The Supreme Court is, in theory, supposed to be beyond legislative threats. After all, the justices receive lifetime appointments for a reason. The idea is for them to be above the political fray and simply be able to focus on justice. Not having to conform to the whims of Congress or the electorate should, in theory, keep them able to do so.
Recently, a group of Democratic lawmakers opted to threaten the Court anyway. The legislators threatened to pack the court once they were back in power with enough judges to swing the Court liberal if they opted to hear a certain case. “It’s a nice court you have here. It would be a shame if something happened to it,” in short.
Now, a complaint has been filed regarding the ringleader of the group.
Monday, Judicial Watch filed a complaint with the Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee of Rhode Island’s Supreme Court against Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, alleging he engaged in the unauthorized practice of law.
The complaint alleges “Whitehouse filed a brief with U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of four clients while maintaining inactive status and that the brief was nothing more than an attack on the federal judiciary and an open threat to the U.S. Supreme Court.“
Now, it may seem petty, but it’s not. Not really. While he could easily have written the brief for himself without much of an issue, if he did indeed take on clients–and those who signed on with him could certainly be considered clients–then it’s a whole different ballgame.
Besides, this is the same guy who questioned Brett Kavanaugh about a damn fart joke from high school. That was petty.
Remember that this all stems around the case before the Court regarding a New York City regulation that barred people from taking firearms out of the city. While NYC changed the rule, that doesn’t kill the case. Not necessarily, anyway.
While the city has argued it does, so far there’s been no indication by the Court that they’re inclined to accept that reasoning. Besides which, we all understand that without the Court ruling on it, they’re free to put the rule back in place, thus necessitating yet another lawsuit traveling up the same legal channels.
So, I suspect the Court will hear the case.
Yet Whitehouse and company wanted to threaten the Court to prevent that from happening.
Keep in mind, this is a very narrow law that should the Court rule on is unlikely to create ripples across the nation. The Court has a history of narrow rulings anyway, and there’s little to suggest they’d suddenly decide to rule any and all gun control is null and void, much as I’d love to see it. Instead, they’d likely rule this particular law unconstitutional but since laws barring the transportation of firearms within a city or state are pretty much non-existent anywhere, there’s a lot of consternation about this case for no good reason.
So why is Whitehouse threatening the Court?
That’s a good question. Another good question is the one raised by Judicial Watch: Is Whitehouse practicing law without a current license? If so, then maybe that’s grounds for the amicus to be rejected all on its own? Regardless, Whitehouse does appear to have practiced law inappropriately. Judicial Watch has called for an investigation into Whitehouse’s actions, and I want to echo that call.