Archive for April 3rd, 2012

April 3, 2012

The Daily Scoop: Why Conservatives Shouldn’t Gloat Yet

Conservative intellectuals are feeling giddy. Last week they feasted on the veritable mauling of Solicitor General Donald Verrilli by the Supreme Court’s five conservative justices. (In truth, Verrilli was only questioned by four of the conservatives—Justice Clarence Thomas, true to form, didn’t speak. But we know where his vote lies.) I tell the students in my class at the City College of New York that “five” is the most powerful number in the nation. For as we have seen, five votes on the Supreme Court can pick a president—voters notwithstanding—and five votes could redefine our understanding of Congress’ power under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution—precedents notwithstanding. So maybe the conservative celebration is merited. Yet it is also plausible that an element of hubris has overtaken the right.

Because, in this moment of conservative glee, there are a few things—indisputable facts—that should not be forgotten,

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