April 17, 2018

"The Supreme Court just handed the Trump administration a loss on immigration — and Gorsuch was the tiebreaking vote."

AP reports.
Conviction for a crime of violence makes deportation "a virtual certainty" for an immigrant, no matter how long he has lived in the United States, Justice Elena Kagan wrote in her opinion for the court.

The decision is a loss for President Donald Trump's administration, which has emphasized stricter enforcement of immigration law. In this case, President Barack Obama's administration took the same position in the Supreme Court in defense of the challenged provision.
What Gorsuch did seems like something Scalia would do.

ADDED: Here's the text of the opinion. Gorsuch has a concurring opinion. Let's read it. It's quite long, and no one joins him. He's concurring in part an concurring in the judgment. He begins:
Vague laws invite arbitrary power. Before the Revolu­tion, the crime of treason in English law was so capa­ciously construed that the mere expression of disfavored opinions could invite transportation or death. The founders cited the crown’s abuse of “pretended” crimes like this as one of their reasons for revolution. See Declaration of Independence ¶21. Today’s vague laws may not be as invidious, but they can invite the exercise of arbitrary power all the same—by leaving the people in the dark about what the law demands and allowing prosecutors and courts to make it up.

The law before us today is such a law. Before holding a lawful permanent resident alien like James Dimaya sub­ject to removal for having committed a crime, the Immi­gration and Nationality Act requires a judge to determine that the ordinary case of the alien’s crime of conviction involves a substantial risk that physical force may be used. But what does that mean? Just take the crime at issue in this case, California burglary, which applies to everyone from armed home intruders to door-to-door salesmen peddling shady products. How, on that vast spectrum, is anyone supposed to locate the ordinary case and say whether it includes a substantial risk of physical force? The truth is, no one knows. The law’s silence leaves judges to their intuitions and the people to their fate. In my  judgment, the Constitution demands more.
In this passage, Gorsuch raises Scalia to trump Thomas:
These early cases, admittedly, often spoke in terms of construing vague laws strictly rather than declaring them void. See, e.g., post, at 4–5 (opinion of THOMAS, J.); John- son, 576 U. S., at ___–___ (opinion of THOMAS, J.) (slip op., at 8–10). But in substance void the law is often exactly what these courts did: rather than try to construe or in­terpret the statute before them, judges frequently held the law simply too vague to apply. Blackstone, for example, did not suggest the court in his illustration should have given a narrowing construction to the term “cattle,” but argued against giving it any effect at all. 1 Blackstone 88; see also Scalia, Assorted Canards of Contemporary Legal Analysis, 40 Case W. Res. L. Rev. 581, 582 (1989) (“I doubt . . . that any modern court would go to the lengths de­ scribed by Blackstone in its application of the rule that penal statutes are to be strictly construed”)...
Another history-based shot at Thomas:
Alternatively still, JUSTICE THOMAS suggests that, at least at the time of the founding, aliens present in this country may not have been understood as possessing any rights under the Due Process Clause. For support, he points to the Alien Friends Act of 1798. An Act Concern ing Aliens §1, 1 Stat. 571; post, at 6–12 (opinion of THOMAS, J.). But the Alien Friends Act—better known as the “Alien” part of the Alien and Sedition Acts—is one of the most notorious laws in our country’s history... [I]t was widely condemned as unconstitution­al by Madison and many others. It also went unenforced, may have cost the Federalist Party its existence, and lapsed a mere two years after its enactment. With this fuller view, it seems doubtful the Act tells us a great deal about aliens’ due process rights at the founding.

113 comments:

wendybar said...

Great News for Illegals, especially violent ones!!! Yay for them!!!

John Lynch said...

Due process?

Kevin said...

The court's 5-4 decision — an unusual alignment in which new Justice Neil Gorsuch joined the four liberal justices — concerns a catchall provision of immigration law that defines what makes a crime violent. Conviction for a crime of violence makes deportation "a virtual certainty" for an immigrant, no matter how long he has lived in the United States, Justice Elena Kagan wrote in her opinion for the court.

The obvious fix is to simply deport any immigrant who commits a crime.

If Congress doesn't like it, they can pass a law outlining the crimes its acceptable for immigrants to commit.

rehajm said...

The obvious fix is to simply deport any immigrant who commits a crime.

Isn't the obvious solution to deport any illegal immigrant? Or is that kind of merciless depravity only what happens in totalitarian countries like say, Canada?

John Lynch said...

