Lock them up! That's the learned opinion of newly-minted Supreme Court *Justice Brett Kavanaugh during oral arguments on Wednesday.
At issue: Whether federal authorities must detain immigrants who had committed crimes, often minor ones, no matter how long ago they were released from criminal custody, according to a report in the New York Times.
*Justice Kavanaugh argued that a 1996 Federal law says they must be detained. Further, he has apparently convened a séance and consulted all of the members of the 1996 Congress. Or else he just knows because at heart he's a political hack in a black robe.
It is the latter, of course. "What was really going through Congress’s mind in 1996 was harshness on this topic," he said during oral arguments.
We see what you did there, *Justice Kavanaugh. You took off your robe for a split second and reached for your political hack hat!
Here's the issue, as explained in the New York Times article:
The 1996 law includes a contested phrase. It says federal authorities “shall take into custody any alien” convicted of certain crimes, some serious and some minor, “when the alien is released.” The key word is “when.”
Oh, but wait! Here is *Justice Kavanaugh with his right answer! Over here, over here, teacher!
“That raises a real question for me whether we should be superimposing a time limit into the statute when Congress, at least as I read it, did not itself do so,” he argued.
Justice Breyer disagreed, arguing that bail hearings were appropriate for immigrants detained long after being released from criminal custody. But for Kavanaugh, his own personal hackery superseded a reasonable reading of the law.
“The problem is that Congress did not trust those hearings,” he said. “Congress was concerned that those hearings were not working in the way that Congress wanted and, therefore, for a certain class of criminal or terrorist aliens said, ‘No more.’”
Oh. Did *Justice Kavanaugh just yank that out of his butt or did he get some inside info during keggers with Congress? Let's see. In 1996 he was deep in the land of Whitewater investigations, mentored by Ken Starr and firmly ensconced in Republican Operative-Ville. So I suppose it is possible, and indeed probable, that he picked up his phone and gave Newtie a ringy-dingy just to confirm what Congressional intent needs to be for this case, regardless of whether it was or not.
I think we see where this is going, and it's nowhere good. Here's an irony for you: The Justice likely to part ways with the newest *Justice is the second newest one: Justice Neil Gorsuch, who disagreed with him during the arguments.