Very, very sad day. I have made the Weekend Update a public podcast and address all the ramifications of the loss of this great man. Here is some of the coverage. I look forward to seeing your comments. Hugs to everyone.

NY Times Obit: Antonin Scalia, Justice on the Supreme Court, dies at 79

Justice Antonin Scalia, whose transformative legal theories, vivid writing and outsize personality made him a leader of a conservative intellectual renaissance in his three decades on the Supreme Court, was found dead on Saturday at a resort in West Texas, according to a statement from Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. He was 79.

“He was an extraordinary individual and jurist, admired and treasured by his colleagues,” Chief Justice Roberts said. “His passing is a great loss to the Court and the country he so loyally served.”

The cause of death was not immediately released.

Justice Scalia began his service on the court as an outsider known for caustic dissents that alienated even potential allies. But his theories, initially viewed as idiosyncratic, gradually took hold, and not only on the right and not only in the courts.

He was, Judge Richard A. Posner wrote in The New Republic in 2011, “the most influential justice of the last quarter century.” Justice Scalia was a champion of originalism, the theory of constitutional interpretation that seeks to apply the understanding of those who drafted and ratified the Constitution. In Justice Scalia’s hands, originalism generally led to outcomes that pleased political conservatives, but not always. His approach was helpful to criminal defendants in cases involving sentencing and the cross-examination of witnesses.

NRO: Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, RIP.

Sen Majority Leader Mitch McConnell statement on Facebook:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following statement Saturday on the passing of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia:

“Today our country lost an unwavering champion of a timeless document that unites each of us as Americans. Justice Scalia’s fidelity to the Constitution was rivaled only by the love of his family: his wife Maureen his nine children, and his many grandchildren. Through the sheer force of his intellect and his legendary wit, this giant of American jurisprudence almost singlehandedly revived an approach to constitutional interpretation that prioritized the text and original meaning of the Constitution. Elaine and I send our deepest condolences to the entire Scalia family.

“The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President.”

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17 Comments | Leave a comment
  1. EllSee says:

    Spouse: “Scalia died. That’s bad.”

  2. naga5 says:

    Tammy retweeted VodkaPundit who said he was the justice who could make you love reading legal decisions. Read his dissent on Obergefell v Hodges. You may not agree with his dissent but you cannot fault his logic in writing it, at least I can’t. Or read his dissent on the ACA.
    All the networks keep saying he’s Italian. It’s worse. He’s Sicilian. I tease my wife about that distinction too.
    RIP Your Honor.

  3. Maynard says:

    Listening now…just heard Tammy say of Rubio, “He’s a little bit taller than me.” Watching Tammy doing her thing, I’m always left with the impression of physical stature. But she’s actually surprisingly diminutive, so I couldn’t help but smile at the comparison. As far as the presidency goes, some pundits say it’s like that stupid grade-school game of tether-ball, in which the tall guy wins. And I guess that’s true, except when it’s not. Jeb’s the tallest boy in the race, followed by The Donald. And Marco Rubio, at 5’10”, towers over Ted Cruz by two inches. At least Cruz is taller than Tammy. Rather than wearing elevator shoes like Rubio, maybe Cruz will select Tammy has his VP as an alternative ploy to heighten his, umm, height.

  4. hektor says:

    I hope that The Jerk does not find a way to get his man (or woman) on the court before the election. I don’t see how, but I sometimes do not trust the squishy GOP to do the right thing. Just saying…

  5. sandyl says:

    Am I the only one who couldn’t help but think of foul play here? The amnesty decision is going to come down from the Supremes, and that decision could be a real problem for the election.

    On a personal note, I am very sad because Judge Scalia and Judge Thomas are the ones I admire/admired the most. Brilliant men and we have suffered a great loss today. Condolences to his family.

  6. Minnie says:

    Losing Justice Scalia is a Sad day for America . As we grieve his passing I think he would ask that the Nation honor him by electing a leader who will abide & lead by the tenets of the Constitution .

  7. Maynard says:

    CNN has posted this article, “The best lines from Antonin Scalia’s Obamacare dissent”.