I'm not angry when the courts support due process. Please, more of that.

If Congress wants to enforce immigration law, then enforce immigration law. Spend the money. Staff the courts.

John Lynch said...

Yup, I was right. Due Process Clause. Good for Gorsuch.

Inga said...

Oooops, not what was expected, eh? Gorsuch will now be demeaned and despised, like Chief Justice Roberts was.

Gahrie said...

This case involved a legal immigrant, not an illegal one. (I am troubled that the man lived here for 26 years and never became a citizen.)

The solution is simple..rewrite the law and make the wording more specific. The more explicit we can make laws, the less room for judges to legislate.

The obvious fix is to simply deport any immigrant who commits a crime.

Jay walking? Speeding?

If Congress doesn't like it, they can pass a law outlining the crimes its acceptable for immigrants to commit.

Probably more effective to list the crimes that would subject an immigrant to deportation. (I would definitely include entering the country illegally)

Mike Sylwester said...

The correct legal term is illegal alien.

Kevin said...

Isn't the obvious solution to deport any illegal immigrant?

He was here legally since 1992, but was not yet a citizen.

Bay Area Guy said...

The "Get Trump" Squad has many talented lawyers to vex and annoy our judiciary with many legal tergiversations

Big Mike said...

Gorsuch wrote that "no one should be surprised that the Constitution looks unkindly on any law so vague that reasonable people cannot understand its terms and judges do not know where to begin in applying it."

He’s right, you know.

jono39 said...

Bravo

Kevin said...

Jay walking? Speeding?

Elana Kagan demands clarity, and it's clarity I provide.

Probably more effective to list the crimes that would subject an immigrant to deportation.

Would that not also produce a list of crimes they're allowed to commit? Let Congress decide what speed over the limit becomes deportation-worthy. Then let them defend their list.

Inga said...

“ (I am troubled that the man lived here for 26 years and never became a citizen.)”

Yes why do some live here for so many years and not see fit to become a citizen of the country that has given them so many opportunities? So many immigrants cannot wait to become citizens.

Kevin said...

Gorsuch wrote that "....

If laws are going to be clear, its going to be much tougher on Congress from here on out.

I, for one, welcome the Supreme Court directing them to do their jobs rather than basking in the power of the void.

Jeff Roth said...

This in a nutshell is why the rest of the majority wouldn't join his opinion -

"Before the Revolu­tion, the crime of treason in English law was so capa­ciously construed that the mere expression of disfavored opinions could invite transportation or death. The founders cited the crown’s abuse of “pretended” crimes like this as one of their reasons for revolution. See Declaration of Independence"

That line of thinking would lead to invalidating hate crime laws (YAY), a lot of Title IX expansive interpretations (YAY), and many other key aspects of leftist jurisprudence today.

Birkel said...

Good!
The Court should force Congress to write laws that reasonable people could reasonably understand.

Kevin said...

Yes why do some live here for so many years and not see fit to become a citizen of the country that has given them so many opportunities?

Many of them love America but still feel a strong relationship to their home country where their parents and most of their relatives still live.

The increasing availability of dual citizenship is solving that problem for them.

Kevin said...

@Jeff

What an inopportune time to point out treason isn't whatever you want it to be...

Kevin said...

See Declaration of Independence

I hope Gorsuch adopts this as his permanent sign-off. It might eventually intrigue enough of the Court's members to read the thing.

Bay Area Guy said...

"Vague Laws" are a problem. Unnecessarily detailed laws a problem too (ever read your own insurance policy, let alone the Federal Regs?)

Gorsuch makes a lofty point here, but that's for another day.

The political realities are that one party, the Democrat, wants to make it as confusing and as difficult as possible to deport anyone. That's how they roll. Hence, in general, they must be opposed.

Gahrie said...

The increasing availability of dual citizenship is solving that problem for them.

The United States does not recognize dual citizenship, and our oath of citizenship requires you to explicitly renounce any prior allegiances.

"I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God."

Sebastian said...

So, let me get this straight: judges bitch when Congress sets very specific guidelines constraining their judgment, for example to require minimum sentences, and judges bitch when Congress sets general guidelines about crimes involving "substantial risk of violence." Because the Constitution.

Anyway, burglary does involve a substantial risk of violence, and more than one increases the risk. Any immigrant committing it should be outta here.

Invite, invite, invite: Scalia might have agreed with Gorsuch, but he would not have written this way.

Gahrie said...

