detainee rights, prompting a group of retired generals and admirals to file a friend-of-the-court brief asking him to recuse himself from hearing the appeal filed by Osama bin Laden’s alleged driver, Salim Ahmed Hamdan.

He participated in that case but had to sit out one that challenged the use of the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. In remarks to a Knights of Columbus rally before the case arrived at the Supreme Court, he suggested that an appeals court had erred in agreeing with the challenger.

That said, Justice Scalia often played the role of charming rogue. In less-partisan times, he was a fixture at Georgetown parties; he loved opera and led carol-singing at the court’s annual Christmas parties. Every year when Boston University law professor Jay Wexler compiled the number of times the notation “laughter” appeared in transcripts of the court’s oral arguments, Justice Scalia was the leading instigator.

Nothing illustrated the dynamic so well as his close friendship with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, with whom he was in frequent disagreement. The two served together on the D.C. Circuit and respected each other’s intellect. Scalia and his wife, and Ginsburg and her husband, Martin, celebrated most New Year’s Eves together.

Ginsburg said no one made her laugh as much as Justice Scalia did. “I love him. But sometimes I’d like to strangle him,” she once said.

Outspoken about faith

Justice Scalia once wrote in a law review article that legal views are “inevitably affected by moral and theological perceptions.”

After donning his black robe, he would insist that his religious faith and personal views did not determine the outcome of cases because his textualist, originalist approach insulated him from bias. He believed that judges should defer to elected officials on matters of social policy.

But Justice Scalia’s faith was integral to his identity. He objected to Vatican II and drove out of his way to find churches that celebrated Mass in Latin.

He was the court’s most outspoken member on the subject of religion. He urged fellow intellectuals to proudly be “fools for Christ” and used an interview in 2013 to underscore his belief in the existence of the Devil, whose latest maneuver, he said, was “getting people not to believe in him or in God.”

Justice Scalia wanted to lower the wall of separation between church and state, endorsing school prayer, nativity displays on public property and public money for religious schools.

But he insisted that there was no such thing as a “Catholic justice,” and said his views were shaped by an understanding of the Constitution and a belief that a judge’s role is limited.

“Don’t paint me as anti-gay or antiabortion or anything else,” Justice Scalia said at an appearance in 2015. “All I’m doing on the Supreme Court is opining about who should decide: Is it a matter left to the people, or is it a matter of my responsibility as a justice of the Supreme Court?”

Justice Scalia narrowly read individual rights and disdained policies designed to remedy discrimination against women and minorities. He was the lone dissent in a case challenging the state-run Virginia Military Institute’s right to exclude female applicants.

Justice Scalia believed that discrimination should be judged on an individual basis rather than by treating minorities as an aggrieved group; in his view, policies meant to address discrimination against a group in effect discriminated against individuals. “I owe no man anything, nor he me, because of the blood that flows through our veins,” he wrote in a 1979 essay.

He was part of majorities that made it harder for workers to bring discrimination claims.

He and O’Connor clashed when the court said the University of Michigan Law School could consider race as part of a comprehensive review of an applicant because of the benefits a racially diverse class would bring.

In dissent, he wrote: “This is not, of course, an ‘educational benefit’ on which students will be graded on their Law School transcripts (Works and Plays Well with Others: B+) or tested by the bar examiners (Q: Describe in 500 words or less your cross-racial understanding.)”

Notable wins, losing battles

For much of the public, the perception of Justice Scalia was formed in the polarized court’s ruling in Bush v. Gore. Justice Scalia wrote for himself when the court issued an emergency stay to stop the vote-counting in Florida in the 2000 presidential election. “The counting of votes that are of questionable legality does in my view threaten irreparable harm to [Bush], and to the country, by casting a cloud upon what he claims to be the legitimacy of his election,” the justice wrote.

To Gore supporters, that sounded like an attempt not to find out which candidate got the most votes but to protect the integrity of Bush’s win. Moreover, the five-member majority based its ultimate ruling on an expansive reading of the equal protection clause, which in previous cases involving gays, blacks and women Justice Scalia had preferred to read narrowly. The case was also a departure from his reluctance to endorse federal intrusion in state and local affairs.

On gay rights, Justice Scalia fought a losing battle. He warned in his 2003 dissent in Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down a state sodomy law, that the court was paving the way for same-sex marriage. He was not any happier to see his prediction come true.

When the court ruled 5 to 4 in 2015 that the Constitution forbade state laws that prohibited same-sex marriage, Justice Scalia said the court had taken its most drastic step in overruling decisions made by the public.

“A system of government that makes the People subordinate to a committee of nine unelected lawyers does not deserve to be called a democracy,” he wrote in dissent.

His great triumph on the court came in writing the majority decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, the Second Amendment case.

Most lower courts had long interpreted a 1939 Supreme Court case, United States v. Miller, to mean that the Second Amendment guaranteed the right to bear arms only to members of state militias like the National Guard.

Justice Scalia’s opinion made it unmistakable that the Constitution requires more than that. The Second Amendment, he said, “surely elevates above all other interests the right of law-abiding, responsible citizens to use arms in defense of hearth and home.”

More than just a victory for gun rights, the case was significant for being fought on the originalist grounds that Justice Scalia had long championed. He wrote 64 pages on why the authors of the Second Amendment meant to imply an individual right; Justice John Paul Stevens countered with 46 pages of history arguing only for the militia right.