    1. “This Court, however, concludes that this limitation would prevent the rest of the Act from working as well as hoped. So it re-writes the law to make tax credits available everywhere. We should start calling this law SCOTUScare.”

    2. “The Court’s next bit of interpretive jiggery-pokery involves other parts of the Act that purportedly presuppose the availability of tax credits on both federal and state Exchanges.”

    3. “Pure applesauce. Imagine that a university sends around a bulletin reminding every professor to take the “interests of graduate students” into account when setting office hours, but that some professors teach only undergraduates. Would anybody reason that the bulletin implicitly presupposes that every professor has “graduate students,” so that “graduate students” must really mean “graduate or undergraduate students”? Surely not.”

    4. “The somersaults of statutory interpretation they have performed … will be cited by litigants endlessly, to the confusion of honest jurisprudence.”

    5. “It is bad enough for a court to cross out “by the State” once. But seven times?”

    6. “The Court’s decision reflects the philosophy that judges should endure whatever interpretive distortions it takes in order to correct a supposed flaw in the statutory machinery. That philosophy ignores the American people’s decision to give Congress “[a]ll legislative Powers” enumerated in the Constitution.”

    And from Scalia’s oral dissent from the bench:

    7. “The Court solves that problem (believe it or not) by simply saying that federal exchanges count as state exchanges only (and this is a quotation from the opinion) “for purposes of the tax credits.” How wonderfully convenient and how utterly contrary to normal principles of interpretation.”

    With respect to SCOTUS imposing same-sex marriage upon the nation and ending the active social and political debate (and nullifying elections), Peggy Noonan cited Scalia:

    Justice Antonin Scalia put his criticism in populist terms. His message seemed a warning to the court. “Today’s decree says that my Ruler, and the Ruler of 320 million Americans coast-to-coast, is a majority of the nine lawyers of the Supreme Court. . . . A system of government that makes the People subordinate to a committee of nine unelected lawyers does not deserve to be called a democracy.”

    Those lawyers are “select, patrician, highly unrepresentative.” All studied law at Harvard or Yale, four are natives of New York City, eight grew up on the East or West coast, “only one hails from the vast expanse in-between.” Not a single Southwesterner, nor a genuine Westerner, not even a Protestant. The “unrepresentative character” of the court would mean nothing if its members were “functioning as judges.” But in this case they are not. This “judicial putsch,” Justice Scalia writes, is the product of “hubris”—“sometimes defined as o’erweening pride; and pride, we know, goeth before a fall.”

  8. There is no good reason I can think of to allow Obama another justice on the court. He has done enough. No lame duck appointments.

  9. midget says:

    How can the Senate stop a recess apt when a precedent has been set by
    a Republican administration? (Ike’s).
    Anyway, I can’t help thinking for us to not count Justice Scalia out,
    he is with the Almighty God and has more power now than ever before.
    “for we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses” Hebrews 12:1
    Whatever happens,including the election, it will be by God’s
    permitting will or His ordaining will.

  10. hektor says:

    I believe the Republicans have put themselves into a deep, troubling trap with not much room to escape. They have publically stated that any choice by President Obama was DOA, which gives Obama no choice but to make a recess appointment as it is his obligation to fill this vacancy. At least that would be his spin to the public when he announces his choice during recess. To be fair, had Romney won and possibly facing a Democrat controlled senate, he probably would do the same thing, especially with Harry Reid in charge.

  11. Alain41 says:

    Thank you Justice Scalia. RIP.

    I’m glad that Obama doesn’t have any more SotU speeches. He’d go off on how much the Congress ‘must act’ on his SCOTUS nomination and the media would amplify that message.

  12. Mutnodjmet says:

    I was on my way into a bar when I heard the news. I ordered a second drink. I would have ordered more, but I was driving.

    This is another example of a Black Swan, which Tammy predicted would be important for this election.

    Prayers for the comfort of Scalia’s family and the sake of our nation. We will need as many prayers as we can get in the coming days.

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