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Judiciary

Will Ruth Bader Ginsburg retire before 2020?

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Politicians and journalists have been speculating about if and when Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will retire for a decade now. The 85-year-old leftist judge fell at her office and fractured three ribs yesterday. She was admitted to the hospital today after initially going home first.

Before the fall, she had no intentions of retiring before 2020. Her clerks are slated to stay on until then. This latest in a long series of health concerns may have changed the calculus, but I doubt it. She’s the Supreme Court’s “Energizer Bunny.” She just keeps going and going and…

President Trump has nominated two Supreme Court Justices so far. With a solid majority in the Senate, Republicans are hopeful for one or more to retire soon. Left-leaning Justice Stephen Breyer is 80 and originalist Justice Clarence Thomas is 70. The other six Justices are all in their 50’s or 60’s.

Though Republicans will have control of the White House and Senate until at least inauguration day, 2021, their legitimate time frame to nominate a confirm a Justice is about 14 months. President Obama nominated Merrick Garland in March, 2016. At that time, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell declined to consider the nomination because it was a Presidential election year. Democrats had previously made similar claims that proximity to a change in power was grounds to delay confirmation until after the election.

If a spot opens any time after March, 2020, it would be political suicide for the GOP to confirm one of President Trump’s nominees after denying President Obama’s.

Nobody knows if she’ll retire in the next 14 months but her. I wouldn’t bet on it. She’s spent her entire life contradicting conventional wisdom. As partisan as she is, it’s unlikely she’d willingly leave the bench until a Democrat is in the White House.

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Judiciary

Why Neil Gorsuch stood alone as the only conservative perspective on the Yakama Tribe Supreme Court case

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Why Neil Gorsuch stood alone as the only conservative perspective on the Yakama Tribe Supreme Court

The judiciary is supposed to have one guide when forming fresh perspectives: the Constitution. As they examine the constitutionality of laws and other government actions, they often refer to previous rulings as precedent while looking for similar rulings as justification for leaning one way or another, but at the end of the day it’s the Constitution alone that is supposed to guide their judgments. That’s why we should look for judges who have originalist perspectives, not necessarily conservative ones (though, let’s be honest, the vast majority of originalist perspectives will align with a conservative perspective).

Part of conservatism is conserving the original intent of a law, or in the case in question, a treaty. The Yakama Tribe signed a treaty with the United States government that gave them control of a huge amount of tribal land in Washington state. Part of the exchange included the ability for Yakama traders to use U.S. highways for free.

Washington charges per gallon for fuel trucked in from out of state. One Yakama company claimed the 1855 treaty meant they were not to be charged this tax. The decision in the Supreme Court went mostly along expected political leanings with the “conservative” Justices wanting to charge the tax and the “leftist” Justices siding with the Takama Tribe. The tiebreaker turned out to be Neil Gorsuch, who went to the “leftist” side but with the only conservative reasoning to drive a vote.

The dissent claimed the treaty allowed for free passage on highways just as any American citizen can travel, but that the taxes set by Washington must still be paid. Only Gorsuch recognized that the original intent of the treaty was to grant the tribe free passage, as in free of charge regardless of what the U.S., state, or local governments wanted to charge. This is the right perspective. It’s the conservative perspective.

Should the other Justices who voted like Gorsuch get kudos as well? Probably not. I haven’t read their statements, but it’s safe to assume they ruled based on the party politics of supporting Native American rights whether they’re justifiable or not. Gorsuch ruled based on a proper interpretation of the treaty.

Conservatism and originalism go hand-in-hand when judges take the politics out of what they do. It’s hard. I’m not a judge so I shouldn’t… judge. But this seems to be a case where party politics played too much of a role. Gorsuch was right.

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Economy

Why everyone, even abortion activists, should be happy Ohio court allowed them to defund Planned Parenthood

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Why everyone even pro-abortion activists should be happy court allowed Ohio to defund Planned Parent

The two opposing viewpoints when it comes to funding Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinics are based on whether or not our tax dollars should be used to pay for abortions on demand or not. Planned Parenthood supporters want access for everyone and government money helps achieve this. Pro-Life activists want abortions limited or removed altogether, making funding of abortion clinics antithetical to their cause.

This is why a ruling in Ohio is getting so much attention.

But this isn’t really about pro-abortion versus pro-life. It really isn’t even about whether or not Planned Parenthood should be funded by taxpayers. This portion of the debate is about whether or not a state legislature has the power to decide how the people’s money is spent. For a court, any court, to claim that doing so is unconstitutional should send shivers down everyone’s spine, even those who support funding Planned Parenthood. When the courts decide who gets taxpayer funding, the power of the people is lost.

One of the things that separates NOQ Report from other conservative news outlets is our willingness to go to the heart of a matter. On the surface, this seems like a fight over funding, but the real issue here that everyone seems to be ignoring is the removal of our rights when an overpowered court continues to neuter our elected officials. This is why we request our readers help keep us 100% crowdfunded. We need support to keep these messages flowing.

Let’s fight this battle with our votes. Let’s fight it in state capitals. Even those who oppose defunding Planned Parenthood should be able to recognize that a judge declaring withdrawal of funding unconstitutional is a dangerous precedent. They wouldn’t be so happy about it if a different judge said it was illegal to fund Planned Parenthood. If that were the case, even pro-life conservatives should be screaming about overreach.

