LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – Liberals fear him. Conservatives distrust him. But all eyes will be on Justice Anthony Kennedy as the US Supreme Court opens its 2007-08 term with some major cases that appear headed for deadlock.
It is called the Supreme Court, but this year in key cases the institution might just as well be called the supreme realm of Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Such is the power of the centrist swing voter among eight other justices who often split 4 to 4 on the most contentious disputes in the nation. After nearly two decades on the high court, Justice Kennedy has never been more important and powerful, and – in the view of some – dangerous.
Liberals fear him. Conservatives distrust him. But all eyes will be on Kennedy as the court opens its 2007-08 term Monday with a string of major cases on the horizon that appear headed for 4-to-4 deadlocks.
Among them is a dispute over gun rights in Washington, D.C., a battle over the legal rights of terror suspects at the Guantánamo detention center, and a challenge to the president’s power to order state judges to uphold international court rulings.