Once again the Supreme Court handed down decisions that people on both sides of the political divide had a visceral reaction to without really understanding how the hell the court ruled. SCOTUS handed down decisions on two different cases involving the tax returns of President Trump. Leaving the fanatics on both sides to treat it as if it were something important like a questionable pass interference call in the playoffs. Of course most observers understand the rule of law even as well as NFL officials know what a catch is. Comfortably Smug illustrates the problem pretty well right here.
What the court actually did was just punt the cases back down to the lower courts. In Vance SCOTUS ruled that the Manhattan DA does not need to have to meet a higher standard in subpoenaing the tax returns of a sitting president which was the only issue at hand here. My guess is that the President’s lawyers never expected to win this argument but were able delay any hearings on other arguments against the subpoena for almost a year while arguing this issue. Now the case will go back to lower courts where the President’s attorneys will make other arguments over the subpoenaed tax returns and we will go through the whole process again.
In Mazars the court vacated the lower court ruling stating that it did not consider separation of powers in congressional subpoenas of the President’s records.
For all intents and purposes what the Supreme Court did today was defer possession of the issue until past the election. None of this will be decided until well after November and frankly I would guess that Mazars at least will be ruled moot before it is ever decided. Both rulings are clear victories for the President, even Vance, although he is too dumb to realize it
The President’s response to Vance, really any SCOTUS decision he doesn’t like, is illustrative of a greater problem that Trump is a symptom of. Far too many people who have no idea about how the rule of law and the government in general work have taken an interest in politics and made it personal. This is why political campaigns come off more like student council elections with the candidates promising longer recess, better pizza at lunch, and an end to homework even though when they are elected they won’t have the power to do any of that. An informed electorate would know these things and would vote for informed candidates. Instead what we have is the problem of late stage democracy where everyone just wants what they want and damn the rule of law.
Civilization was a mistake