Thank goodness for the constitutional scholars at Fox News. After the Supreme Court announced they would rule on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, Fox immediately seized on an obscure provision of the U.S. Constitution that would require "liberal" Justice Elena Kagan to recuse herself.
So obscure, in fact, it doesn't even exist…
Fox national correspondent Steve Centanni said Kagan's recusal may be required by "Article 28 of the Constitution." Fox's graphics department provided the relevant quote from the "U.S. Constitution, Article 28, Sec. 144"
Three glaring problems with this argument: The Constitution has no Article 28, has no Section 144, and does not contain the language quoted.
The Constitution actually contains seven articles, none of which have more than 10 sections. It also has 27 amendments, none of which contain anywhere near 144 sections.
The language Fox quoted from actually comes from a statute passed by Congress, Title 28 of the U.S. Code, Section 455. But that's the very statute legal ethicists have analyzed in finding that Kagan does not need to recuse herself because of the email.
Don’t blame Fox. They were just exercising their First Amendment right to not understand the Constitution. Or do anything resembling research.
As it says in Article 5493Q, Section Ke$ha, if you want something to be in the Constitution, just pretend it is. Like The Secret, but for our nation's fundamental laws and principles.
After all, it’s what our Founding Fathers Bill Cosby and Archie Bunker would have wanted.
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Constitution, Elena Kagan, Fox, Health Care, Judiciary, Supreme Court
The most famous softball-playing non-lesbian female Supreme Court Justice has made The Onion's list of People Who Mattered in 2010…
When she became the fourth woman to join the highest court in the land last August, it was a significant moment in American history. But for newly minted Supreme Court justice Elena Kagan, it meant something so much more: a steady paycheck.
And you have no idea how bad she needed it.
Before Barack Obama nominated her to be the court's 112th justice, Kagan was having some pretty serious cash-flow issues. It's not like she was homeless, but the former solicitor general wasn't exactly living on Easy Street, either. The fact is, Elena Kagan's degrees from Princeton, Oxford, and Harvard didn't keep her from eating lentils and day-old muffins on a regular basis, but, hey, sometimes you have to do what you have to do—and now, for Kagan, that means interpreting the Constitution and starting to pay off some of those credit card bills.
Onion Sportsdome airs Tuesdays at 10:30 pm / 9:30 c on Comedy Central, starting January 11.
Tags: Elena Kagan, Onion Sportsdome, Supreme Court, The Onion
Good day, patriots! 'Tis I, Sara Benincasa, your Comedy Central Indecision Delegate, here to further enlighten you with important facts about the fabulous government of our great nation. Today we turn our insightful gaze on the Supreme Court. I'm awash in that legendary post-midterm elections glow, as are you. But we must focus! FOCUS! On the Supreme Court!
"Oh, yes!" you are probably saying. "The Supreme Court. Which of the Supreme Courtesans were up for reelection this year? And is it true that Rand Paul ran for Chief Justice?" These are all reasonable and intelligent questions, and I applaud you for asking them. However, it is my duty to burst your shiny bubble and inform you that, alas, Supreme Court justices are appointed rather than elected.
"Appointed?" you scoff. "I don't recall being asked for my opinion on Alito or Scalia or those two ladies or the other guys."
Well, gentle reader, that is because you are not actually the person who appoints Supreme Court justices. I know it seems unfair, and I do encourage you to send a letter to your congressman complaining about this injustice. But the fact is, he can't do much about it, either. That's because the power to appoint Supreme Court justices rests mostly with the President. Howevsies, the Senate does get to weigh in, and bitchy senators have worked their butts off in the past to successfully block certain nominations. This is because every U.S. Senator is, at heart, a nasty sorority girl.
The Supreme Court consists of nine humans: eight associate justices and one Chief Justice. Right now, the Chief Justice is John G. Roberts, Jr. (he's the one who got all confused with Barack Obama at the swearing-in ceremony, prompting a do-over.) They all decide important stuff, like whether pooping on the flag is constitutional, or something.
Alrighty-roo, that's really all you need to know about the Supreme Court. You can go read the decision on Plessy v. Ferguson if you really want to, but I encourage you to sit on your couch and forget everything you just learned here, because you will probably never need to use it. (Unless you actually become a Supreme Court justice one day. Which is totally very likely.)
Tags: Antonin Scalia, Cramming for Midterms, Elena Kagan, John Roberts, Midterms, Samuel Alito, Sara Benincasa, Sonia Sotomayor, Supreme Court