Comments about ‘Richard Davis: Americans losing confidence in Supreme Court’

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Published: Wednesday, June 12 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Roland Kayser
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Mr. Davis teaches political science at BYU? Yet he thinks that it was a Supreme Court decision from 1857 that made slavery "constitutional"? Such constitutional illiteracy should be unacceptable in a Jr. High School Civics instructor.

Colorado Springs, AP

The Supreme Court was not designed to respond to democratic forces in the same way that the other brances of government do. In fact, courts in general are essentially "anti-democratic" institutions. They are supposed to adhere to the law regardless of what the general population thinks. Whether that happens in practice is another issue, of course.

Hayden, ID

I lost any confidence in the SCOTUS when they ruled that Obamacare was constitutional as a TAX when Obama promised over and over again it wasn't a tax! Now the federal government can force us to buy and do anything, all they need to do is call it a tax. "Tax" now can mean anything and now really means nothing!

Ogden, UT

I agree with Mountainman the Obamacare case was the straw for me. I have zero confidence in the U.S. government period.

salt lake city, utah

So Mtm you were ok with Roe v Wade?

Hayden, ID

New flash for you pragmatist! Our tax dollars are paying for abortions. So the government is forcing taxpayers to buy abortions, thanks to Roe v Wade. Where exactly is that written in the constitution?

Roland Kayser
Cottonwood Heights, UT

It has been illegal to use federal tax funds to pay for abortions since the 1970's.

American Fork, UT

The inscription on the building in the photo says "Equal Justice Under Law". Protecting those of the same gender who want to get married seems to fit the description nicely.

m.g. scott
clearfield, UT

I think the "lifetime" appointment is really a bad idea for all judges. And, if there is belief that judges are supposed to be non partisan politically, then why do Presidents appoint conservative or liberal judges? That the judiciary is blind and non political is the biggest joke of all. The only way a judge could be non partisan is if he were living in sequestration like jurors for their whole lives. John Roberts I believe has delt the worst political blow to the country by allowing Obamacare. That decision will rock the foundations of America for decades. But, we can all be happy for Justice Roberts, as I'm sure that he and his family are getting all the D.C area "A" list invitations that they would have lost if he had ruled using the Constitution.

one vote
Salt Lake City, UT

Only the radical tea party conservatives. Everyone else respects the law.

Hayden, ID

@ Roland.The effort to defund Planned Parenthood was voted down in the Senate by a 58-42 vote. Tax payers therefore are paying for abortions. Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider received $350 million in taxpayer funds last year alone.

Columbus, OH

The court only has the power to interpret the law as it is written, according to the constitution. It is not the Supreme Court's job, for example, to decide on the merits of Obamacare. Public opinion should absolutely NOT be taken into account by the court. The design was made such that public opinion should drive what laws are being created and the court only rules on its constitutionality. If an opinion is so problematic, the people do have the power to overturn the court (in theory) by amending the constitution.

Also, I guarantee if there were public opinion polls throughout history, the court's approval rating would have been as low as it is any time they took on truly controversial topics. Civil rights, abortion, health care, gay marriage, and affirmative action are sure to upset a lot of folks. Some of those negative votes might be restricted to one issue, while they approve of the remaining.

m.g. scott
clearfield, UT

Re: one vote

Are you serious? Where do the Tea Party not respect the law? They may want to change it yes, but so does every other political group. And to say what you said in light of all that we are finding out about this current administration, respecting the law seems pretty low on Obama and Holders list right now.

m.g. scott
clearfield, UT


To further one of your points, the kind of Judge I want on any court is the one that will for example, profess a hatred for guns and the 2nd Amendment, BUT, will nevertheless rule in favor of the right to keep and bear arms because that is what the constitution says. The dangerous judges are the ones who will find some convoluted way to rule in favor of their own wants. Roe v Wade was an example of such.

In addition to my first post, I actually think that if the Supreme Court were located in say Omaha Nebraska, many judges would rule differently because they would be out from under the pressure of D.C. politics

Nashville, TN

@mg scott --

"The only way a judge could be non partisan is if he were living in sequestration like jurors for their whole lives. John Roberts I believe has delt the worst political blow to the country by allowing Obamacare."

You do remember that it was BUSH who appointed Roberts -- right?

m.g. scott
clearfield, UT

Re: plainbrownwrapper

I absolutely remember that he was a Bush appointee. And once again, it would seem that Roberts may go the way of a Seuter who was another Bush appointee, namely HW Bush. I long for the day when a Supreme Court judge appointed by a Democrat President, like Obama, becomes a conservative. It seems that when Democrats appoint liberals, they stay liberal. When Republicans appoint judges, it becomes a tossup as to where they end up politically. As I said above, what I want is non-partisan constitutional first Judges. But as long as the judiciary is as much political as any other part of government, then I want conservative judges appointed as much as liberals want liberal ones.

Last post.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

I think the waning confidence is directly related to increasing political extremism in the country. The political center is being hollowed out. So, decisions that do not cater to one extreme or the other get less respect from both sides. Decisions that do go one way or the other are rejected out of hand by the other side and there are fewer in the middle to at least be partially persuaded.

In the end, our nation is an agreement to get along and work together for certain common goals. We formalized that agreement first via the Articles of Confederation and then via the Constitution. But in spite of ANY document, governance requires civility and some ability to moderate ones views for the betterment and advancement of the whole. We are losing that quality and that does not bode well for our nation.

We have sown seeds of nastiness and divisiveness. The law of the harvest tells us what we will reap. Karma if you will.

Read Washington's Farewell Address for an indictment of parties and partisanship like no other. He was as a prophet for our nation.

Nashville, TN

@mg scott --

" It seems that when Democrats appoint liberals, they stay liberal. When Republicans appoint judges, it becomes a tossup as to where they end up politically. "

Let's see. Liberal judges stay liberal, and conservative judges become liberal.

IOW, conservative judges get "converted" to liberalism as they learn more about the Constitution, and as they gain more experience in working with it on a daily basis.

Hmmm. That might give you a clue about which side is TRULY protecting that Constitution.


Kent C. DeForrest
Provo, UT

Partisanship has always been ugly. But it reached a new low when the Republicans decided to oppose virtually everything proposed by the Democrats (particularly the president they vowed to ruin), no matter how moderate or even conservative the proposal might be.

salt lake, UT

I think twin lights has hit on the biggest reason for the polls, it is not a change in the courts it is the drifting to extremes in our politics that has lead to people viewing the courts unfavorably. I do also agree anytime the courts take up a controversial issue those with strong feelings one way or the other are going to grow more distrustful, it is just basic human nature not a sign of shifts in the courts.

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