Another victory for Justice Scalia on the court might seem surprising for a conservative who was such a full-throated defender of the death penalty.

Crawford v. Washington marked a revolutionary change in criminal law. Writing for the majority in 2004, Justice Scalia spelled out a bright-line rule that said “testimonial” statements by unavailable witnesses couldn’t be used as evidence in court unless the defendant had a prior opportunity for cross examination. Previously such statements were admissible if deemed sufficiently reliable by a judge.

The decision was a great win for criminal defense lawyers and one in which the Supreme Court majority blurred its usual conservative-liberal dividing lines.

Near the end of his tenure on the court, as Justice Scalia was on the losing side in landmark decisions on issues such as gay rights, he condemned what he called “the practice of constitutional revision by an unelected committee of nine.”

In his dissent to the court’s 2015 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges recognizing a constitutional right for same-sex couples to marry, Justice Scalia summed up his objections.

“Hubris is sometimes defined as o’erweening pride; and pride, we know, goeth before a fall,” he wrote. “.?.?. With each decision of ours that takes from the People a question properly left to them — with each decision that is unabashedly based not on law, but on the ‘reasoned judgment’ of a bare majority of this Court — we move one step closer to being reminded of our impotence.” your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+109 # Crebbafrabitz 2016-02-13 19:19
I weep...not.
+73 # nogardflow 2016-02-14 00:11
I will never celebrate the death of another human being, and no, I do not know how my happy dance shoes got on my feet.
+31 # dickbd 2016-02-14 09:26
That's funny! I sort of feel the same way.

He was pretty much for everything I am against, but he sounds like an interesting human being. I liked Ruth Bader Ginsberg's comment.

Reagan sure managed to pack the court with influential conservative blockheads. It has always been interesting to me how intelligent people can be so wrong headed and anachronistic. Religion, I suppose, is one answer.
+2 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2016-02-14 11:13
Speaking of religion. Several years ago, while working for my bachelor of science degree, I took an elective course, titled. "Philosophy Of Man." Instructor: "Class assignment. Each of you need to investigate the root meaning of religion.Then, ask yourself if the idea of religion has changed based on its root meaning?"

My response, and I'm betting on a good memory as I'm now 75 years old. I "disassembled" the word. I did a lot of research checking here, checking there.

What I came up with. "RE" has a few meanings but essentially means to return to, come back to. "ligion" meant to me "goodness." Obviously, "return to goodness."

My conclusion: religion now has a very different "modern" meaning. Has the idea been corrupted? Each has to answer for themselves. I know what my answer is.
+5 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 15:44
You are right Eldon. Religion has NOTHING to do with goodness. It has everything to do with POWER and CONTROL.
+9 # JSRaleigh 2016-02-14 17:56
Quoting nogardflow:
I will never celebrate the death of another human being, and no, I do not know how my happy dance shoes got on my feet.

I'm not supposed to speak ill of the dead, but I'm having a hard time not leaping into the air, clicking my heels together & singing "Hey nonny nonny, I'm glad you're gone, you rascal you!"

Now, if only Clarence Thomas will take the hint.
+6 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:22
It's a shame his head can't be mounted next to all those animals he slew in the name of ego and ignorance.
+8 # dandevries 2016-02-14 22:10
Elegant opinions? Give us all a f'in break!
+75 # JJS 2016-02-13 19:26
Ding dong Scalia's dead.
+29 # Texas Aggie 2016-02-14 03:36
Better late than never, I suppose.
+19 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:22
No. It would have been better earlier. A marvelous candidate for post-natal abortion.
+18 # RMDC 2016-02-14 08:56
It is just painful to read through all of the mis-judgments this Scalia dude made. What is misguided asshole. Slowly but surely all of the Reagan team is joining him in hell. Maybe down there he can still make speeches from note cards passed to him by Nancy.
+6 # dickbd 2016-02-14 09:29
Well, it will be good to see the Reagan team go, but I don't want to consign anyone to everlasting punishment. That has to be one of the most damnable things about religion. No one deserves that. And it serves no purpose--escept vengeance, a staple of religion!
+2 # RMDC 2016-02-15 06:21
They are the ones who believe in hell. Not me. What a silly concept. It is just another instance of the really bad people trying to scare ordinary people into doing what the bad people want.

I really just want to see the remnants of the Reagan team go. I'm with them going into full retirement. Or in converting to common sense like Paul Craig Roberts. He's the role model for ex-Reagan appointees.
+2 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:18
I had to break that down to my sister. My text was Scalia died. Ding Dong.
+1 # JJS 2016-02-15 11:31
'And he's not only merely dead, he's really most sincerely dead.'
+81 # Billy Bob 2016-02-13 20:55
We need Sanders in the White House and FAST.
+59 # Billy Bob 2016-02-13 22:24
Seriously, what would happen if a liberal president nominated liberal candidates for the position?

Let's say Sanders is in the White House, and as the ONLY candidate that would actually stick it to Republicans by standing up for his convictions (as opposed to Clinton, who'd try to meet them "1/2 way"), he nominates liberals (they turn them down, and he nominates MORE liberals), what happens? Could we have 8 years of a Supreme Court that just gets smaller and smaller? What could force the Republicans' hands on this?

