June 12th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
6 years ago

Blitzer: Next president will dictate court's future

The next president will have a big impact on the direction of the Supreme Court.
The next president will have a big impact on the direction of the Supreme Court.

(CNN) - The latest five-to-four decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on the status of terror suspects at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba once again underscores the deeply divided nature of the court and the huge stakes in the presidential election.

The court broke up largely along the liberal-conservative makeup – with the traditional swing voter, Justice Anthony Kennedy, once again breaking the tie.

In the majority were the liberals – Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, David Souter and John Paul Stevens.

In the minority were Chief Justice John Roberts, and Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas.

The next president of the United States probably will be in a position to nominate at least one and maybe more Justices. John McCain says he would nominate conservatives like Roberts and Alito; Barack Obama says he prefers liberals like Ginsburg and Breyer.

So just as there are stark differences between the two candidates on foreign and domestic policy, there are also stark differences on the future of the Supreme Court. And placing new justices on the court will have an impact for a lot more than just four or eight years. It’s something to think about during this political season.


Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (177 Responses)
  1. Gianni

    Could someone please teach Bill Scjneider how to write perfect english?I doubt if there are amees who can speak or write perfect english.

    June 12, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  2. Pepou

    I hope Hillary will be appointed to the Supreme court.

    June 12, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  3. NO MCCAIN

    NO MORE CORRUPTION OR A PRESINDENCY THAT GETS AWAY WITH ANYTHING. PLEASE VOTE DEMOCRATIC IN NOVEMBER. VOTE POLICIES NOT THE COLOR OF ANYONE'S SKIN!

    June 12, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  4. Herman in LA

    Yep go ahead and vote for McCain and really set woman back another 100 years. So all of you angry Hillary supporters out there don't be fooled your wives and daughters future is at stake more so than voting because of someone who is black.

    No McCain.

    June 12, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  5. Shawn

    I worry for the future of this country when not even the Supreme Court is above partisan politics. Our founding fathers would revolt against this government.

    June 12, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  6. Jack

    John Roberts, and Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas are examples of the worst "activists" judges ever appointed to the Supreme Court.

    We should have every one of them impeached for incompetence.

    June 12, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  7. Hill Supporter

    The Democrats have been using the selection of a U.S. Supreme Court justice as their fear-mongering mantra ever since Roe V Wade became law. DNC should have thought about this when they stole the election away from Hillary. I and everyone knows what John McCain's position is on abortion. Do you really think that he can turn this around in 4 years; I doubt that. And I'm willing to take a chance.

    June 12, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  8. CC

    If Senator McCain is elected, say good-bye to women's rights and numerous other rights for hardworking, middle Americans. Democrats, don't be blindly swayed by the double-talking, power hungry republicans. For the majority of Americans, there is too much at stake in this election than to allow a republican another stint in the WH.

    Obama 08!

    June 12, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  9. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Everyone knows that the Senate won't confrim a nominee to the court that wants to overturn R v. W, so stop the fear mongering already. I'd rather not have a court that sides with terrorists like the current one just did.

    For aliou, if Obama is discarding all the key people in his life to get elected, what does that tell you about his character? It's not the media or conservatives fault if he hasn't the courage to stick to his convictions.

    Steve, name a right you have lost in the last 7 years? You can't because you haven't lost any. More Democratic fear mongering.

    June 12, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  10. CLINTON 08 VP

    TO "R.I.F", I DON'T THINK YOU'RE BEING OBJECTIVE ABOUT "if not Hillary, then McCain", I A CLINTON SUPPORTER WAS ALSO AGAINST OBAMA ABOUT HIM GETTING THE NOMINATION BUT MY SYMPATHY DOESN'T GO TO THE LIMIT BY NOW REJECTING OBAMA AND GIVING MY VOTE TO MCCAIN ("BUSH #2") JUST BECAUSE CLINTON DIDN'T GET THE NOMINATION, NOW MY VOTE WILL GO TO OBAMA AND I AM CONFIDENT THAT HE IS GOING TO CHOSE CLINTON FOR THE VP (HE BETTER...)

    June 12, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  11. Down with Obama

    Rep. Travis Childers (D-MS), on left, and Rep. Heath Shuler (D-NC), on right, won't back Barack Obama.
    More bad news for hope and change.
    2 more Moderate Democrats bail on Obama.
    The Politico reported:

    OBAMA'S SHIP IS SINKING!!!!!!!!!

    June 12, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  12. ryan

    Thanks, Wolf, for that entirely obvious and unnecessary post. Very insightful. Duh.

    June 12, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  13. OBAMA FOR PRESIDENT

    Women Will Never Vote For Someone Who Will Take Away Their Basic God Given Right! The Right To Choose!

