Who Will Win the Battle for the Supreme Court?
Is abortion a fundamental American right, or can states make their own rules? Should protections for transgender workers take priority in the workplace, or freedom of speech for religious employers? To what degree can the Supreme Court protect executive orders given by a past administration?
These questions, and more, are being decided in the United States Supreme Court, where judges with favorable views of the Constitution are locked in legal confrontation with those who want to revise its meaning. Left-leaning justices have strongly opposed President Donald Trump since he took office. However, he has managed to nominate two conservative justices during his first term, and there is reason to believe he will appoint more.
Supreme Court rulings, such as the legalization of abortion in 1973 and same-sex “marriage” in 2015, have the power to transform American society. The coming weeks will see more verdicts that could have powerful effects throughout the nation. Meanwhile, President Trump has increased his criticism of the court’s liberal justices. On June 18, he tweeted that “new justices” will be necessary to stop the radical left from erasing key constitutional freedoms.
Will President Trump succeed in his aims to gain greater control of the Supreme Court?
Abortion vs. the Constitution
One of the most-watched cases in recent months has been June Medical Services v. Russo. The question most were asking was whether a state law on abortion conflicted with rights supposedly guaranteed by the Constitution. Few asked an even more relevant and fundamental question: whether the U.S. Constitution provides for abortion rights in the first place.
Louisiana’s Act 620 aimed to ensure the safety of women undergoing abortions should an operation go wrong. It would have forced abortion providers to be within 30 minutes of a hospital and have “active admitting privileges” for their patients at that hospital. These rules already apply to any other operations done outside of a hospital, ensuring the patient is properly cared for in the event of an emergency. Left-leaning justices opposed this law when applied to abortion, however, because it would have closed abortion clinics that failed to comply with the law.
In a 5-4 ruling swung by Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court issued its verdict on June 29. Requiring abortion providers to have fast access to hospitals puts “undue burden” on women seeking an abortion—even if it could end up saving their life. Chief Justice Roberts has presided over yet another victory for those who support unrestricted access to abortion services, reversing the direction he voted on in a similar Texas law in 2016. This was also the third time in one month that he sided with the liberal judges.
Justice Clarence Thomas disagreed with the ruling, disputing that the entire premise of abortion rights never had any valid legal basis in the Constitution. He wrote that the ruling was founded on a “baseless” and “mystifying” interpretation of the Constitution, after the court “divined” a new meaning into laws dealing with rights to privacy and protection from undue government interference. This new interpretation of the Constitution was applied during the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which legalized abortion nationwide. Despite no such provision on abortion existing in the Constitution, “[t]he court nevertheless concluded that it need not bother with our founding document’s text, because the court’s prior decisions … had already divined such a right,” Justice Thomas wrote. “Without any legal explanation, the court simply concluded that this unwritten right to privacy was ‘broad enough to encompass a woman’s [abortion] decision.’”
While this decision has attracted the most publicity, it is not the only one with the potential to hasten the transformation of America’s social landscape.
Redefining the Sexes
On June 15, the Supreme Court voted 6-3 in favor of expanding the 1964 Civil Rights Act to include homosexual and transgender workers. The decision made in Bostock v. Clayton County has redefined the meaning of the sexes. Firing an individual who is homosexual, lesbian or transgender can now be prosecuted as sex-based discrimination.
This not only concerns employers who terminate a worker for being homosexual or transgender. It could allow any such worker to sue under Title vii over being fired—no matter why he or she was actually fired.
The dispute revolves around an interpretation of Title vii of the 1964 Civil Rights bill, which prohibits an employer from firing, refusing to hire, or treating differently an employee based on “race, color, religion, sex or national origin.”
Now, the Supreme Court has officially expanded the definition of “sex” in Title vii to include those who identify as homosexual, lesbian or transgender. This takes two separate concepts—biological reality and subjective identity—and makes them one. It has opened up countless questions and risks for employers who wish to run a business in a manner consistent with their personal or religious beliefs.
Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, President Trump’s first nominee appointed to the court, authored the ruling. Chief Justice John Roberts supported the decision, as did the other liberal judges. In one sense, this ruling is not new—there were other laws already in existence that protected employers from firing workers because they identify as homosexual or transgender.
In another way, however, it will prove to be revolutionary. Employers are now liable for charges under Title vii in a much broader context.
Kristen Browde, Democratic candidate for the New York state legislature and co-chair of the National Trans Bar Association, told nbc that it is “every bit as significant, if not more so” than the ruling that legalized homosexual “marriage” in 2015.
The decision summary states that “it is irrelevant what an employer might call its discriminatory practice, how others might label it, or what else might motivate it.” A business can say it was changing its mission statement, seeking to provide more relevant services, or trying to hire those who adhere to its shared tenets of belief—but none of that will carry any legal weight.
