There has been another big, Democratic win out of the Supreme Court today concerning an overtly-vague “crime of violence” gun law.
Justice Neil Gorsuch, who wrote the majority opinion on the 5-4 ruling, was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan, all of whom are liberal judges (Gorsuch is not).
This news will likely have Donald Trump blow a gasket, as Gorsuch was one of his conservative Supreme Court nominees in 2017. This win is in addition to other Democratic triumphs that have happened recently in the Supreme Court.
If the desciption of “crime of violence” seems to broad and vague, you are not alone. In a case involving two men convicted on several felony robbery charges and also charged under another federal statute that requires a significant mandatory sentence for “crimes of violence,” the charged men argued that the law is too vague. Even though the Justices were split on their decision, the men were sided with in the end.
Brett Kavanaugh, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts all dissented.
The two men implicated in the case, Maurice Davis and Andre Glover, are facing jailtime of a combined 91 years; Davis receiving 50 years and Glover sentenced to 41 years.
On the vague description of “crime of violence,” Gorsuch stated:
‘In our constitutional order, a vague law is no law at all. Only the people’s elected representatives in Congress have the power to write new federal criminal laws. And when Congress exercises that power, it has to write statutes that given ordinary people fair warning about what the law demands of them. Vague laws transgress both of those constitutional requirements.’
Furthermore, he added that if the Justices were to side with the government in this case, “we would be effectively stepping outside our role as judges and writing a new law rather than applying the one Congress adopted.”
Beer-liker Kavanaugh stated:
‘A decision to strike down a 33-year-old, often-prosecuted federal criminal law because it is all of a sudden unconstitutionally vague is an extraordinary event in this court. As this court has explained multiple times, criminal laws that apply a risk standards to a defendant’s conduct are not too vague, but instead are perfectly constitutional.’
Sure buddy. America still dislikes you, as you shall remain a disgraced stain throughout the duration of your career.
Featured image via Youtube screenshot.