Friday, December 28, 2012

Scalia Too Biased To Rule On Marriage Equality

From The Advocate:

...Recusal is when a judge removes herself or himself from hearing a case because of an actual or perceived conflict of interest. So why should Scalia recuse himself? The answer lies in the fact that recusal isn’t just about conflict of interest, financial or otherwise. It’s more about Scalia’s impartiality and bias. In fact, those very words are in the law regarding the Judiciary and recusal, Title 28 of the US Code:
§ 455. Disqualification of justice, judge, or magistrate judge
(a) Any justice, judge, or magistrate judge of the United States shall disqualify himself in any proceeding in which his impartiality might reasonably be questioned.
(b) He shall also disqualify himself in the following circumstances:
(1) Where he has a personal bias or prejudice concerning a party…
Recently a Princeton student posed a great question to Scalia, asking if he regretted some harsh language he employed in LGBT rights cases. Not only did he not regret the language he used, he answered with a totally repugnant (Takei’s spot-on characterization) equating of homosexuality with…wait for it…murder:
"If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality,” Scalia retorted, “can we have it against murder? Can we have it against other things? Of course we can. I don’t apologize for the things I raised.”
Of course he quickly added that he wasn’t comparing homosexuality with murder, saying that he was making a reductio ad absurdum argument. But that is precisely what he did do by the very act of using “murder” to make the argument. He doesn’t get off the hook by doing something and then saying otherwise. So what language was he referring to? And is it bias?

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