See Declaration of Independence

I hope Gorsuch adopts this as his permanent sign-off. It might eventually intrigue enough of the Court's members to read the thing.


The Declaration is not a legal document and should at best be dicta.

gspencer said...

Well, if he ever gets the chance for a go at "hate speech," does this opinion mean that Gorsuch and the lefties will come down of the side of "Congress shall make no law?"

Kevin said...

"U.S. law does not mention dual nationality or require a person to choose one nationality or another. A U.S. citizen may naturalize in a foreign state without any risk to his or her U.S. citizenship. However, persons who acquire a foreign nationality after age 18 by applying for it may relinquish their U.S. nationality if they wish to do so. In order to relinquish U.S. nationality by virtue of naturalization as a citizen of a foreign state, the law requires that the person must apply for the foreign nationality voluntarily and with the intention to relinquish U.S. nationality. Intent may be shown by the person’s statements and conduct."

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/travel-legal-considerations/Advice-about-Possible-Loss-of-US-Nationality-Dual-Nationality/Dual-Nationality.html

Rob said...

If the Government is unable to deport aliens who commit serious crimes, doesn't that increase the desirability of tougher measures to prevent people from entering the country illegally? And isn't that a victory of sorts for Trump?

Kevin said...

The Declaration is not a legal document and should at best be dicta.

It goes to state of mind, Your Honor. It's less a legal reference than one which outlines the clear intention of the parties.

Kevin said...

[I]t was widely condemned as unconstitution­al by Madison and many others.

On one hand, we shouldn't take the condemnation of any law as unconstitutional as anything other than one person's opinion.

On the other hand, it is Madison.

Robert Cook said...

"The United States does not recognize dual citizenship, and our oath of citizenship requires you to explicitly renounce any prior allegiances."

That's essentially just a loyalty oath...the new citizen swears to renounce his loyalty to his home nation...it doesn't mean that one surrenders one's other national citizenship. There are many Americans who have dual citizenships.

eric said...

What if one party wants to make all laws as general and non specific as possible because they know the judicial branch is piped with two types of judges?

1) Those judges who will always side with Democrats, no matter if there are contradictions.

2) Those judges who will try and give a fair reading to the law, even if the final outcome isn't what they would prefer.

In other words, this is how we got Trump and is the great divide between Trump supporters and Never Trump.

Which is to say, Trump supporters elevate the principle of fairness. Tired of the rules changing. You get 6 points when you have the ball and we get 1 point when we have the ball.

While Never Trump likes to pint to their lofty principles like what gorsuch points to here.

I have no doubt Never Trump is going to love how principled Gorsuch was today, while Trump supporters are going to shake their heads at how naive and foolish this way of playing the game is.

Gahrie said...

@ Kevin, @ Cook:

What part of:

I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen;

is unclear?

The Cracker Emcee Classic said...

This dude wasn't illegal. A line is being defined and I don't think open-borders people are going to be that excited about what that definition means.

gspencer said...

If put to it, I'd argue that the Declaration has been incorporated by reference into the Constitution. The pertinent reference is found at end of the document, "Done in convention by the unanimous consent of the states present the seventeenth day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven and of the independence of the United States of America the twelfth."

Achilles said...

“The obvious fix is to simply deport any immigrant who commits a crime.”

I assume you realize that already has a 100% match rates

Kevin said...

is unclear?

The part where it leaves out "from this day forward and henceforth for all time," or something to that effect.

My understanding was that when I was growing up the US did not recognize dual citizenship. And then one day it did.

I suspect someone wrote a very big check once nice (EU + Australia & NZ) countries started offering dual citizenship. It probably didn't help that the US was becoming more taxed and less attuned to civil liberties at that time.

However, I know many Irish in Boston, for example, who have both US and Irish citizenship.

Kevin said...

I assume you realize that already has a 100% match rates

I assume you are forgetting the many people in the country here legally but not citizens.

rcocean said...

We get these kind of decisions because dumbshit conservative WILL NOT demand Republican Presidents appoint Thomas Type conservatives to the SCOTUS.

If the D's don't hate a Republican nominee that means he's a squish. So we Roberts and Souter and Kennedy and now it looks like a new 5th R who will Be "Reasonable".

Maybe instead of patting themselves on the back for being so "Noble" and not having "Litmus Tests" the R's should start emulating the D's and start having them.

johns said...

