Does It Bother You That Lawyers and Judges Are Picking the President?

This might be a IMHO thread but I got yelled one time by a moderator for posting a political thread in GQ instead GD so I am not taking a another chance. If this thread needs to be moved, by all means moderators that is cool with me.

Anyway, I was thinking that really the american people are out of it of the election process and instead of flipping which would be cool me by now it comes down to faith in our legal system (you know the same one that said OJ was innocent.) :rolleyes: So anyway now it is game to see who has got the best hired gun lawyer(the supreme spin doctors on our planet) and judges (that were once lawyers) that are now not accountable to anybody because they are appointed for life.

Anyway does this anybody else but me that the next four years of our countries history is going to based on what lawyers and judges decide for us?

I really need to proof read. I am going to rewrite that last sentence.

Anyway does this bother anybody else but me that the next four years of American History is going to be decided by lawyers and judges instead of us?

Bill, I hate to break it to you, but lawyers and judges do not make laws, they interpret them. Lawyers are paid advocates for a client, no more. Since Marbury vs. Madison establised the doctrine of judicial review, the Supreme Court has been the final authroity on the constitutionality of laws and decisions handed up from lower courts. In this case, the Supremes are to decide if the Florida Supreme Court was correct in ordering a manual hand recount of ballots. Since you are a rabid right-winger and the Court these days is conservative and will rule against the hand recount, you should be happy.

In other words, are we troubled that rule of law (and obviously some degree of partisanship) is deciding the election rather than having riots in the streets? Or a military coup?

For me, the answer is “No.”

Fenris

Bill,

I suspect you have a poor understanding of what it is these “hired guns” and “spin-doctors” are arguing. They are trying very hard to determine whether the people were permitted to elect their candidate of choice or not. It may well be that the “hired guns” in Florida have already selected a set of electors that is different from the set chosen by the people. If that is the case, or if there is a good chance that that is the case, something must be done. The courts must ensure that the voice of the people has been heard and that their intentions have not been misinterpreted or forged by any “hired guns”.

To answer your question directly: No. I am not in disturbed in the least.

*Originally posted by goboy *

Reaaalllyyy? This may be true but they can interpret them anyway they see fit. And the Florida Supreme court can even make laws. :wink:

But if they are good enough, they can get bend the hell out of the law to suit their neeed. And what I was saying is that it is out of the hands of the general public and in the hands of experts in manipulating the system.

This doesn’t necessarily mean they are right all the time now does it?

Are you suggesting, Bill, that we take your interpretation of law over that of the Supreme Court?

Actually Bill, let’s try this the other way 'round.

You don’t want the courts and lawyers involved. Presumably you don’t want the legislature involved either (your “instead of us” comment).

How would you prefer this to be resolved? Please be detailed when you describe your preferred system. I’m curious.

Fenris

WB: And what I was saying is that it is out of the hands of the general public and in the hands of experts in manipulating the system.

Well, it started out in the hands of the general public, and the general public not only split the vote so evenly that the margin of victory was smaller than the margin of error, but committed all sorts of goofups both in voting and in running the voting process, some of which are alleged to be so serious that they’re tantamount to illegal deprivation of voting rights.

I.e., we the general public had our chance at making this decision, and through various combinations of bad luck, bad judgement, bad management, and possibly some deliberate fraud, did not succeed in doing so conclusively. That can happen. Which is why we have laws to determine the fallback procedure in such cases, lawyers to advocate the different positions of suitors who disagree about the situation, and judges to resolve the disagreements.

If you’re really concerned about this, my recommendation would be to push for a more consistent and reliable process for obtaining the popular votes (which will probably have to be at least partially funded at the national level), so the general public will be less likely to create such stalemates and have the decision taken out of their hands.

And I join the other posters here in asking what you’d suggest putting in the place of the judicial review process, if you distrust it so much. Popular insurrection? Military coup? Statewide or nationwide repeat of the whole election? Investigation by U.N. observers? All of those seem to me to have a whole lot more bother potential than an orderly (if complicated and tedious) judicial settlement.

And one last word: Lawyers and judges are deciding crucial matters about “the next four years [or ten, or fifty] of our country’s history” all the time. Determining the outcome of a tied Presidential election is probably nowhere near the most significant aspect of current public policy that will be settled judicially. After all, the judiciary is built into our system of governance by the Constitution as one of three equal and mutually regulatory branches of government. Sorry if that bothers you.

I suggest they Bush and Gore fight it out. We’ll see who wants to be President. :wink: If they don’t want to fight, flip a coin I trust luck more than I do the system.

