Supreme Court Essay

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Justice Antonin Scalia's philosophy and contributions to the US Supreme Court, and the effect of his demise on the Court, particularly on Amendments IV, V, VI and VIII.

Philosophy and Impact of the Death of Scalia

Owing to Justice Scalia's disruptive nature, a number of impolite social media posts, op-eds and tweets are expected from parties who were usually not in agreement with his philosophy. Despite the presence of other "conservative" Justices, Antonin Scalia's aggressive and frequently insulting views either infuriated the opposition or made individuals who agreed with him feel immensely superior and triumphant. I personally believe he can be rightfully counted among the best orators in American history and also the best writer ever among Supreme Court Justices. With respect to the Court's future, numerous diverse responses on the part of politicians are to be expected in the near future (Burrus, 2016). My hope and prediction is that a number of individuals who opposed his philosophy will accord him the regard he rightfully deserves, which will, possibly more than any other thing, prove his continuing legacy. Viewed objectively, Scalia definitely ranks among the nation's greatest justices. His flamboyant wittiness and powerful reasoning made him the strongest and most prominent supporter of the constitutional interpretation theory of originalism, which was scorned at the time Scalia was first appointed by Reagan, but has now assumed 'mainstream' status in the minds of conservatives as well as liberals. His notions will indisputably continue to be debated among legal circles even a century from now, just like Joseph Story, Learned Hand and Oliver Wendell Holmes Junior are (Burrus, 2016).
When visiting California, President Obama hailed Scalia's larger-than-life role at the Court, his sharp intellect and his profoundly-persuasive and marvelous legal brain. The Justice's death sparked an instant, heated political battle within the Congress. While the Democratic Party called for the immediate nomination of another individual instead of leaving his post vacant for the succeeding President to appoint, important Republicans (presidential candidates, Mitch McConnell (the upper house's majority leader) and others) demanded the opposite. A well-informed spokesperson closely linked to the Obama government even anonymously imparted a list of the prospective candidates shortlisted by Obama (Knox, 2016), including DC circuit appellate court judge Sri Srinivasan; Georgetown professor of law, Neal Katyal, who worked for a year as acting solicitor general to Obama; DC circuit appellate court's Chief Judge, Merrick Garland; Loretta Lynch, Attorney General; Don Verrilli, the Solicitor General who is a favorite of Obama's government for his persistent defense of Obamacare at the Court; Eric Holder, ex- Attorney General; and Jeh Johnson, Secretary of Homeland Security.

4th, 5th, 6th, and 8th Amendments Impacted

Scalia's relatively civil-libertarian view of Amendment IV left several observers astonished. On particular matters, the Justice backed distinct rules in favor of law enforcement (e.g., the unbiased test for justifying a stop). But with regard to defining fairness and searches, Scalia's formalism and originalism philosophies ensured….....

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Burrus, T. (2016, February 13). RIP: Was Justice Scalia the Last Great Supreme Court Justice? Retrieved February 02, 2017, from

Knox, O. (2016, February 13). Supreme Court Justice Scalia dies. Retrieved February 02, 2017, from

Slattery, E., Bibas, S., Blackman, J., & Garnett, R. (2016). Conservative Policy Research and Analysis. The Legacy of Justice Antonin Scalia: Remembering a Conservative Legal Titan's Impact on the Law. Retrieved February 2, 2017, from

(1994). The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. Scalia - Fifth Amendment 'Clearly Permits the Death Penalty' - Retrieved February 2, 2017, from
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