I hate this case. The defendant has been in the US since 1994. I am all for building a wall and keeping out illegal immigrants, but I have a problem with people who have been here that long. The US didn't enforce its immigration laws for decades, and immigrants knew this, so they came here. It's wrong IMHO to wait 25 years and then decide that now we are going to enforce laws after people have lived here that long.
The case is tough because he committed burglary. But why not send him to prison? Not all burglars become repeat offenders. Maybe he could still turn out to be a law-abiding person, like many others who are sent to prison.

Richard said...

Gahrie,
@ Kevin, @ Cook:

What part of:

I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen;

is unclear?


However some other nations will still recognize the person as a citizen of their country even though they become an American citizen, e.g., once an Englishman always an Englishman.

Achilles said...

Inga said...
“Oooops, not what was expected, eh? Gorsuch will now be demeaned and despised, like Chief Justice Roberts was.“

Unlikely. We will read the details of the case and critically assess the merits.

In this case it was a legal immigrant. The distinction between legal and illegal immigrant matters to people who are not as stupid as the average leftist.

Jeff Weimer said...

"Inga said...

Oooops, not what was expected, eh? Gorsuch will now be demeaned and despised, like Chief Justice Roberts was."

You're projecting. It's not always win/lose by any means necessary. Gorsuch's reasoning is sound, and invites thoughtful discussion and reflection.

Robert's reasoning in "it's really a tax" was not, and he deserves the all the static he's received.

Neither is Kagan's "Oh, no; we must bend over backwards for immigrants, they're on a knife edge of deportation" opinion. That's just lazy and backward-reasoning from the desired result.

Kevin said...

If the D's don't hate a Republican nominee that means he's a squish.

Bravo! Once they start "interpreting" statutes they are toast. It's now just a matter of getting them to interpret them in the correct way as defined by the liberals on the court.

See: Roberts on Obamacare.

What Kagan and others didn't see was Gorsuch using this case to goad them into saying laws should be clear or thrown out.

The shoe is now firmly on the other foot, and he will cite this precedent when the next case comes before the court.

Achilles said...

Kevin said...
I assume you realize that already has a 100% match rates

“I assume you are forgetting the many people in the country here legally but not citizens.“

I missed that. The first story I read didn’t make the distinction and I am conditioned to assume any media reports like this call illegals immigrants.

Burglary though is a very offensive crime.

Still I probably agree with Gorsuch on the merits of clear statutes.

robother said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
readering said...

This is a misleading storyline. The case started in the Obama administration. It was inherited by the Trump administration. It's a defeat for federal prosecutors not a Trump immigration defeat.

Tommy Duncan said...

"Oooops, not what was expected, eh? Gorsuch will now be demeaned and despised, like Chief Justice Roberts was."

While others on this blog are working to understand this ruling and what it means to immigration issues, Inga throws out a political cheap shot.

That, Inga, is why so many here despise you. Instead of contributing to the understanding of others you chose to satisfy your own need to insult your perceived enemies.

Kevin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin said...

That, Inga, is why so many here despise you. Instead of contributing to the understanding of others you chose to satisfy your own need to insult your perceived enemies.

But that was the only talking point they had at the leftie sites celebrating the idea that maybe Gorsuch is Souter reincarnate.

She brought it over here like she was supposed to do. She. Did. Her. Job.

She's on another thread at Althouse saying a woman's breasts aren't sexual and their only function is to produce milk for the newborn.

Consider that for a second before you denounce her for not adding her personal opinion here.

robother said...

The SCOTUS here merely voided the subsidiary clause of the statute that allowed aliens convicted of felonies that, while not violent in and of themselves, MIGHT have risked violence in the commission of the act (e.g., what if a homeowner interrupted a burglary in progress, even though that didn't actually happen here.) I think Gorsuch is on firm ground here--even, as Ann says, ground that Scalia himself would have trod.

Nonapod said...

I've never been a fan of vague wording in law. It causes far more harm than good. It leads to nothing but confusion and political opportunism in the form of legislating from the bench. Of course, the Judicial Branch may not have much to do if we typically had much more specific and descriptive laws. Alas there'd be no more blessed emanations and penumbras.

tcrosse said...

In 1944 an FBI man came to visit my Grandma because she was an Enemy Alien. She had come from Germany as a young woman in the 1890's. She told him that inasmuch as she had married my Grandfather in 1903, she was a US citizen. Not so, said the G-man, because my Grandpa was still a Canadian, even though he had registered for the US draft in both World Wars and voted all along. They both became naturalized in 1945.

Sebastian said...