I guess that the thing that bothers me the most was the supreme courts latest order to stop the vote counting. Even though it might not have been necessary just counting them certainly could not be illegal. They voted to not accept the new information. They could have voted to keep on counting but don’t tell the results unless they needed that info.I thought that they would have wanted all the facts.
Geo Bush certainly would be better off if they counted them.
His presedency will forever be tarnished by the 1500 or so votes that were counted when the adresses were put on republican ballots when democrat ballots were discarded.

Well, I’d certainly prefer a revote of Florida; that would put this thing back in the hands of the people. (And ship them some better voting machines from out of state this time!) Unfortunately, that gets back into the fairness v. letter-of-law dichotomy that Dems and GOPers tend to fall on opposite sides of. Such a solution would be ‘fair’ by any reasonable standard - certainly fairer than all this legal wrangling - but it would be ‘rewriting the rules after the election’ on a scale far beyond anything the FL Supremes are accused of.

Barring that, I’d rather see this election in the hands of the statisticians, but that would also involve an after-the-fact rule change of enormous proportions. But at least, in discerning the will of the people of FL on 11/7, we can work with evidence that a judge would have to reject - evidence that I feel would be definitive in this case.

So if you don’t want to change the rules in midstream, we’re left with the lawyers and judges, arguing over which ballots really qualify as votes, and which don’t. Because them’s the rules.

**Wildest Bill wrote:

So anyway now it is game to see who has got the best hired gun lawyer(the supreme spin doctors on our planet) and judges (that were once lawyers) that are now not accountable to anybody because they are appointed for life.**

Not exactly, true, WB. Judges, on the local level run for office. On the state and federal level, they are appointed. Yes, the judges are fairly independent, that way, if they hand down a decision that’s unpopular with the current administration, they don’t have to worry about losing their job. They can make rulings and interpretations independent of the current political climate.

If a judge does abuse their power, he/she can be impeached. Several federal judges have been impeached in a process similar to presidential impeachment. They’re not the loose cannons you make them out to be.

I’m not sure what to think about the OP here. We, the voters, elected the legislatures to represent us, no? We elect judges too. These judges are nominated and confirmed to the Supreme Court by our elected representatives. That they are “now not accountable to anybody because they are appointed for life,” is a very good thing. It is infinitely preferable to somebody making a decision based on party loyalty or a look at one’s next campaign. Although it sounds like you think that the judicial system is somehow usurping the will of the people, it is we who gave them the job of overseeing complex legal issues such as this. It’s what they are for.

Freyr,

I appreciate the info that you listed on about these judges but I still feel that they would never be free from bias of some sort.

Ptahlis,

I am not sure what guy you are root’n for. But seems like it would be better since it was so close to let the Legislature vote on who to give its 25 votes to. Afterall didn’t the people of Florida vote for these people in the legislature they sure as hell didn’t vote for the Justices of the Florida Supreme court.

And you people call me a one-trick pony? :rolleyes:

Esprix, unimpressed

Wildest Bill: I appreciate the info that you listed on about these judges but I still feel that they would never be free from bias of some sort.

And you think legislators, on the other hand, are free from partisan bias?!

*But seems like it would be better since it was so close to let the Legislature vote on who to give its 25 votes to. Afterall didn’t the people of Florida vote for these people in the legislature they sure as hell didn’t vote for the Justices of the Florida Supreme court. *

Wrong as usual, Bill old boy. The justices are not initially chosen directly by the voters (but they are selected from a list of candidates by the popularly-elected Governor), but when their terms expire they can be retained on the Court only by a popular “merit retention vote.” From the Florida court system website:

So yes, the people of Florida do get to vote for their Supreme Court justices. Honestly, Bill, do you ever attempt to obtain any factual information about the myriad things you complain about before you do the complaining? Just curious.

Actually, it makes me want to hop in my car, drive to wherever you live, find your place of work, find your office, and leap across your desk to yell “HA!!!” right in your face.

Not everybody, mind you; just you.

At least I don’t list in my signature.

The Loser in a Lawsuit Should Pay Period 1, The Loser in a Lawsuit Should Pay Period II and the Loser in Lawsuit Should Pay Period III.

So no you are still King or should I say Queen :wink: of the One Trick Pony Show.

And I just you to know that my whole day is ruined becuase you are not impressed. Oh, how will I sleep tonight. :rolleyes:

By my count, at least two of the seven sitting justices on SCOFL are currently retained on the Court by popular vote, and several others were recently appointed to the Court after serving in lower courts where they were retained by popular vote.

Note also that until a couple decades ago, the justices (and all other judges in Florida) were popularly elected, and Floridians amended the Constitution to reform the system because the costs of campaigning created too many opportunities for judges to be bought. Like legislators, as a matter of fact.