Supreme Court: No review of Obama eligibility

Generally the orders coming out of Friday conferences at the Supreme Court issue the following Monday. So, for Obama critics and dedicated Obama haters, there is still some hope that the Supreme Court might answer part of their wildest dreams. But it doesn’t look good for them.

[Saturday night update: Donofrio’s blog acknowledges the orders don’t include his case. He’s holding out for Monday. Technically, he’s right — the orders usually would issue Monday. But if Friday’s orders issued from Friday’s conference, it doesn’t speak well of the chances that an age discrimination case took precedence over a case challenging the election still in process. We won’t know for sure, until Monday.]

[Monday morning update, December 8: It’s official. Donofrio’s case was not accepted for a hearing. As the Washington Post noted, there are other pending cases, but nothing likely to be acted on soon. I’ve noted in other posts, I think it unlikely any of the cases has a signficant chance of success.]

No order issued from the Supreme Court to further discuss the appeal of the dismissal of a New Jersey lawsuit challenging Barack Obama’s eligibility to be president. Instead, the Court granted certiorari to an accused terrorist to challenge President George W. Bush’s authority (which will fall to President Barack Obama, really), and the Court granted cert and an okay for an amicus brief on a labor case (age discrimination).

(writ of certiorari: [Law Latin “to be more fully informed”] An extraordinary writ issued by an appellate court, at its discretion, directing a lower court to deliver the record in the case for review. ♦ The U.S. Supreme Court uses certiorari to review most of the cases it decides to hear.) Black’s Law Dictionary, 7th ed. (Bryan Garner, ed.)

Assuming this listing to be accurate, the shotgun arguments against Obama’s eligibility appear to be dead issues. The electoral college balloting occurs on December 15 in 50 state capitals and the District of Columbia.

Short of a mass exodus of Obama electors in states where law does not bind them to vote as they pledged to vote, Obama’s selection by the electoral college appears to be fait accompli.

The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog noted the lack of order in the case, late yesterday.

For thousands of people addicted to the tubes of the internet, this will pose interesting problems as to what they can whine about for the next several weeks.

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Over the front door of the U.S. Supreme Court:

Over the front door of the U.S. Supreme Court: “Equal Justice Under Law.” Wikipedia image by UpStateNYer

11 Responses to Supreme Court: No review of Obama eligibility

  1. […] “Supreme Court:  No review of Obama eligibility“ Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Without hysterics, the Obama eligibility, Ben Smith, Rumors, Lies, Sloppy reporting, October 31, 2008, …(nov 15, 2008)Constitutional crisis’ looms over Obama’s birth location …Supremes to review Barack’s citizenship […]


  2. […] an otherwise talk-radio quality conservative NJ blog. To give you an idea, they are pushing the Obama-not-eligible nonsense (thoroughly debunked by Ed Darrell at Millard Fillmore’s […]


  3. heydave says:

    Why does anyone assume that the dinosaurs were used as beasts of burden?
    They really don’t strike me as having been rider-friendly, but maybe that’s just my heathen ways…

    Off topic (still further), I like the snowflakes!


  4. sekmet says:

    I wouldn’t bet on Donofrio. Two presidents had fathers born in Ireland while it was still under British rule…James Buchanan and Chester A. Arthur.


  5. Ed Darrell says:

    It uniquely applies to the presidency, but it doesn’t define “natural born citizen.” That is left to statute and precedent, both of which define it in ways friendly to good people like Obama.


  6. Ted says:

    Ed, the Article II “natural born citizen” provision uniquely applies to the Presidency and is distinct from “citizen”, for instance, as set forth in the 14th Amendment. And, that provision CANNOT be altered by statute. I’ll bet on Donofrio!


  7. Ed Darrell says:

    JEA — Do you know when the birth certificate for Ms. Acosta was printed? Is there any reason we should expect them to have the same typeface, the same kerning, and otherwise be identical? Real documents generally differ in several details (which is one way we can tell real documents from fakes — real documents are not exactly like each other, as the blogger you refer us to expects).

    And, on what basis do you claim that Ms. Acosta’s COLB is not fake?

    Do you know what sort of printer the two documents were printed on? Same printer? Do you know whether the toner was the same in both? Was there any software change at the vital records office between the printings? Is there only one printer making the documents, or many?

    It seems to me that you’ve fallen victim to an amateur document “expert,” one who has never had to undergo cross examination — and one who is in the practice of making snap judgments based on scanned images of documents rather than on the documents itself (between you and me, that’s known as fraud, to claim to have detected a difference without actually having examined the document).

    What you present won’t hold up in court. Do you have some evidence that will, from an expert who can stand cross examination?


    Case dismissed.


  8. Ed Darrell says:

    You’re assuming, Ted, that there is a problem with Obama’s eligibility. That’s not in evidence in any of these cases.

    Based on the evidence, the question is, is there enough reason to think there is a good chance that the plaintiffs might succeed — do they have a prima facie case against Obama’s eligibility? If not, then to uphold the Constitution, they should let the dismissal stand.

    I don’t see a prima facie case. On the one hand we have the certified document from the State of Hawaii and the presumption, so far unchallenged, that it is accurate, and a claim that Obama’s father’s citizenship somehow lessens Obama’s own citizenship. The first part should be overcome only with extraordinary evidence, of which the courts have seen none. The second part depends on an interpretation of what “natural born” means that is contrary to the interpretation in statute and in practice for at least 100 years, and maybe since 1789. Overturning that practice also will require rather extraordinary evidence and extraordinary argument. Donofrio is a poker player. Courts are not games of chance. I would not bet on Donofrio to win.


  9. Ted says:

    The choice facing the Supreme Court on Monday boils down to civil unrest to protect the Constitution or civil war to proceed to ‘inaugurate’ a non-“natural born citizen”.


  10. Ediacaran says:

    So, since President-Elect Obama has a driver’s license, will you tinfoil hatters stop whining now? Or is the DMV in on the conspiracy, too, in your view?

    Just curious, JEA – are you a creationist?

    “A new poll shows that 66% of Americans think President Bush is doing a poor job on the War in Iraq. And the remaining 34% think Adam and Eve rode dinosaurs to church.” –Tina Fey


  11. JEA says:

    Next time you move to another state and need a new driver’s license, try this: Refuse to produce the birth certificate or any other personal information required by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Just explain that a facsimile of the required document is posted on your website and give the clerk the domain name.
    Tell them: “I’m following the example of President-elect Barack Obama. If he didn’t need to produce a birth certificate to establish his eligibility to be president of the United States, why would you require me to produce one to get a lousy driver’s license?”
    See if it flies.
    Joseph Harah
    Mr. Vieira cited a fraud ruling in a 1977 case called U.S. v. Prudden, which he feels applies in this case.
    “Silence can only be equated with fraud when there is a legal and moral duty to speak or when an inquiry left unanswered would be intentionally misleading,” the ruling reads.
    Edwin Viera


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