Instead, Title vii now “means that a defendant cannot avoid liability just by citing some other factor that contributed to its challenged employment action.” It also states that “the plaintiff’s sex need not be the sole or primary cause of the employer’s adverse action [of firing the employee].” Even if the employer “could have pointed to some other, nonprotected trait and insisted it was the more important factor in the adverse employment outcome,” that would be “of no significance” and the company would still be criminally liable.
What if the employer did not know the person was homosexual or transgender, or if the employer simply refused to hire them? “Nor does it make a difference,” states the summary, “that an employer could refuse to hire a gay or transgender individual without learning that person’s sex.”
This makes it virtually impossible for companies to avoid liability when firing or refusing to hire homosexual and transgender workers.
Organizations that hold religious principles now have little legal ground to stand on when defending their interests. Instead of upholding constitutional religious liberty, the court has answered with a blanket policy forcing religious business owners to employ anybody—even those who act and believe in a manner contrary to the goals of the company.
Justice Brett Kavanaugh disagreed, along with two others. “Like many cases in this court,” he wrote, “this case boils down to one fundamental question: Who decides? … Under the Constitution’s separation of powers, the responsibility to amend Title vii belongs to Congress and the president in the legislative process, not to this court … we are judges, not members of Congress. And in Alexander Hamilton’s words, federal judges exercise ‘neither force nor will, but merely judgment’ …. Under the Constitution’s separation of powers, our role as judges is to interpret and follow the law as written, regardless of whether we like the result.”
Once again, the Supreme Court took matters into its own hands instead of waiting for Congress and the Senate to pass a bill.
In response to claims that Title vii does not make employers liable in these cases, the court stated that “none of their other contentions about what they think the law was meant to do, or should do, allow for ignoring the law as it is.” Sounds good—but is the court always this fastidious with the law? A ruling three days after the Bostock verdict answers that question.
Who’s ‘Arbitrary and Capricious’?
The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 on June 18 that President Trump’s Sept. 5, 2017, memorandum ending Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (daca) was illegal.
Ironically, daca itself is illegal. It was created by executive order of the Obama administration after Congress tried and failed to pass a bill granting amnesty to children of illegal immigrants. The Department of Homeland Security (dhs) then “took matters into its own hands,” according to Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, and daca began in June 2012. This made 700,000 illegal aliens immediately eligible for federal and state benefits. However, because the program was enacted by executive order, and never debated by Congress, its continued implementation is a violation of the Constitution.
“dhs created daca during the Obama administration without any statutory authorization and without going through the requisite rulemaking process,” wrote Thomas. “As a result, the program was unlawful from its inception.”
In 2012, a similar plan, Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (dapa), was also in the works. It would have made the parents of Americans or lawful permanent residents, a further 4.3 million people, eligible for these benefits as well. Texas filed an injunction against it, and the Fifth Circuit Court found it in violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act. It was rescinded by the Trump administration in 2017.
daca has the same issues with legality as dapa did. However, rescinding it has proved a much greater challenge.
The Supreme Court’s final decision labeled President Trump’s actions against daca “arbitrary and capricious,” stating that it is forbidden by the Administrative Procedure Act.
The relevant section of the Administrative Procedure Act states that the court shall “hold unlawful and set aside agency action, findings, and conclusions found to be arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with law.” daca violates the Constitution, and President Trump sought to end it in the same way Obama enacted it—with a memorandum. By labeling his opinion as arbitrary, the court passed a judgement on the motives behind the president’s decision, while ignoring the Constitution.
In his statement of dissent, Justice Thomas wrote that the majority opinion of the court “does not even attempt to explain why a court has the authority to scrutinize an agency’s policy reasons for rescinding an unlawful program under the arbitrary and capricious microscope.”
He went on to warn about the dangers of allowing political battles to overshadow the law of the land, writing:
Today’s decision must be recognized for what it is: an effort to avoid a politically controversial but legally correct decision. The court could have made clear that the solution respondents seek must come from the Legislative Branch. Instead, the majority has decided to prolong dhs’ initial overreach by providing a stopgap measure of its own. In doing so, it has given the green light for future political battles to be fought in this court rather than where they rightfully belong—the political branches. Such timidity forsakes the court’s duty to apply the law according to neutral principles, and the ripple effects of the majority’s error will be felt throughout our system of self-government.
Perhaps even more unfortunately, the majority’s holding creates perverse incentives, particularly for outgoing administrations. Under the auspices of today’s decision, administrations can bind their successors by unlawfully adopting significant legal changes through Executive Branch agency memoranda. Even if the agency lacked authority to effectuate the changes, the changes cannot be undone by the same agency in a successor administration unless the successor provides sufficient policy justifications to the satisfaction of this court. In other words, the majority erroneously holds that the agency is not only permitted, but required, to continue administering unlawful programs that it inherited from a previous administration.
Lawlessness in America today is worse than ever, even dividing the nation’s top court. But Bible prophecy shows that this court will experience major changes in the near future.