We CAN NOT allow a Republican in the White House. If Sanders loses the nomination (God forbid), I REFUSE to take some stupid oath to throw the entire nation under the bus and punish it by allowing a psychotic Republican to choose about 4 Supreme Court justices.
+17 # Crebbafrabitz 2016-02-14 00:19
In case you haven't noticed, Killery is the first cousin to a "psychotic Republican". She's a psychotic right wing Democrat. A vote for her is putting party over principles and I'm a proud Democratic Socialist Independent so no nose-holding vote for Clinton from me.

Besides, Bernie is going to CONTINUE to make history in this campaign and the BIGGEST history-maker will be the unprecedented LANDSLIDE VICTORIES in the primaries AND the general! (Granted, that statement is based a lot on my love for the man; however, over on the left side of the brain, the facts and numbers seem to be with him also.)
+10 # backwards_cinderella 2016-02-14 03:59
She's a DINO.
-2 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 15:53
Crebbafrabitz your post is a patchwork of all the other anti-Hillary posts on this site. Which tells me that you're a typical repug who can't put their own thoughts together.
What gave you away, you ask? The fact that you suggested that should Bernie not win, you wouldn't vote for Hillary. Which is exactly what the repugs want ALL democrats to do and what true democrats would never do because to allow the repugs to take over the WH would give them a chance to finish the job that Bush/Cheney started.
+22 # Old4Poor 2016-02-14 01:15
Right on. I have been arguing with my fellow Sanders enthusiasts for months that if Hillary is the nominee we must support and vote for her, because of THE SUPREME COURT!
+18 # JJS 2016-02-14 07:39
And a Democratic (or Democratic Socialist) controlled Senate. As well, more Dems (or DemS) in the House would help, too.
Vote the ticket not just the president!
-3 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 15:46
Oh boy and here we go with the anti-Hillary comments. I was wondering how long it would take you people to turn this around to Hillary.
+46 # Pikewich 2016-02-13 20:58
1 down, 3-4 to go for a supreme court worthy of the name.
-83 # egbegb 2016-02-14 01:25
I suspect that none of you folks has ever read and especially none of you folks understands it or the Rule of Law. That's OK with me, I will be dead when you destroy the American experiment and you grandkids suffer big time. Progressive policies and a "living constitution" are a recipe for a rotting society.
+23 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:30
Your "rule of law" guy was probably on a hunting outing with good ole boys who had cases in front of the court this spring. he was a turd that had no respect for precedent and the court might be slightly better with him gone. Obama will put a barely liberal or Bush type on the court because "I can't get anything else through...poor me!"
+10 # reiverpacific 2016-02-14 10:39
Quoting egbegb:
I suspect that none of you folks has ever read and especially none of you folks understands it or the Rule of Law. That's OK with me, I will be dead when you destroy the American experiment and you grandkids suffer big time. Progressive policies and a "living constitution" are a recipe for a rotting society.

Nobody asked you to post here Bubba; your reactionary ilk has fucked up this country, which used to be a great place to work, especially if creative and entrepreneurial ly inclined, for everybody but since Reagan it has declined into a corporate/ military Oligarchy -and you know the generally accepted moniker for THAT is.
If there is a Hell, you may well end up meeting Reagan and many others like this member of Opus Dei when its your time.
+7 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:08
Then please explain, egbegb, why is it that every recession and depression occurred with a repug president in the WH? If that isn't an attempt at destroying the American experiment, then what is?
+3 # Working Class 2016-02-14 23:16
The dinosaurs didn't evolve either egbegb. Have you seen one lately? The law must change with the times.
+2 # bmiluski 2016-02-16 12:48
The rue of law, which you repugs continually disregard, says that a president has a 4 YEAR TERM not 3 years. But why should rules bother repugs like you?
+95 # CL38 2016-02-13 21:39
As a liberal progressive, I'm not glad he died, but I do celebrate that he no longer serves on the Supreme Court.
+35 # Glen 2016-02-14 06:31
The supreme court was not meant to be political or justices adhering to a particular party. The court was meant to be an independent entity ruling on issues and staying above petty influences, or major influence.

Having said that, I must say I have an attorney friend who despises Scalia et al. for not adhering to the ethics of the court, or having spouses who are involved in conflicts of interest. There is little dignity left in the court or the government.
+8 # newell 2016-02-14 11:28
My gage is did someone's life make the planet better. From my point of view he made it worse.......Bac k in the day, we celebrated when JE Hoover died. When someone decides to make their life public they also take on the possibility of criticism at their end and that their family will feel that as well. And at the time of a person's death is the only defining evaluation we have, but hopefully not hateful.
+50 # reiverpacific 2016-02-13 22:54
Clarence Thomas must be gobsmacked -he'll have to find his own voice for a change; or maybe he'll follow suit as one incapable of utterance. That would be a real bonus; not wishing him to die but to return into the corrupt shadows from whence he was sprung on us (Thank you again Saint Raygun).
I wonder if Scalia's membership in Opus Dei will give him an easier trip to whichever hereafter he hoped for.
None of us gets outa here alive -at least in body.

"For in and out, above, about, below,
'Tis nothing but a Magic Shadow-show,
Play'd in a Box, whose Candle is the Sun,
'Round which we shadow Figures come and go."

