Texas Rangers declared champions
WASHINGTON – Less than one year after the United States Supreme Court handed down a ruling that settled the 2000 presidential election, another 5-4 split has decided the World Series.
In a majority opinion authored by Justice Antonin Scalia, the high court dismissed arguments brought by lawyers for Major League Baseball who said the Supreme Court had no jurisdiction to choose a winner in the 7-game series.
The case began when President George W. Bush issued an emergency order halting the seventh game of the series as it entered its 11th inning, with the Arizona Diamondbacks and New York Yankees locked in a 2-2 tie.
Since both teams had won three games during the series, the final game would have decided the championship. League attornies noted that the rules of the game call for play to continue until the deciding run is scored.
“It’s time the American people learn who’s won,” said Bush as he exercised a little-known executive power to force baseball players to go on strike. Bush’s order claimed that since he threw out the first pitch of Game 3, that technically made him a member of the players’ union.
Solicitor General Theodore Olson, who less than twelve months earlier had successfully convinced the justices to intervene in the presidential vote recount in Florida, presented Bush’s case to the high court once again. The majority opinion released today quotes heavily from Olson’s oral argument, which consisted entirely of the statement: “Are we going to let this go on forever, or what?”
Immediately after the ruling was issued, Major League officials protested the decision that granted the win to the Texas Rangers. Commissioner Bud Selig noted that the Rangers were not even playing in the series.
The dissenting opinion, written by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, questions the majority’s decision, calling it “unorthodox.” Ginsburg warns that the ruling could set a precedent for deciding other championships. However, Ginsburg adds, she doesn’t know that much about baseball.
Scalia’s written opinion includes an unusually candid footnote disavowing any knowledge of President Bush’s former dealings with the Texas Rangers as managing partner from 1989-1994. Scalia claims he was not personally aware of the connection before Bush met privately with him yesterday.