The US Supreme Court begins its new term tomorrow with expectations of major decisions likely to be issued on the Obama Health Care Plan, illegal immigration laws, gay rights and gay marriage, and affirmative action, among other cases.
Rarely has a term opened with such potential major impact on the future of many hot button issues, expected to occur by June of 2012 at the latest!
What seems more likely than anything else is that Justice Anthony Kennedy, appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1988, and with a reputation as a “swing vote” on the evenly divided Court, will be the decisive fifth vote on many cases!
To imagine that one man should have such great influence, more than the other eight, including the Chief Justice John Roberts, is an indication of how tenuous constitutional law is in the age of a Court dominated until recently by conservative appointments of Reagan and both Presidents Bush.
As always, the Court, while seemingly trying to avoid politics, in actual fact plays politics, and will have a decisive role in what happens in the Presidential Election of 2012.
And what many forget is that IF a Republican President is elected in 2012, the Court will be turned more hard Right than it is right now, and that will have a destructive, deleterious effect on constitutional law for at least a generation!
It is the most important impact of the Presidential election, something many ill informed voters do not recognize, but which has a long range effect on their lives!
Progressives will be on tenterhooks wondering if Justice Kennedy will side with the left side of the Court, or the right side of the Court. For the advancement of America, let’s hope he swings to the left on these important issues mentioned above!