"And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."
+67 # Auteur47 2016-02-13 23:12
Judge Thomas must now find another ventriloquist.
+22 # Billy Bob 2016-02-14 00:27
Yeah, but it won't be the same. He wore a perfect ass-groove on Scalia's lap. You don't get an ass-groove like that over night. There aren't too many potential candidates for the job with the perfect combination of knees that could handle the weight of Thomas' ass, and a hand small enough to fit inside of it to manipulate the controls that allow Thomas to vote.

I suspect the most likely scenario, is that the tormented ghost of Scalia will now use Thomas as a medium. Since Thomas, himself, was not born with the gift of human speech, what eventually comes out will be "in tongues".

I fully anticipate Thomas to be more actively engaged in the court (seemingly) and to, perhaps, even write a few public opinions, that could go something like this:
+12 # JJS 2016-02-14 07:44
Quoting Auteur47:
Judge Thomas must now find another ventriloquist.

If he had any "honor", Thomas would perform Seppuku, Hara Kari. Alternately, he could just resign. I would welcome that.
0 # Charles3000 2016-02-14 07:31
Charles Swinburn?
+1 # reiverpacific 2016-02-14 13:26
Quoting Charles3000:
Charles Swinburn?

If you're asking about my quote, it's from Shakespeare's "Macbeth".
+2 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:10
Wow, you're right reivepacific, what will that lame-brained Thomas do now?
+46 # Street Level 2016-02-13 22:56
People are about as sad when they heard that Andrew Breitbart had died.
+35 # Missrayraythegreat 2016-02-13 23:17
Cue the blaming of POTUS for his death in 3...2...
+2 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:21
Already being called a conspiracy, with no understanding that an actual conspiracy would have included Thomas.
0 # bmiluski 2016-02-16 12:57
You are so right pegasus4508..........
Noted conspiracy theorist Alex Jones broadcast an “emergency transmission” just after Scalia’s death, suggesting President Obama was behind the ranch-side slaying

“Obama is one vote away from being able to ban guns, open the borders and actually have the court engage in its agenda and now Scalia dies. I mean, this is hard core,” said Jones, who also claimed the president orchestrated conservative pundit Andrew Breitbart’s 2012 dead.

Jones said his “gut” told him Obama played a part in Scalia’s death, claiming the president is looking for “unprecedented power … during his last year in office.”
+57 # Auteur47 2016-02-13 23:22
There is a popular notion on the right that Obama should just pass on naming a nominee to replace Scalia. Ha! Dream on Republicans! Obama is still President and nowhere in the Constitution is it mentioned that this obligation to nominate is precluded during the lame duck period.
+33 # Old Uncle Dave 2016-02-13 23:38
Do the Republicans think Sanders or Clinton will nominate someone more to their liking?
+24 # Crebbafrabitz 2016-02-14 00:28
It will be with great interest from this camper to see who he names. It will be very telling as he nears the end of the "lame duck" period. A judicial legacy, as it were.
-1 # Ralph 2016-02-14 12:19
I will go out on a limb. It will be a PINO. Progressive in name only.
+1 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:14
Yeah, because that's what he's done in the past. Especially since he's named more women and liberal thinking people to the bench then any other president.
+23 # Nominae 2016-02-14 02:09
Quoting Auteur47:
There is a popular notion on the right that Obama should just pass on naming a nominee to replace Scalia. Ha! Dream on Republicans! Obama is still President and nowhere in the Constitution is it mentioned that this obligation to nominate is precluded during the lame duck period.

Just so he doesn't name one of his legal buddies from Goldman Sachs or JP Morgan Chase !
-7 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:24
He'll do just that. Thats the kind of "justice" that he has proven, for the past seven years, that he believes in.
+12 # rofo47 2016-02-14 07:56
Kagan and Sotomayor are Wall Streeters and bad appointments?
+2 # reiverpacific 2016-02-14 10:43
Quoting rofo47:
Kagan and Sotomayor are Wall Streeters and bad appointments?

Source please; that spurious contention needs some backup.
This ain't FOX fantasy news y'know.
+2 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:15
Please reivepacific... .rofo47 is a troll. Which means you'll NEVER get an answer from it.
0 # reiverpacific 2016-02-15 10:54
Quoting bmiluski:
Please reivepacific....rofo47 is a troll. Which means you'll NEVER get an answer from it.

Sorry, I'm not up on my "Troll-list" these days.
0 # bmiluski 2016-02-16 13:01
You know what reiverpacific.. ..I just re-read rofo47's post and I think we got him all wrong. I think he was asking IF Kagan and Sotomayor are Wall Streeters and bad appointments?
Not that they were?
+38 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2016-02-13 23:32
Justice Scalia's time on this Earth as a Supreme Court judge reminds me of a joke I heard a speaker tell many years ago.

Speaker:"Everyone has an obligation to be a leader in something."
Man in audience:"Well, there would not be enough leadership positions available."
Speaker:"Oh, yes there are. You could be a leader in mistakes."
Man in audience:"Well, why would I want to do that?"
Speaker:"your life would not be a complete failure. You could always serve as a bad example for the rest of us."

Sorry to say, all to often. based on his decisions, Scalia was a leader in mistakes. Mistakes he was loved for by the Republicans.

A little humor. An Evangelical who said he spoke to Scalia after his "passing."

Evangelical to Scalia:"What's it like where you are?"

Scalia:"It is hotter than I expected."
+11 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:33
They weren't mistake...he unabashedly made decisions favoring people who gave his wife money or took them on nice vacations or gave him "speaking fees"...sound familiar?
+3 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2016-02-14 11:19
We were "mistaked" on.