    June 12, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  14. Texas Trail Dog

    Lord Knows what OBAMA will put on the Supreme Court. If that doesn't scare people then stand by and watch the gates to the penal institutions swing open and all the AAs especially the ones on death row to walk out to start their raping of white and robbing and killing. I am sick of the NAME OBAMA>

    June 12, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  15. KD

    This issue is probably the ONLY reason why I'll vote for Obama.

    I most definately think the next President will elect 2, if not 3, Supreme Court Justices; an me thinks those that are liberal are the ones to be replaced.

    God help us when that happens.

    June 12, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  16. Damian Salter

    For the love of God, NOT McCain!

    June 12, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  17. STILL BROKE~

    Clinton would make an outstanding sc justice. But I doubt the republicans would approve her nomination, after this election I am not sure the dems would either. Bias Bias Bias. I wish I was like michelle obama and could say for once in my life i am proud of my country. But not today. Not proud today.

    June 12, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  18. OBAMA FOR PRESIDENT

    NEW MCCAIN SLOGAN * A SETBACK IN WOMENS RIGHTS YOU CAN BELIEVE IN! *

    June 12, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  19. George--FL

    While I agree with the Court's decision, I think there needs to be a Constitutional Amendment to determine how Supreme Court justices are seated and how they maintain their seats. This presidential selection process has time and time again proven to be an ineffective way of selecting officials who will carry out BLIND JUSTICE. Their life appointment is SUPPOSED to make them objective in their decision-making because their jobs are never at stake. But the president only selects jurists who he believes will carry out HIS policies - not necessarily who will be just or fair. The process of selecting our SC justices must change.

    June 12, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  20. LB

    If women lose this right now by voting for McCain and making him President, we'll never is another women run for the office or get elected. It will set us back in time 50 years. Obama will fight for women's rights because Michelle will see to it and also because he has two young daughters who's future he will also be fighting for.

    June 12, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  21. Mc Cain Dem

    At least we won't have Sharia law.
    We fought for our rights and we will not give them away!
    Osama, sorry Obama please tell me something new, like your experience, who you are. I know what Bush did, I know what this Washington has done. What I have no idea of is what change will you and all your great buddies do ????

    June 12, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  22. Catty

    Throw Roe vs. Wade out the window! You libs are obssessed with the killings in Iraq, yet MILLIONS of unborn lives are murdered every year. It's not about a womens rigth to choose, it's about a humans right to live.

    We need more conservatism in washington...not the socialist, Marxist tendencies of obama.

    June 12, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  23. OBAMA FOR PRESIDENT

    NEW MCCAIN SLOGAN * A GREAT DEPRESSION YOU CAN BELIEVE IN! *

    June 12, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  24. Mikey

    Aware: You right wing yo-yos are still trying to paint Obama as an "extreme left-wing liberal". Apparently, you have not listened to him, read his book, or read his policy statements. There is absolutely nothing extreme about his positions. I know, you're just following the same election playbook that you have been using since the Reagan days. Give it up – it's old, tired and a pack of lies to boot.

    As far as McCain being in touch with the American mainstream. Based on his statements and actions, he's about as out of touch as they come. Further, his becoming a champion flip-flopper:

    – voted with Bush 90+% of the time and now wants us to believe he is actually very different
    – promised only to appoint conservative judges out of one side of his mouth, while promising a moderate, bipartisan approach out of the other side of his mouth (don't believe it – maverick equals unpredictable, not moderate)
    – has not voted in favor of even one piece environmental legislation since 2005 and now claims to be an environmentalist
    – said the Bush tax cuts bothered his conscience and now wants to make the permanent
    – is arguing against an Obama tax increase that is a creation of his own staff – and not Obama's real tax plan
    – says foreign policy is his big forte and then makes one Shiite/Sunni, Iraq/Iran, and Czechoslovakia gaff after another
    – says he hates war, but is clearly against liberal use of diplomacy to prevent it – is still in the "axis of evil" neo-con mode where we needlessly create adversarial relationships with other nations
    – is trying to paint Obama as a weak tax-and-spend liberal, when Obama's policies do not support that claim – same as in 2000 and 2004 and look where that got us

    June 12, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  25. Dan, TX

    Aliou.
    Obama can not beat the media or the republicans, but WE CAN.

    It is time for Americans to stand up for themselves and take responsibility for their own actions as citizens. It's OUR responsibility to find employment or start a business to take care of our families, it is OUR responsibility to make sure our children get a decent education, it is OUR responsibility to end the war in Iraq, it is OUR responsibility to make sure affordable healthcare is available and it is OUR responsibility to elect BARACK OBAMA to make sure we have a real leader who will implement OUR will.

    June 12, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
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