Huckabee Still Doesn’t Get Judicial Review

On Sunday, Mike Huckabee went on Fox News and Chris Wallace asked him, as he did last week with Ben Carson, about his claim that both state and federal officials are free to ignore the Supreme Court if they rule in favor of marriage equality next month. He offered up the usual gibberish:

Huckabee has said he would not follow a high court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage, a matter the Court is expected to decide on imminently.

“Judicial review is exactly what we have lived under; we have not lived under judicial supremacy,” Huckabee said. “The Supreme Court can’t make a law; the legislature has to make it, the executive has to sign it and enforce it. The notion that the Supreme Court comes up with a ruling and that automatically subjects the two other branches to following it defies everything there is to equal branches of government.”

So how do you tell when it’s “judicial review” and when it’s “judicial supremacy”? Easy. If you agree with the ruling, it’s judicial review; if you don’t, it’s judicial supremacy. Can you imagine if President Obama had responded to the Hobby Lobby ruling by saying, “The Supreme Court can’t make a law; the legislature has to make it, the executive has to sign it and enforce it. The notion that the Supreme Court comes up with a ruling and that automatically subjects the two other branches to following it defies everything there is to equal branches of government” — and then continued to enforce the contraception mandate? Huckabee’s head would have exploded as he screamed TYRANNY! DICTATORSHIP! OBAMA IS DESTROYING AMERICA! HE’S COMMITTING EXECUTIVE TERRORISM!

There is no serious argument here, it’s just special pleading — if the Supreme Court agrees with us, we must follow it. If they don’t, that’s judicial tyranny and we must refuse to follow it.

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  • eric

    Beyond the special pleading problem, Hukabee seems to forget that the SSM decision will be a review of (at least?) four different state laws. Even if we pretend the “review, not supremacy” was a real standard, this one fits right in the review lane.

  • John Pieret

    Heh … Huckadoodle asks what if the Supreme Court decided it was just going to pick the next president. Forgotten 2000 already?

    What he is forgetting (conveniently) is that, while the three branches are co-equal, all three are subject to the Constitution and that same Constitution gave the Supreme Court the duty to decide what the Constitution means. Once the Supreme Court determines what the Constitution means, the Executive and Legislative (and Judicial) branches are required to follow it … the Constitution … not the Supreme Court. Of course, there are ways to amend the Constitution but, until that’s done, all the branches of government have to follow it.

  • whheydt

    Looks like Huckabee is unclear on the difference between “making law” and “overturning law”. The latter being what courts can do.

    Actually, Huckabee is, undoubtedly quite well aware of the differences and distinctions involved. He’s just playing to his base and telling them what they want to hear…which makes him just another dissembling politician.

  • llewelly

    It is interesting that many of these right-wing characters appear quite confident the court will find in favor of marriage equality.

    Is that just their persecution complex at work, or do they understand the poverty of their arguments?

  • llewelly

    whheydt:

    … which makes him just another dissembling politician.

    Does Huckabee still qualify as a politician? As far as I know, he has spent the last eight years either using fake presidential campaigns to raise money for this friends and family, or using radio shows and email bombardment to raise money. He’s like a televangelist in politician’s clothes.

  • John Pieret

    llewelly:

    Is that just their persecution complex at work, or do they understand the poverty of their arguments?>/I>

    I’m pretty sure it is a bit of both. They dearly want the frisson of their being persecuted (without, you know, any actual persecution!) and even they have to realize that once they say gay marriage will destroy “traditional marriage,” they can’t give any reasons that might be true. The most they can say is ‘well … it might be true because … well … people might stupid enough to think marriage isn’t as important as it would be if only straight people can get married … sorta …’

    Of course, the hard-core haters may never consciously get to the second part, but they are very well practiced in not connecting the dots.

  • Childermass

    Trail of Tears II: The Sequel.

  • John Pieret

    Italics Fail … oh well …

  • John Hinkle

    Huckabee is right. Why I myself frequently ignore judicial rulings that have no effect on me whatsoever.

  • enceladus

    Heh … Huckadoodle asks what if the Supreme Court decided it was just going to pick the next president. Forgotten 2000 already?

    Bush v Gore.

    Well, let’s see. Remand back to the Florida Supreme Court with instructions they follow the Florida Election Code in force at the time the election started rather than what some parties tried to make it after the count went screwy on them.

    In a nation ruled by law and not by emotion what other order would you expect?

    Doesn’t sound like a court just picking the next president to me. But then I’m an independent. Not the Democratic Party on the losing side of a proper SCOTUS decision. The court even gets caught in the angry hyperbole of supposedly enlightened people when they lose.

  • gronank

    …and even they have to realize that once they say gay marriage will destroy “traditional marriage,” they can’t give any reasons that might be true.

    I think I have figured out the unspoken argument against SSM and they are right, SSM will destroy “traditional marriage”. You see, in their minds, traditional marriage isn’t just an institution between a man and a woman. That isn’t even the important part. The important part is that there is a man in charge and a woman who is subservient. That doesn’t work if there aren’t necessarily any women or men in the marriage implying that marriage is entered by equal partners.

    That is the real reason they’re against SSM, because it undermines the patriarchy. And they’re absolutely right which is only a reason for everyone to support SSM, which in turn is why they’re using code words like “traditional marriage” to hide what they mean.

  • felidae

    “Huckabee has said he would not follow a high court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage, a matter the Court is expected to decide on imminently.”

    I’m so relieved that Huck won’t divorce his wife and run out and marry a man as soon as the Court rules

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @whheydt

    Looks like Huckabee is unclear on the difference between “making law” and “overturning law”. The latter being what courts can do.

    This is a common misunderstanding. Your misunderstanding. US courts do regularly make law. That’s why it’s called case law. Please see:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_law

  • http://www.facebook.com/josef.mulroney Josef Mulroney

    how does someone get elected to be a state governor and run for president and have zero understanding of common law?

  • sigurd jorsalfar

    Huckabee has said he would not follow a high court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage …

    I’d also like to know what he plans to do, exactly, in order not to follow a high court ruling legalizing same-sex marrage. Is he going to refuse to bake gay wedding cakes? Stay married to his wife? Such defiance.