Here in the U S, Democracy can be disappointing in so many ways. To remove a judge from office is considered (disrupting) to society. but, to keep a dishonorable judge in office is very (destructive.) We are finding that out the hard way.
+2 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:23
Sounds like Clarence no brain Thomas
+41 # Billy Bob 2016-02-13 23:34
I nominate Elizabeth Warren.
+9 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 02:04
There is nothing in the Constitution prohibiting anyone from any profession -- or no profession -- from serving as a Supreme Court Justice.

Considering Elizabeth Warren is close to completing her commitment to the US Senate, it will be ok to leave the Supreme Court running with only 8... and leave it to a Bernie Sanders/ coat-tail Congress to make the stronger case.

I want to know who a Bernie-Sanders nominee will be.

If Obama will do it, great.

However, can anyone really imagine Obama -- using even the back-drop of a Presidential-ye ar election season -- nominating someone like Elizabeth Warren, ... or William K. Black?

Why would Obama show aptitude now?

It would be nice, forcing Republicans to contend with dynamic communicators with the highest professional caliber, therefore helping with Democratic-Part y elections.

But no. Obama will find someone to appease Republicans, someone who will sail through the nomination process, at the expense of quality.

Obama nor Debbie Wasserman care anything about what is best for D-Party elections, such as more debates as better; such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for Supreme Court Justice.

I hope whatever process that produced Pope Francis is used for this next Justice.
# Guest 2016-02-14 02:30
This comment has been deleted by Administrator
+7 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 02:40
Would you prefer that Obama nominate himself?
+4 # Billy Bob 2016-02-14 07:13
nice2bgrea gave a thoughtful response and you didn't.
-1 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:21
"Why would Obama show aptitude now?"

Had nothing to do with thought but NICE2BGREA's attempt to smear a democratic president. If you read his/her posts you'd see the anti-democrat thread.
+1 # bmiluski 2016-02-14 16:18
So I suppose Kagen and Sotomayor were repugs?
+48 # Jayceecool 2016-02-13 23:35
Scalia, who liked to affect an air of superiority, was a moral Pygmy. I recall reading one of his comments related to his support of the death penalty. When he was informed that data now shows innocent people have been executed by this country, Scalia was unmoved.
+22 # Texas Aggie 2016-02-14 03:35
Indeed, as he stated on occasion as long as the legal procedures were followed, it didn't matter if an innocent person suffered. That there was something wrong with legal procedures if innocent people were convicted never seemed to enter his little mind.
+10 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:35
Scalia was a tragedy for Italian Americans!
+4 # Cassandra2012 2016-02-14 15:28
Quoting Texas Aggie:
Indeed, as he stated on occasion as long as the legal procedures were followed, it didn't matter if an innocent person suffered. That there was something wrong with legal procedures if innocent people were convicted never seemed to enter his little mind.

Remember, he was a tool for the medieval cult of Opus Dei.
+44 # Shades of gray matter 2016-02-13 23:37
Antonin wasted and abused his "God given" intellect in service to mean spirited BIGOTRY. He wasted his time on Earth putting small minded ideas, cruelty, and grand delusions into complex sentences (so to speak). Sick. Tragic, but more so for others than for him. ONLY a psycho shit head would deliberately lie to proclaim that our Founders meant "We, the transnational corporations." Key word: "meant." He claimed "People" actually meant humongous corporations, not "people." He NEVER took the Constitution literally. He ALWAYS tried to twist and warp it in service to psychotic cruelty.
+39 # m... 2016-02-13 23:39
'The Constitution is dead... The Constitution is set in stone... The Constitution is not an organism; it’s a legal text, for Pete’s sake... The Constitution does not evolve... The Constitution is not open to interpretation through the ages...'

Well..., now I guess we'll never find out where Mr. 'Constitutional Purist' found the words--
MONEY = SPEECH in the dead, set in stone, not open to interpretation Constitution.
+41 # Salus Populi 2016-02-13 23:50
Whatever prompted RSN to use the fascist-lite WaPo for their coverage of Scalia's long-overdue death? It's like choosing _Der Stürmer_ to obit Hitler after his bunker suicide.

One of the most corrupt, vicious, hypocritical, out of touch, and fascistic bastards ever to dominate the White Supremes on the SCOTUS has finally died. Do we really need a carefully "balanced" obit that reads in places -- a *lot* of places -- as hagiography? Why not republish the Nation's Feb. 2001 article by Vincent Bugliosi on the Gore v. Bush decision, largely brought about by Scalia -- whose son was working for Bush -- titled "None Dare Call It Treason"?
+20 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:32
Exactly what this piece was, a polite, apologetic, laudatory remembrance of a despicable vicious bastard. The same sort of vile garbage the NYT will write when Kissinger bites it.
0 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:37
Link? I'd love to!
0 # Salus Populi 2016-02-17 00:38

Happy to have helped.
+26 # torch and pitchfork 2016-02-14 00:06
My wife asked me, "I wonder how many angels are dancing on Scalia's pinhead"
+29 # Scott Galindez 2016-02-14 00:38
Obama should come out Monday and say that since the Republicans are saying they wont bring up any nominee I make to the court, I will take them at their word. Since they are in recess I will appoint Michael Ratner to serve on the court until a permanent nominee is ratified by the Senate...

