It’s been pretty much a universal article of faith in the country that Supreme Court decisions are absolutely secret until they are announced. No one knows the result, except for the justices, their clerks, and the few staff people who input the text of the decisions.
And it needs to be that way, because advance knowledge of a particular decision can be a tremendous advantage to certain individuals. To cite one obvious example, a decision involving a corporation could allow for market manipulation if the outcome were known by some in advance.
Obama’s temper tantrum on Monday against the Supreme Court was therefore quite unusual and gives one reason to think that the veil of SCOTUS secrecy has been breached.
1. Obama’s comments..viewed by some as a blatant attempt to influence the Court, are inappropriate at best, given that the Court is a separate, but equal, branch of our government.
2. Obama should know that it is highly probable that the decision has already been reached, it is only last minutes revisions to the expected multiple opinions are delaying the announcement.
3. Why say now, at the last moment, that the Court should not even have taken up the case?
Since 2000, and Bush v. Gore, Washington has become far more polarized and hyper-partisan. Many Democrats still believe that Gore won, and the Court stole the election from him. In this increasingly contested environment, it’s more likely than not, that one of the clerks, if not one of the Justices (Kagan or Sotomayor, who owe Obama everything, and who both came from very partisan careers and backgrounds) gave the White House a heads-up.
There’s really no other explanation for Obama’s outburst, other than he’s found out that he’s lost, big time.Obamacare had been repudiated by the Court, and likely by a 6-3 margin. Obama is now prepping the Democrat base for the decision.