On October 3rd, 2017 the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Gill v. Whitford. The main concern of the case was gerrymandering.
“In 2010, for the first time in over forty years, Wisconsin voters elected a Republican majority in the state assembly and the senate, and a Republican governor. As a result, the Republican leadership developed a voting district map that its drafters calculated would allow Republicans to maintain a majority under any likely voting scenario. The redistricting plan was introduced in July 2011, and both the senate and the assembly passed the bill shortly thereafter. The governor signed the bill into law in August 2011. Even before it was enacted, the plan faced two legal challenges, on constitutional and statutory grounds.”
During the arguments, junior Justice Neil Gorsuch began to lead the Court through a diatribe laced with his personal opinions regarding Constitutional interpretation, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg simply had heard enough of Gorsuch’s ramblings.
As reported by Jeffrey Toobin, “In her still Brooklyn-flecked drawl, she grumbled, ‘Where did one person, one vote come from?’ There might have been an audible woo that echoed through the courtroom. (Ginsburg’s comment seemed to silence Gorsuch for the rest of the arguments.) In one cutting remark, Ginsburg summed up how Gorsuch’s patronizing lecture omitted some of the Court’s most important precedents…“.
Following Ginsburg’s sharp-tongued comment towards Gorsuch, the challenging attorney, Paul Smith, saw an opportunity and chimed in: “…’That’s what Reynolds v. Sims and Baker v. Carr did, and a number of other cases that have followed along since.’ In these cases, from the early nineteen-sixties, the Court established that the Justices, via the First and Fourteenth Amendments, very much had the right to tell states how to run their elections.”
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has apparently had enough of Gorsuch and his grandstanding. She and the other Justices are just as much scholars of the Constitution as Gorsuch believes himself to be. Ginsburg isn’t going to take it anymore and she won’t sit idly by and let the new guy make the Court his personal lecture hall. Take that Neil Gorsuch!