Urbin Report

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

This should be no surprise to anyone who pays attention

From the Cato Institute:

The Heller dissent presents the remarkable spectacle of four liberal Supreme Court justices tying themselves into an intellectual knot to narrow the protections the Bill of Rights provides.

Or perhaps it's not as remarkable as we've been led to think. Consider the Court's First Amendment decisions. Contrary to popular belief, conservative justices are about as likely to vote in favor of individuals bringing First Amendment challenges to government regulations as are the liberals. Indeed, the justice most likely to vote to uphold a First Amendment claim is the "conservative" Justice Anthony Kennedy. The least likely is the "liberal" Justice Stephen Breyer. Consistent with general conservative/liberal patterns in commercial speech cases, Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia have voted to invalidate restrictions on advertising more than 75 percent of the time. Justices Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, meanwhile, have voted to uphold such restrictions in most cases.

David E. Bernstein is a professor at the George Mason University School of Law, an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, and the author of You Can't Say That!
More by David E. Bernstein

Conservative justices also typically vote to limit the government's ability to regulate election-related speech, while liberal justices are willing to uphold virtually any regulation in the name of "campaign finance reform."
...
In the infamous Kelo v. New London, the Court's liberal justices, joined by Justice Kennedy, held that the government may take an individual's property and turn it over to a private party for commercial use. The four conservative dissenters argued that such actions violate the Fifth Amendment's requirement that government takings be for "public use."
...
In the infamous Kelo v. New London, the Court's liberal justices, joined by Justice Kennedy, held that the government may take an individual's property and turn it over to a private party for commercial use. The four conservative dissenters argued that such actions violate the Fifth Amendment's requirement that government takings be for "public use."


Let us review the facts: Conservatives are generally for individual rights, and giving the individual to power to improve their own situation.
Liberals are not for the individual, but are for taking rights away from "the People" and giving more power to the government.