"[I]t was widely condemned as unconstitution­al by Madison and many others." But was it attacked that way based on a generally supported assumption that aliens have "due process rights"?? Gorsuch's shot at Thomas is not specific enough to tell.

Haven't read the full opinion, but I hope he isn't arguing that vagueness in a statute is itself a due process violation.

Bad Lieutenant said...


While others on this blog are working to understand this ruling and what it means to immigration issues, Inga throws out a political cheap shot.


Not entirely cheap. I look forward to Chuck's reaction.

Hagar said...

In order to get a permanent visa, I and my sponsor had to sign that we clearly understood that if I at any time became "a burden to the United States' taxpayers," I would be promptly deported and charged for all expenses connected therewith.

So, assuming these rules are still on the books: this guy was here legally, but committed a crime for which he was tried, convicted, and sentenced to jail. All of which cost US taxpayers a bundle, and he thus was quite properly subject to deportation.

Bay Area Guy said...

Gorsuch's lofty discussion of the Alien and Sedition Act is wonderful in abstract, but shows his naivete in practice.

In the real world, nobody remembers the Alien and Sedition Act, and modern day liberals would rather start taking down statues of Madison and Jefferson and Adams for bring white supremecists.

Thomas is much more savvy. He understands the Left, what their objectives are, how they go about achieving them, and how they try to destroy obstacles in their path towards achievement.

I guess even really smart newbies on the Supreme Court have a learning curve.

traditionalguy said...

Gorsuch is letting his elitist side show through his mask of being a traditional American Cowboy type. Thomas is a commoner in need of being deplored by him. And that reveals how he views the rest of the Trump voters.

Hagar said...

Of course, Democrat officials are reluctant to deport anyone on the "burden to US taxpayers" basis, since that would also cover anyone not a citizen receiving "social benefits" of any kind.

Inga said...

“That, Inga, is why so many here despise you. Instead of contributing to the understanding of others you chose to satisfy your own need to insult your perceived enemies.”

Yawn.

“She's on another thread at Althouse saying a woman's breasts aren't sexual and their only function is to produce milk for the newborn.”

I said if one was rational, one wouldn’t oversexualize breasts as they are merely nature’s way of feeding one’s young. I give my personal opinion All.THE.TIME. One of the main reasons I’m here and if you don’t like it you can kiss my royal ass.

Inga said...

“Many of them love America but still feel a strong relationship to their home country where their parents and most of their relatives still live.”

Yes, true. Maybe this is also true for the legal immigrant in question in this case.

Bay Area Guy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trumpit said...

I've long been in favor of deporting Clarence Thomas back to Stupidville where he will find lots of company. I believe it is located somewhere in the backwoods of Tennessee where the deer and the antelope play.

Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam. Where the deer and the antelope play. Where seldom is heard a discouraging word. And the skies are not cloudy all day. Home, home on the range. Where the deer and the antelope play. Where seldom is heard a discouraging word. And the skies are not cloudy all day.

Gorsuch took Thomas to the woodshed in his Opinion.

Take Me Out To The Woodshed - Poem by Dag Nabbit
Sung to the tune of 'Take me out to the ball game.'

Take me out to the woodshed
Drag me out by my hair
Give me a beating I won't forget
I don't care if I don't make it back

Leave me beaten, broken and bleeding
and looking like I'm almost dead
Thrash me to one inch of my life
at the old wood shed.
Dag Nabbit

Martin said...

Gorsuch is laying down a challenge to Congress to do its damn job rather than passing amorphous, ambiguous, feel-good bills and that express a feel-good sentiment but leave it to administrative agencies and the courts to figure out what they mean. Like those lazy so-and-so's on the Hill have been doing for the last 50 years, give or take.

Good for him.

narayanan said...

Gahrie "The Declaration is not a legal document and should at best be dicta."
I have heard similar before but never understood - kindly expatiate in details please and advise reference material to look up

narayanan said...

Could the reason for above be because to treat Declaration otherwise would mean adherence to history and having to pass judgment on the rectitude of the founders and later congresses?

To my thinking the Constitution is a betrayal of the Declaration

I may be schizophrenic about this.

Achilles said...

readering said...
This is a misleading storyline. The case started in the Obama administration. It was inherited by the Trump administration. It's a defeat for federal prosecutors not a Trump immigration defeat.

Salient point. But.

Nobody here cares about who "won" or "lost." It is the what that counts.

Except leftists/democrat voters and other idiots of course. The Inga stupidity above is a classic example. They run personality cults and Mcguffin quests.