Senate Republicans would accept almost anyone else and vote as fast as they could...Not to put Michael down, but he would scare the hell out the Republicans.
# Guest 2016-02-14 01:03
This comment has been deleted by Administrator
+14 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 02:34
Quoting NRESQ:
After National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning the possibility of a recess appointment to the SCOTUS is nigh impossible.


And after tonight's Repub debate, can anyone doubt what is in store for a candidate-Sanders?

There isn't really very much left for the right to throw at HRC. To the extent she's not as "pure" as Pope Sanders the First, at least she's electable.

The first rule of politics: GET ELECTED!

"nigh", huh.

You may not realize this, but you have a hint of drama-queen showing.

As for what's in store for any Republican in a national election -- ESPECIALLY SANDERS -- is a most deserved ass-kicking.

And Hillary can keep her Sorority/debate -squad politics -- you can have 'em.

Regarding "Pope Sanders", let's put it this way. Say defeatist assholes are right about Sanders -- who is #2 All-Time in Amendments passed by Congress; but we can skip past that #2 All-Time status of working with Congress -- and Sanders as President will meet an intransigent Congress and get nothing done.

I would rather have President Bernie Sanders' judgement on virtually any issue.

If it's ok with Mrs. Sanders, Hillary can pick out the China, I don't doubt that Hillary has better experience in dish-ware.

Also, if there is a first rule of anything, it ought be: Don't play leap-frog with a unicorn.

And one I usually follow, but not tonight, is: Never argue with an idiot because people may not be able to tell the difference.
+20 # Texas Aggie 2016-02-14 03:30
Considering that polls show Sanders beating each republican candidate by more than Clinton does, it's a bit difficult to take you seriously when you say he's unelectable.

The only way that Clinton would do better than Sanders is if the powers that be in the republican party realize that she is actually a republican and is a better choice than whoever the famous base finally pick. Then when corporate America that owns the tea party finally comes to their senses, they would throw their weight behind her.
+11 # m... 2016-02-14 01:17
I think he should appoint Bill Clinton... That would even raise dead Republicans from their graves.
-4 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:39
Clinton would vanish in a puff of brimstone.
+2 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:42
Clinton...that former republican president? I don't think so!
-3 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 01:32
Quoting Scott Galindez:
Obama should come out Monday and say that since the Republicans are saying they wont bring up any nominee I make to the court, I will take them at their word. Since they are in recess I will appoint Michael Ratner to serve on the court until a permanent nominee is ratified by the Senate...

Keep dreaming.

Obama is going to find a sailor.
+4 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 01:39
Why do people live in this fantasy where Obama does anything "really Great", of true grandure, or anything else but a pose, a nod, and a wink? and of course, a sneer for the principled left.
# Guest 2016-02-14 02:25
This comment has been deleted by Administrator
+5 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 03:07
Tantrum much, bitch?
+2 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 03:35
Quoting NRESQ:
[Obama] will be remembered as one of the greatest DEMOCRATIC presidents, and perhaps one of THE greatest presidents of all time.

Only by the delusional.
0 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:39
Wow! So you hate Obama, yet he has achieved an awful lot, regardless of your ignorance. And yes, he will be remembered for his accomplishments , in spite of all the republican obstruction. As for the 2 years that we had total control, far more bills were passed then anyone has ever given him, Nancy or Harry credit for. In fact, Nancy worked the house right up to a day or so before Christmas to make sure all the bills they could pass PASSED. I am sorry you are so bitter, but wake up with a Presdient Trump, Cruz, Rubio or Kasiach, - you will see what ugly really is. Next!
+9 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:44
You think the republicans, that hate Killary more than they hate planned parenthood, will pass anything for her unless it is right wing drivel? Delusional!
+4 # Charles3000 2016-02-14 15:00
The current Democratic party is NOT the party of FDR, Truman and Johnson. It has changed over the past few decades and Bernie is working to bring it back to its roots; a party of the people, not a party that "accommodates" wealth and power while failing the needs of the people.
+1 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:41
Yes indeed!
0 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:37
Obama would never appoint anyone remotely like Michael Ratner for anything. Obama has made a career of enjoying stomping on the "little people", at home and abroad, and stands to make a healthy fortune, like his former appointee Eric Holder, when he leaves office. Why hire anyone who goes against that age-old grain, and jeopardize his glittering future..
+4 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:39
Problem is the repubs would do this and when it turns around...the dems would let through whatever peice of crap the repubs put the while saying "We're better than them"...a load of are just like them! or you ARE them!
+10 # Old4Poor 2016-02-14 01:22
While I also do not want to rejoice at anyone's death, I have to admit that I let out a large WHOOP when I turned on the tv and saw the Breaking News.

Trying to think of someone so well loved by the public the GOP Senate could not turn her down, I came up with Oprah, and NO, you do not need to be a lawyer to be a Judge, including a Supreme.

Also hoping that all the falsely executed will be waiting to weigh Scalia's heart with a feather as he tries to enter the afterlife.
+2 # Charles3000 2016-02-14 15:03
I fully agree that a black woman is needed on the court. That would bring a true sense of balance to the court.
+2 # Old4Poor 2016-02-15 00:21
I mentioned that to my son and his instant answer was ANITA HILL !!

