Supreme Court associate Justice Sam Alito is a huge Philadelphia sports fan. On his first day in chambers, there was a knock on the door. Being the rookie on the court, the New Jersey native had to open the get up from the table and open the door. When he did, the Phillie Phanatic burst in to give him a hug.
Well, a day after the Philly’s pro-football team won the Super Bowl, the state learned the conservative justice gave democrats a huge win.
This wasn’t expected by many pundits.
The court has a conservative majority. And with Clarence Thomas and Noel Gorsuch on the team, a partisan one. So when it looked at a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that the state’s congressional district map was unconstitutional, many expected Alito and the other conservatives would overturn the ruling. The funny thing is that most of the justices don’t fall on party lines when it comes to gerrymandering. Alito’ colleagues Stephen Breyer and Anthony Kennedy seem to have really taken partisan gerrymandering up as a bette noir.
In truth, the issue is more about who is in power. Dems in Maryland are as corrupt on this as republicans in Pennsylvania. The court’s cherished One Person, One Vote doctrine appears to be at loggerheads with the issue, so Alito’s decision is shocking, but not quite surprising.