To understand why the Supreme Court has often provided supreme opposition to the Trump administration—and why President Trump will eventually gain control—it is necessary to understand what the Bible prophesies about America’s government today.
The Bible reveals that the previous administration was attacking the law of the land. Its aim was to “blot out the name of Israel” (2 Kings 14:26-27). Our free book The United States and Britain in Prophecy proves that Israel refers to the United States.
Barack Obama spoke about making America strong, but his goal was to “completely tear down the system and remake it,” as he told Democratic donors in a November 2019 speech. His administration succeeded in this more than most people realize.
“Never have we seen a more bitterly divided America, and this man who fundamentally transformed America caused much of this division,” wrote Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry in the March Trumpet issue. “He almost destroyed America’s constitutional republic. Never have we seen such hatred between American people.” This division and hatred has become impossible to ignore since the murder of George Floyd.
Evidence of this radical agenda continues to be exposed. On June 23, the Department of Justice declassified notes written by fired Federal Bureau of Investigation agent Peter Strzok during a Jan. 5, 2017, meeting where Obama officials decided to hide their investigation of the Trump campaign from the incoming administration. Present at that meeting were former President Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, former fbi Director James Comey, former Attorney General Sally Yates and former National Security Advisor Susan Rice.
The notes reveal that President Obama directed Comey and Yates to “make sure you look at things [and] have the right people on it,” with regards to investigating Gen. Michael Flynn for evidence of Russian collusion. This was done despite a note that Flynn’s dealings with the Russian ambassador were “legit.” Strzok’s notes also show that Biden suggested using the Logan Act to get Flynn fired, another failed tactic that made headlines during the now-discredited investigation.
Bible prophecy forecast the radical left’s assault on the law of the land. It also forecast that God would use a physical leader to restrain that attack—though only temporarily.
“Is America’s Supreme Court in Bible Prophecy?” asked Mr. Flurry in January 2019. In that article, he commented on how the Republicans had gained a majority in the Senate during midterm elections, opening up the possibility that President Trump would seek to confirm more conservative judges to the Supreme Court, swinging it in his favor.
To answer this question, the time frame of this prophecy must be understood.
In ancient Israel, God used King Jeroboam ii to save the nation from collapse for a short period of time. His reign brought prosperity and territorial gains. “He restored the coast of Israel from the entering of Hamath unto the sea of the plain, according to the word of the Lord God of Israel, which he spake by the hand of his servant Jonah. … For the Lord saw the affliction of Israel, that it was very bitter: for there was not any shut up, nor any left, nor any helper for Israel. And the Lord said not that he would blot out the name of Israel from under heaven: but he saved them by the hand of Jeroboam the son of Joash” (2 Kings 14:25-27).
What Jeroboam did anciently was a type of how a modern leader is now saving the U.S. today—albeit temporarily. And the Bible says that he will get greater control of the government, including the Supreme Court.
Amos 7 refers to the time of the reign of Jeroboam ii. Amaziah, a priest who speaks on behalf of Jeroboam, tells Amos to “go, flee thee away into the land of Judah, and there eat bread, and prophesy there, But prophesy not again any more at Bethel: for it is the king’s chapel, and it is the king’s court” (verses 12-13). These verses carry great prophetic significance for America today. Mr. Flurry explained:
When in Amos 7:13 Amaziah says “it is the king’s court,” the word “king’s” is a different Hebrew word than when he talked about “the king’s chapel.” It means kingdom. The King James Version margin reads, “house of the kingdom.” Wycliffe translates it, “house of the realm.” This is not a religious entity, it is something else: the nation’s house. It is not something that is following Jeroboam, yet it favors him. It is helping him in some way. What is this referring to prophetically?
I believe this nonreligious entity, the kingdom’s house, is referring to the United States Supreme Court.
This court was designed to guard the supreme law of the land, the Constitution. In many ways, the Supreme Court is over the whole nation. Even the president is subject to it—which is exactly the type of entity that the “house of the kingdom” is referring to.
I believe this prophetic account in Amos 7 implies that there is a conservative advantage in the Supreme Court, one that favors Jeroboam.
Watch the composition of the Supreme Court for changes in the near future. The more Chief Justice Roberts and other liberal judges rule against President Trump’s agenda, the clearer it becomes that the president will need to confirm judges who agree strongly with his views. Both Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer are in their 80s. Ginsberg recently recovered from a gallbladder infection and has had several bouts of cancer. Such age and illness could create an opening for another conservative to be appointed.
President Trump will gain more influence over the Supreme Court. However, it will not last. Under King Jeroboam ii, Israel remained in rebellion against God. After the king died, the kingdom descended into civil war and was finally conquered by Assyria. Likewise, many Bible prophecies show that the U.S. will soon experience the worst time of suffering ever unless the nation deeply repents and turns to the only law that can make a nation great—the law of God.
America will eventually learn this lesson and turn to God’s perfect law—then the suffering will end permanently. At that time, the world will experience the lawful and just reign of Jesus Christ.