Tommy Duncan said...

Inga said:

"I give my personal opinion All.THE.TIME. One of the main reasons I’m here and if you don’t like it you can kiss my royal ass."

We get that you throw out whatever pleases you at the moment and that don't give a damn about others. To repeat my previous point, this is why we despise you. You are spiteful.

Jim at said...

Gorsuch will now be demeaned and despised, like Chief Justice Roberts was. - Inga

Yeah. Because the cases - and the politics surrounding them - are exactly the same.

You know, you promised to leave this blog and not return until Trump was indicted. Maybe you should adhere to that promise.

Gahrie said...

Gahrie "The Declaration is not a legal document and should at best be dicta."
I have heard similar before but never understood - kindly expatiate in details please and advise reference material to look up


The Declaration is nothing more than a declaration of war between some of the colonists and the government of Great Britain. It is an expression of political ideas and principles that are foundational to our republic, but it has no more legal standing than the Bible does.


Achilles said...

Gahrie said...
@ Kevin, @ Cook:

What part of:

I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen;

is unclear?


Allegiance, not citizenship.

My wife has been a naturalized citizen. Her 6th year in the army she was up to get a TS/SCI clearance and they asked her to actually renounce her Hong Kong dual citizenship. By the end of that investigation she had decided to get out of the army so she pulled her application. She gets to go through much shorter lines.

In the end they are all just words to most.

Achilles said...

Inga said...

I said if one was rational, one wouldn’t oversexualize breasts as they are merely nature’s way of feeding one’s young. I give my personal opinion All.THE.TIME. One of the main reasons I’m here and if you don’t like it you can kiss my royal ass.

The problem isn't that you are here.

The problem is you are so fucking stupid and petty while you are here.

Unknown said...

I am so acclimated to the doublespeak that I just assumed 'immigrant' meant 'illegal immigrant.'

Gahrie said...

What part of:

I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen;

is unclear?

Allegiance, not citizenship.


Heretofore: up to this time

This clearly means that from now on you are no longer a citizen of the state you had been a citizen of before you took the oath.

Yancey Ward said...

The law in question is vague- it attempts to create a distinction between violent and non-violent crimes, but then provides not statutory basis for making that decision- leaving too much discretion to the executive branch. In other words, it makes disparate treatment much more likely, which is and should be a big no no for anyone interested in civil rights of legal residents.

Yancey Ward said...

Is is a decision Scalia might well have made- yes, it is.

Yancey Ward said...

You can't have two executive authorities being legally able to treat the same crime differently when it comes to deportation. It isn't even enough that one administration might right clear regulations enforcing it- disparate treatment can happen over different administrations. Congress really needs to do the definition explicitly, and can do so, and might well before the end of the year.

Birches said...

I saw this headline from someone gloating about Gorsuch being a squish and thought that it seemed a little too vague to actually be telling the whole truth. I thought to myself, "Althouse will explain if this is a big deal or not." I was right on both counts. Gorsuch's reasoning is sound and Althouse cuts through the BS.

Francisco D said...

I am not a lawyer, much less a constitutional expert, so I don't have a strong intellectual grasp of this decision.

Gorsuch is an impressive jurist who clams to follow the Constitution regardless of political consequences. I accept him on his word. He will not be another Souter.

I might have wanted a different outcome, but maybe Congress needs to do a better job of writing laws. (I know. It's strains credulity to think that the Congress is incompetent).

FullMoon said...

Trump wins because he can honestly shrug his shoulders and say:

"Hey, I tried"
And, he did, didn't he?

Khesanh 0802 said...

I get a kick out of this being a defeat for Trump. This case was originally argued in January 2017 under Obama; reargued when Gorsuch joined the court. The case was brought by the Obama administration and continued, as so many are, under the next administration without, I am sure any serious review. I believe Gorsuch's point that the law is too vague to administer is consistent with his approach and I agree in this case. I suspect we will see him make the same argument in other places where, as Francisco D says Congress' incompetence shines through. I haven't read Kagan's opinion, but I think Gorsuch's concurrence will prove to be a potent weapon in combatting the administrative state.

Birkel said...

The problem with Supreme Court cases is people judging the outcome. Specifically, the Justices decide the outcome and then reason backward through the precedents to find their logic. It's a frustrating situation.

The logic is what matters. The logic supports the institution. The institution is the thing that matters.

