NEWS BLOG (WSAU) Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is under attack before Thursday's health care ruling. It will be worse after.
Columnist E.J. Dionne calls for his resignation:
The Washington Post editorial board says he puts the Court's reputation in peril:
His crime? In his dissent in the Arizona illegal immigration case, he pointedly criticized the Obama Administration's just-announced policy of no longer deporting undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children.
He's politicking from the bench!
He's pre-judging a case that may yet come before the court!
He revealed himself as a conservative partisan!
People who are offering those opinions either didn't read Scalia's words (a possibility with the fast-and-loose national press), or are being intentionally dishonest.
Scalia's criticism of the White House executive order for illegals relates directly to the Arizona case. It wasn't some random political commentary on the news-of-the-day from Washington. One of the reasons he's the target of such hostility is that he's won the argument. Scalia's point is simple. Arizona didn't write its restrictive immigration law to step on Federal toes; it did so because federal law isn't being enforced. Last week's announcement from the Obama Administration illustrates the point, and Scalia calls them on it. Here is yet another area of federal law that the executive branch says it simply will not follow.
And Scalia dismantles the Obama Administration's explanation why. The White House says federal resources are scarce. (Not true – the Federal government has unlimited resources. It prints money at-will and freely runs up debt that will never be repaid. But that's not today's argument.) The new policy is not to use finite immigration-enforcement resources deporting non-violent, high-school-diploma-earning, non-criminal illegals who are under the age of 30. That policy goes on to say those who fit the criteria can get work permits and stay in the U.S for additional two-year renewable intervals.
Scalia says this is disingenuous, and it is. While the feds don't have enough resources for deportation, they're about to find the resources to set up a new bureaucracy. The undocumented who fit the criteria have to apply, have to be verified, and have to go through the process again in two years. For that, which is merely an executive order and has no underpinning of law, time and money will be spent. As for our actual laws about who can and can't be in the country, well, the cupboard is bare for that.
There are times when someone faces personal attacks because they're right. That's what's happening here.