Not certain she would want to work with that sleaze Thomas, but what poetic justice that would be.
0 # JJS 2016-02-15 11:46
Michelle Obama?
0 # Cassandra2012 2016-02-15 13:38
Quoting Charles3000:
I fully agree that a black woman is needed on the court. That would bring a true sense of balance to the court.

Or an Asian woman, or ... Elizabeth Warren!!!
+5 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 01:31
I'ma keep a focus on Sanders' campaign.

No commente.
0 # nice2bgreat 2016-02-14 02:05
Well, ... one comment. ...

Well, ... no. I wait.
# Guest 2016-02-14 02:27
This comment has been deleted by Administrator
+6 # treespeaker 2016-02-14 02:53
NRESQ has a potty mouth and needs mental help.
+28 # Texas Aggie 2016-02-14 03:18
There is so much wrong with this article:

"the intellectual cornerstone"

There was nothing intellectual about anything he wrote. Instead the reasoning was sloppy and deliberately aimed at reaching a preconceived result. Indeed on occasion he argued against what he had previously said in order to get the desired result.

"elegant and acidic opinions inspired a movement of legal thinkers "

Again, there was nothing elegant about his opinions. They would never stand up in any kind of a debate where he didn't control the process.

"an unwavering defender of the written Constitution and the Rule of Law. His fierce loyalty to the Constitution set an unmatched example,"

He never had any intention of defending the Constitution as was shown on numerous occasions. Instead he inflicted the Constitution with his own prejudices contrary to what the people who actually wrote the Constitution clearly said it meant. He set himself up as a clairvoyant mind reader who knew what the authors were actually thinking despite what they wrote about why they wrote the way they did. The only thing true about this statement is that his example is unmatched, thank all that is holy.

"Justice Scalia’s intellectual rigor, "

He has no intellectual rigor. His reasoning was as fluid as water and depended on the results that he wanted in any particular occasion.
+23 # Texas Aggie 2016-02-14 03:22
That the man was not well educated became clearly obvious when they argued about the release of CO2 into the air and about laws forbidding the teaching of evolution. The questions he asked about CO2 were something that any eighth grade Earth Science student would have been able to answer. Was it too much for him to read the chapter on weather in an eighth grade Earth Science book the night before?

And his dissent in the cases about teaching evolution show that he had absolutely no idea of what evolution is. Reading the chapter on evolution in a good high school biology textbook was beyond his intellectual capabilities.
+5 # RLF 2016-02-14 07:45
He could read???
+9 # dquandle 2016-02-14 04:46
Yup. Unabashed post-mortem fascist flattery and eulogizing ass-kissery from the WP. The same vile drivel occurred by the tank-car full, when Margaret Thatcher kicked it.
+12 # bullslam 2016-02-14 04:21
I did not dare to hope!

As for the do-nothing GOP who became the party of NO during Obama's presidency; who even said NO to themselves; will the people of America, the 98%, allow another NO party -- Congress? Really? The emergence of The Bern combined with the vacancy once held by the Prince of Darkness, Scalia, might just be an indication that, as a nation, we are headed for the most left swinging culture we have yet seen. Don't forget that Scalia was the Koch Bros greatest ally; and now he is gone and they can no longer hide. Also, Now that the occupation of the public land in Malheur County is over, the Koch's lost the possibility of quietly acquiring that property and thus the XL Pipeline has fallen prey to another disaster. Ammon Bundy and his associates were to have handed over that property to the Kochs. Don't forget that his father is Clive Bundy who still owes a million bucks to we, the people for grazing his cattle on public land.

The Cosmic Pendulum is accelerating its swing to the Left. I wouldn't be at all surprised if Bernie were to win. And Congress too, were to swing from Right to Left. The GOP is now nothing but a bunch of Step'N Fetchits to the rich. And who care not a fig or a farthing to be known as liars, thugs, cheats and parasites.
+7 # futhark 2016-02-14 05:56
Quail hunting in Texas can be hazardous to one's health. Scalia should have remembered what happened to Harry Whittington (shot in the face by Dick Cheney on a Texas quail "hunt") back in February 2006.
+4 # angryspittle 2016-02-14 06:48
What? No more jiggery pokery?
+16 # Charles3000 2016-02-14 07:35
To me A. Scalia defined himself in Bush v Gore when he went totally political, breaking all of his own so called rules. I blame him for 9-11 and the chaos in the mid East created by Bush. That is what I see for Scalia's legacy.
+9 # geohorse 2016-02-14 08:31
Scalia was not intelligent. His ability to rationalize is well taught by a good Catholic education like all 7 of our family endured. Granted, some of it was really good when we got a teacher well versed in Science, American History and literature which were really tops. I doubt that most politician could have passed those tests we had on the Constitution especially the part about separation of church and state. The nuns really made sure we understood that was basic to a healthy democracy. Just don't question the religious part----they had all the answers which "sounded" right but fell flat when countered with a big of evidence and reason,
+11 # old codger 2016-02-14 08:31
So, THIS was the SOB responsible for Bush, the Iraqi and Afghanistan wars and the following mess the world is now in because of the neo con policies HE unleashed on the world !
Maybe there IS a Hell ! ?

He could try 'getting over' THAT !
0 # JJS 2016-02-15 11:55
Quoting old codger:
Maybe there IS a Hell ! ?

