I recall that, four years ago, Sarah Palin, who was running for Vice President of the United States on the Republican line, could only name one Supreme Court case she disagreed with. ABC News came up with 24 Supreme Court Cases Every Presidential Candidate Should Know and something called Ranker ranks the Most Controversial Supreme Court Cases. Palin named Roe v. Wade, regarding abortion, #1 on the Ranker list, #11 on ABC News’ mostly chronological roster. In that light:
What are your favorite Supreme Court rulings?
What are your least favorite Supreme Court rulings?
On my favored side has to be Gideon v. Wainwright, where the right to an attorney was affirmed (ABC #6); Miranda v. Arizona (ABC #9); Lawrence v. Texas (Ranker #4 ABC #18); and my all-time favorite, Loving v. Virginia (ABC #10), which I wrote about here, and elsewhere. What about Brown v Board of Education, (Ranker #2, ABC #5)? Important in the broad sweep of breaking down separate but equal, which had been codified in Plessy v Ferguson (Ranker #9, ABC #3), but the resegregation of public schools is mighty discouraging.
On the least favored side:
Citizens United (Ranker #6, ABC #8), which encouraged an outrageous amount of big money in the political process; Kelo v. City of New London (ABC #19), the wrong use of eminent domain, in my view; and of course, the Dred Scott decision (Ranker #7, ABC #2). Bush v Gore (Ranker #2, ABC #16) holds a special place, though, for I believe it signaled, for some people, the beginning of the end of the Supreme Court as a deliberative body and the perception, true or not, as another political operation.
Last year, in Newsweek, in a title changed to The GOP Candidates Read Wacky Books (they got rid of the Bizarro reference from the print version), Paul Begala wrote:
Which brings us to Rick Perry, who got a C in animal breeding at Texas A&M. He’s not a big reader. But he claims to have been influenced by The Five Thousand Year Leap: 28 Great Ideas That Changed the World by W. Cleon Skousen. Glenn Beck, who went from Fox News stardom to oblivion, has pushed Skousen’s book relentlessly. It is stridently anti-Washington, tracing the decline of federalism to the 17th Amendment, which allows citizens, rather than state legislatures, to choose senators. Skousen, a John Bircher, is so far right that even National Review’s Mark Hemingway has called him an “all-around nutjob.”