After the Supreme Court temporarily reinstated a rule that limits states’ powers to block energy projects, several reporters now call for President Joe Biden to simply ignore the high court and proceed at will.
In a 5-4 decision this week, the court temporarily reinstated the rule implemented under former President Trump intended to fast-track energy projects around state objections. An October ruling by a lower court vacated the 2020 rule while appeals were made by its opponents to the Supreme Court. The application to temporarily revive the rule was made on the court’s emergency docket, sometimes called the “shadow docket” — due to cases receiving minimal briefing with no oral arguments.
Despite increasing criticism from the left over the practice, Justice Samuel Alito has staunchly defended the emergency docket practice. Due to complications and time constraints around certain issues, Alito said justices do “the best we can” with emergency requests. He further condemned the criticism as misguided and emphasized that emergency applications to the high court are “absolutely nothing new.”
Politico contributing editor Joshua Zeitz said the Biden administration should brush off so-called shadow docket decisions and let the Supreme Court choose to “erode its own authority.” Zeitz also argued that former President Obama should have treated the Senate’s inaction on judicial confirmations, including the Garland nomination to the Supreme Court, as “implied consent” and declared Garland to be confirmed.
Having President Biden attempt to work around Supreme Court rulings is hardly without precedent. The president in January called for states and private employers to continue requiring vaccinations against COVID-19. This despite a 6-3 ruling that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s mandate could not be enforced.
Setting fire to the Constitution is hardly a new concept when the left doesn’t like a ruling, similar to the way Democrats push to expand the court now that it does not rubber-stamp their agenda. These knee-jerk reactions are alarmingly short-sighted and leave the republic wide open for whiplash-inducing reversals of policy whenever there is a change in the majority — like the one we are likely to see come November.