Maybe there is and Scalia created or, at least, added to it, right here on earth. Wish he could have taken it with him.
+13 # NAVYVET 2016-02-14 08:50
The Universalist part of my Unitarian Universalist church had a 19th century faction that believed in universal salvation of all souls, but ONLY after those who needed to have their souls scrubbed with divine lye soap -- or should that be anti-lie soap? -- underwent a long period in Purgatory, learning good manners, empathy, and plain old New England town meeting democracy. I would consider Scalia a candidate for about ten thousand years in Purgatory. The harm he has done here on earth is incalculable.
+3 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:43
Or perhaps, 1 year for every soul he has negatively impacted, and double time for those who died needlessly in wars.
+9 # Kootenay Coyote 2016-02-14 09:34
Incomplete news headline: should read, 'Justice Antonin Scalia has died & gone straight to Hell.'
+1 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:43
Hey, Can I use that?
-4 # Shades of gray matter 2016-02-14 10:46
Little Scottie G. is RSN's Boy in the Bubble. He must have something on Marc.
-2 # Shades of gray matter 2016-02-14 10:50
Nominate someone who will force them to make an Election year decision.
Personally, I'd go with Bill Maher.
0 # librarian1984 2016-02-14 11:15
Of COURSE Obama has the right to nominate a replacement, but McConnell and Cruz didn't even let AS's body cool before they politicized this, unilaterally deciding that Obama only gets 3 years of his second term.

If they block any nominee and let the court sit at 4-4, it only improves the chances of left-ish decisions and draws a jagged red picture of the GOP's continued irrelevance in governing. Even faced with their angry electorate's embrace of Trump McConnell can't see that his obstructionism is part of that anger.

In the coming election the GOP has 24 Senate seats up while the Dems have 10. Of the three Senate election cycle, this one is most advantageous to Dems and increases the chances that not only will the Democratic nominee win but that they might very well have a Democratic Judiciary Committee and Senate, and will then be able to get a more liberal nominee through.

If they wanted to be more reasonable (ha!) perhaps Obama could nominate someone amenable to both parties, someone who is deemed trustworthy by many, and someone who does not fit the Court's current narrow demographic, someone outside the judiciary and someone who could improve the diversity of the Court: Colin Powell.
+3 # Ralph 2016-02-14 12:38
Unfortunately for Colin, there's that UN yellow cake thing hanging over his pointy head. Might as well scrape the bottom of the barrel and go for Henry Kissinger.
0 # Cassandra2012 2016-02-14 15:37
Quoting librarian1984:
If they wanted to be more reasonable (ha!) perhaps Obama could nominate someone amenable to both parties, someone who is deemed trustworthy by many, and someone who does not fit the Court's current narrow demographic, someone outside the judiciary and someone who could improve the diversity of the Court: Colin Powell.

Ah,but then to be fair they would have to bring up all his classified emails on a private server!
+12 # ChrisCurrie 2016-02-14 11:23
If a list were made of the ten Americans who did the most damage to democracy in the United States in the past two centuries, Antonin Scalia would definitely be on that list!
+4 # RNLDaWy 2016-02-14 12:53
The Grand Capi Tute Tuti The Don .. one of three of them who belong to the Federalist Society of Republican 'Family' .. is gone ... Me thinks from high above .. that .. "Justice has been Served" ......
+6 # Charles3000 2016-02-14 15:09
Scalia's legacy is his stop count order in the 2000 election. he participated in the conspiracy started by Jeb! to "give" Florida to his brother. His order is blatantly political, not judicial or according to either law or precedent. He stopped the ballot count because the results would hurt Bush and he knew they would. He knew Bush lost Florida and Gore had won the presidency.
+3 # Cappucino 2016-02-14 15:18
God rest his soul wherever it needs to be. Only God can judge where Scalia belongs in the next world (although I could think of a number of suggestions if God needs any ideas.) This calls a number of thoughts to mind, including Romans 12:19. (Remember that one? "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord; vengeance belongs to God, and to him only; it is proper and peculiar to him."
And maybe Scalia believed in the devil because he did Satan's work.

Wow, I can't believe how religious this post turned out to be!! O.o.
+7 # pegasus4508 2016-02-14 15:26
I already asked God for forgiveness but I was stunned and over joyed to hear the news. While I would not "normally" cheer the passing of any human, I made an exception for Scalia. I am sure there are other Rethugs I will also make exception for as well. But one failing at a time.
My sister was appalled until I broke down how much damage this one man has inflicted on the millions in this country, and this week around that planet with the vote to hold off the new EPA regulations. When you fuck with mother earth...
+4 # Archie1954 2016-02-14 16:59
He had his day and now he is gone! The nation's leaders must immediately plan for his replacement. The Supreme Court must always be at full roster.
+1 # Jim Rocket 2016-02-15 13:22
When I first heard about constitutional originalism or whatever you call it, I was baffled because it seemed so foolish on its face. If that were the case Clarence Thomas would be wearing white gloves and serving drinks at the Supreme Court and there sure wouldn't be any women sitting there. Then I visited Washington and the Jefferson Memorial. There is on the wall a quote, literally carved in stone, that boils down to "originalism is ridiculous".

"but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind... We might as well require a man to wear still the coat that fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors."

Its not that far a walk from the Supreme Court. Clearly Scalia never bothered to take a look. He was really just a slimy weasel with a gift for the gab.

THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.