(And Inga must be particularly upset that her "hot take" has proven incorrect. It's almost as if she cannot understand the opposing opinion.)

Inga said...

“The problem is you are so fucking stupid and petty while you are here.”

The problem is that you’re an extremist nutcase, so your opinion means next to nothing.

Inga said...

“You know, you promised to leave this blog and not return until Trump was indicted. Maybe you should adhere to that promise.”

Maybe you too should kiss my royal ass. I’m here and I’m glad it bothers you.

Etienne said...

The Supreme Court made a majority decision. Calling this decision a "loss" or a "win" is to say the court has no merit.

I think the politics of today, are taking us all to a hell that really exists.

Inga said...
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readering said...

If one is going to use this decision to evaluate Gorsuch, remember that the Court issued another merits decision today, regarding habeas corpus review of a state court criminal conviction. 6-3. Breyer opinion reversing 11th Circuit (covering Georgia). Blistering dissent by Gorsuch, joined by Thomas and Alito.

Bob said...

Inga: I said if one was rational, one wouldn’t oversexualize breasts as they are merely nature’s way of feeding one’s young.

You really ought to read Desmond Morris's The Naked Ape, written many decades ago. Human breasts don't need to be big and shapely to feed babies. The size and shape of human breasts are typically thought to be signalling elements to foster face-to-face copulation and enhance the pair-bond (doesn't always work, obviously, but still...)

Men are attracted to boobs and butts. Hence they are rationally considered "sexualized", not "oversexualized".

Tommy Duncan said...

Inga said:

"Maybe you too should kiss my royal ass. I’m here and I’m glad it bothers you."

And so it is fitting that from this day forward you shall be known on the Althouse Blog as "Royal Ass Inga".

Inga said...

The rationale of voting for Trump because he would appoint SC Justices who will vote reliably in a typical conservative way is irrational. Both Roberts and Gorsuch and other Justices have voted in surprising, deeply disapointing ways to conservatives despite being appointed by a Republican President. This is reassuring and makes me worry less about bad presidents like Trump being in power, because I have much more faith in the Judicial Branch than in the Executive. The Legislative branch is next to useless and the Executive has grown to be too powerful. Thank goodness for the Judicial and that the Legislative won’t clarify the current immigration law to satisfy the xenophobes

Inga said...

“And so it is fitting that from this day forward you shall be known on the Althouse Blog as "Royal Ass Inga".”

Yawn.

Inga said...

Bob, see the discussion here.

Charlie Currie said...

Doesn't sound to me like Gorsuch will be finding any "hidden" rights between the lines of the Constitution.

narayanan said...

Gahrie - "but it has no more legal standing"

now you are bringing in new and irrelevant concepts - what has standing to do with it?
we are talking creation of a country and its beginning -

The signatures on the declaration follow after
"We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress,"

Why not admit that the country went off the rails with a mistaken tradition

Were the Founders then Usurpers ?

Gahrie said...

Were the Founders then Usurpers

That argument could be made. Their job was to revise the Article of Confederation...not create a new nation.

narayanan said...

Francisco "X is an impressive jurist who clams to follow the Constitution regardless of political consequences"

so did Roger Taney

None claim to be following the Declaration - see may cavilling above

narayanan said...

Gahrie
I was using Founders and Signers of the Declaration interchangeably - is that not accepted use

Static Ping said...

I suppose I should note here that burglary is not necessarily a violent crime, as Gorsuch noted here. All you have to do to commit burglary is enter a building or other structure without permission with the intention of committing a crime, even if the underlying crime is never attempted. We tend to think of burglary as home robberies and that is a common form of burglary, but a burglar can go through a open door in the middle of the day. A burglar can enter an unlocked car to steal spare change. A burglar could run into a random home to escape the cops.

As for the ruling, I'm not especially concerned. Gorsuch has a point.

Drago said...

Aide de Camp Inga: "The rationale of voting for Trump because he would appoint SC Justices who will vote reliably in a typical conservative way is irrational"

LOL

Fresh off her deep analysis of military strategy and tactics, Inga now regales us with deep analysis of conservative jurisprudence and philosophy.

Next up, a toddler smudges dirt on his face.

There is clearly a theme here....

Gahrie said...

I was using Founders and Signers of the Declaration interchangeably - is that not accepted use

As far as the general public is concerned..probably so. As a historian and political scientist, I only consider signers of the Constitution to be Founding Fathers. However it is true that most people consider Jefferson to be a Founding Father, and he only signed the Declaration and not the Constitution. Just for the record only six men signed both documents, and most people would only recognize Ben Franklin's name among them.