Judicial activism is rampant in America. It’s happening on both sides, though the left seems to be much more willing to contort the Constitution to fit their political ideology.

The debate over funding should be fought in the legislature. When the courts step in and declare a legislature does not have the right to fund or defund an entity, it’s clear judicial overreach. Neither side of the debate should want this.

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Guns and Crime

Gun Confiscation SWATing: Shooting down due process

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Gun Confiscation SWATing Shooting down due process

A new video from the Firearms Policy Coalition highlights the dangers to Liberty and due process posed by so-called ‘Red Flag’ Laws.

Gun confiscation SWATing, Extreme risk protective orders or so-call ‘Red Flag’ Laws are all the rage of the Liberty grabber Left and RINO’s these days. It’s bad enough that these unnecessary and unconstitutional violations of everyone’s due process rights are being ‘Rahmed’ through on a state level. But both the US House and Senate have their own versions. The latter co-sponsored by Senator Marco ‘RINO’ Rubio (R-FL) with the Senate Judiciary Committee to hold hearings on March 26.

In a case of trying to solve a rare but emotionally charged problem, these will only serve to create an even bigger problem destroying several civil and human rights in the process. We’ve already established that this type of legislation is unnecessary since Involuntary Civil Commitment laws that protect due process rights are already on the books. Thus we have woefully unconstitutional gun confiscation coupled with and evisceration of due process rights. It’s enough to have any tyrant glow with pride.

The video presented here while being about a short-term victory for Liberty and individual human rights raises some critically important issues with Gun confiscation SWATing. The video is about the rejection of a bill to expand the destruction of due process protections and government overreach in the ‘People’s Republic of California’. Specifically CA AB 61 Sponsored by: Asm. Phil Ting (D-19) to expand these outrages against Liberty.

Expanding who can call for a Gun confiscation SWATing

One ‘feature’ of this bill was to open up who can call for a Gun confiscation SWATing to co-workers, or other people in a school [2:30 min mark]. Of course, this expansion is exactly why these gun confiscation orders bereft of due process are so dangerous. Once the Liberty grabber Left has their foot in the door initiating this kind of gun confiscation. It’s just a matter of their opening up of who can call for these outrages to just about anyone. Simultaneously having someone’s property confiscated while ruining their life with this permanent mark on their record.

A representative from the California Civil Liberties advocacy group speaking in opposition to this bill made the point that while these are similar to easily obtained temporary restraining orders, these become a permanent mark on someone’s criminal record even if it is lifted.

Testimony from a representative from the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California [6:52 min mark] pointed out that while they are in favour of gun control, they oppose these measures that do not protect due process rights. The testimony was that this expansion of the people who can call for this kind of gun confiscation is very problematic. That the subject [or victims if you will] of these confiscations will not have been accused of a crime and won’t even know this one-sided ‘judicial’ process is taking place until the SWAT team breaks down their door a 4:00 AM.

The representative from the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California was also concerned as to how this ‘process’ would take place. Side note: it resulted in the death of an innocent man in Maryland.

She also pointed out that the ‘subject’ of the gun confiscation order might not even own a gun. This would bring on a whole new set of complications. What are the law enforcement officers supposed to do when even the most extensive search fails to turn up any firearms?

Still further on, she noted that the Law allowed someone to initiate one of these gun confiscation search orders on some they encountered 6 months before. Pointing out that the supposed urgency of the situation, allowing a 6 month window of opportunity is inconsistent with the alleged urgency of the issue.

Violating the Constitutional principle of Due Process

The host then reiterated the unconstitutional issue with these Gun confiscation SWATing orders. That not only is this about the taking of someone’s property and means of self-defence, but they also violate due process. That this isn’t just about the 2nd amendment.

He also pointed out that many of the Liberty grabber set consider anyone who owns a gun to be ‘dangerous’. Much like the idea of ‘hate speech’ the criteria for who should be subjected to a Gun confiscation SWATing is severely undefined while those who can call for this is being expanded to just about anyone.

The danger of ‘Settling a score’ with someone with a gun confiscation SWATing

There is the danger that someone could use these SWATing orders to ‘settle a score’ with someone – even if they don’t own a gun. In fact, it could be worse for the person in that situation since law enforcement would be incentivized to become more intense in searching for something that doesn’t exist. What is there to stop someone from using the threat of bringing one of these down on someone as a form of extortion?

Criminals are now being treated better than the innocent

A representative from another civil rights organisation, the Gun Owners of California brought up the point that criminals are now being treated better than the innocent. That those accused of a crime have better procedures that those who have done nothing wrong. In addition, he pointed out that it’s not the worst case scenario that someone would just lose their guns for 21 days [and have a permanent black mark on their record]. But having been deprived of the means of self-defense, they or their family members could be killed or severely injured as a result of one of these orders

Ignoring measures that work

Further on in the video when the measure has been voted down, the author invokes the protection of the children without considering measures that would actually accomplish the task such as getting rid of so-called ‘gun free’ zones, having some teachers armed and the hiring ex-military personnel to guard schools.

The Takeaway

While the Democratic majority thankfully voted down this outrage against Liberty, the issues raised are applicable to the push for these things at the Federal and state levels.

These are extremely dangerous infringements on not only the common sense human right of self-defense, but also due process and the right to privacy. They are not only extremely dangerous infringements, but unnecessary as well. We all will rue the day if we let this government overreach to solve a rare but emotional issue and deprive every one of their due process rights.

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