I'm getting very annoyed with idiots sounding off about Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch for voting against what they see as Trump administration priorities concerning immigration. I've seen blog posts and other ideologically-blinkered ramblings denouncing him as a "traitor", or something similar. For those not familiar with the news report, here's one version. I've underlined the key sentence.
The Supreme Court said Tuesday that part of a federal law that makes it easier to deport immigrants who have been convicted of crimes is too vague to be enforced.
The court's 5-4 decision — an unusual alignment in which new Justice Neil Gorsuch joined the four liberal justices — concerns a catchall provision of immigration law that defines what makes a crime violent. Conviction for a crime of violence makes deportation "a virtual certainty" for an immigrant, no matter how long he has lived in the United States, Justice Elena Kagan wrote in her opinion for the court.
The decision is a loss for President Donald Trump's administration, which has emphasized stricter enforcement of immigration law. In this case, President Barack Obama's administration took the same position in the Supreme Court in defense of the challenged provision.
With the four other conservative justices in dissent, it was the vote of the Trump appointee that was decisive in striking down the provision at issue. Gorsuch did not join all of Kagan's opinion, but he agreed with her that the law could not be left in place. Gorsuch wrote that "no one should be surprised that the Constitution looks unkindly on any law so vague that reasonable people cannot understand its terms and judges do not know where to begin in applying it."
There's more at the link.
I have no idea why people are complaining that Justice Gorsuch is a "traitor" to President Trump for ruling as he did. On the contrary - he did exactly what he was appointed to do. He ruled according to the Constitution and laws of the United States. What's more, he's absolutely correct. If we can't understand a law, and if judges can't figure out how to apply it, then why the hell is it a law in the first place?
Justice Gorsuch wasn't partisan and he wasn't a traitor. I wish we had more judges like him, not putting partisan politics ahead of their job of administering the law as it is written and according to what it plainly says and means. He ruled that, in this case, since the law was not clear about what it meant, it was constitutionally invalid. What would critics rather he had done - judicially modified the law by ruling according to his personal convictions and philosophies? Isn't that what we complain about in so many other judges? By ruling as he did, he demonstrated clearly the problem with this particular law as passed by Congress. In doing so, the ball has been passed back to the legislative branch of government, which now has an opportunity to write, debate and pass a more logical, rational, easily understandable law that will accomplish what it intended in the first place. That's precisely how our system of government is supposed to work.
Thank you, Mr. Justice Gorsuch. You did your job, and I'm grateful. Long may you continue to do so!