Etienne said...

One thing to keep in mind, is the US Constitution was written on the backs of millions of natives who were here first but were rubbed-out.

I always smile when the Moslems come ashore in Europe.

Just wait for their Declaration of Independence... yeow!

Gahrie said...

"We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress,"

Neither the "United States" nor "Congress" mentioned in that statement refer to the bodies that exist today.

The term United States referred to the 13 independent states that had been former British colonies in North America. It did not refer to a national government. The term "congress" referred to a "a formal meeting or series of meetings for discussion between delegates," not the legislative body that bears that name today.

Rabel said...

Gorsuch's concurrence was an attack on judicial activism and should be seen as a very conservative vote.

What he argued, in the main, was that the law, as worded, left the decision as to whether burglary fit the definition of a violent felony in the hands of the judiciary, and the doctrine of separation of powers demands that that decision be made by the legislative branch, and that the law in question did not meet that standard.

The fact that the convict in the case was an immigrant mattered only in the detail that he was being subject to a deportation order, which is a civil action, and previous court rulings had not definitively applied the vagueness disqualifier to civil actions, but only criminal proceedings.

That's not to say that the immigration issue had no effect on the ruling. I have little doubt that it was a factor in the votes of at least several of the liberal judges who signed off on the majority decision.

Birkel said...

Royal (and here I thought the Constitution got rid of titles of nobility) ass Inga was wrong on every point. Conservatives do not want a super-legislature where a Court should be. That is what Leftist Collectivists want.

Gorsuch did well to demand the legislature do its job.

Royal ass Inga cannot understand. CANNOT

Begonia said...

@Kevin, @Cook, et al:

Let me google that for you:

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/travel-legal-considerations/us-citizenship.html



gbarto said...

The same type of vague, over broad language gets used by the gun grabbers. Glad Gorsuch has gone on record as properly suspicious of it.

FullMoon said...

Titty Twister
LLR
Fopdoodle
Royal Ass Inga


Life is good

Matthew Sablan said...

I'm more and more fine with this decision. Laws should be clear.

Michael McNeil said...

I’m also fine with the decision and Gorsuch’s role therein.

As for Inga’s attempted point:

I said if one was rational, one wouldn’t oversexualize breasts as they are merely nature’s way of feeding one’s young.

I see Bob has answered Inga already, but I’ll go ahead with my own reply, which isn’t identical to his (and Inga’s reply to Bob not withstanding):

“Rationality” is not a quality exhibited by the choices that evolutionary processes make. Evolutionary products much more resemble the results of accident and contingency — giving rise to something like the vagaries of “history” or even a Rube Goldberg machine — rather than the logical consequences of reason!

Moreover, evolution has absolutely no problem usurping body parts into a new role — while still perhaps keeping the old function going as well.

One might note that females of our nearest ape relations, chimpanzees, possess breasts which are tiny, and totally not protuberant, unlike (most) human women’s breasts — but even so, female chimpanzee’s mammaries provide nourishment for their infants perfectly well, no problem.

Why then are human female breasts — when sexually mature — so “protuberant,” despite their not needing to be so to produce milk for babies?

Denying the obvious secondary sexual purpose of human women’s breasts in inflaming the minds of men (since it’s supposedly “irrational” for breasts to do more than one thing) is just as naïve and ultimately unreasonable as disputing the (similar!) sexual functionality of wings in birds which conduct elaborate mating-dance displays waving them at each other — or the dramatic (sexually attractive) spread tails of peacocks.

bozonomous said...

Can you tell us what this says and means, so we don't have to read it.

traditionalguy said...
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traditionalguy said...

This means Gorsuch is another self centered elite scholar who now wants to see Congress write and somehow pass a perfectly worded Bill about deportation before he will let Trump protect Americans from the horde of Mexican citizens here as trespassers and CHEAP LABOR.

But Gorsuch is not stupid. He knows that vote of his blocks Trump until the GOP Leaders allow a 51 vote Senate passage for such a Bill. And that ends it because the bought off GOP globalists will never allow that to happen. So it means Gorsuch is a Globalist too. Maybe we can kick him up to the World Court.

And those same GOP Leaders did allow that 51 vote passage to Confirm Gorsuch. They knew their man was going to ditch Trump.

DEEBEE said...

We are already morons, if we are parsing the second breaking of law to see if retribution happens for the first