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Midnight ruling exposes divisions of Supreme Court transformed by Trump

However, the dynamics of the court can be complicated and not all decisions are in the direction of predictability. For example, as Chief Justice Roberts has lost his place at the ideological center of the court, his replacement, Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, the second person appointed by Mr. Trump, values ​​consensus and may prove to be an ally. occasional.

Judge Kavanaugh issued a conciliatory, conciliatory opinion on Wednesday noting that he agreed with much of what Chief Justice Roberts had written in dissent.

“I am separating from the Chief Justice,” he wrote, “on a narrow procedural point. That point – whether the court should act immediately, notwithstanding Mr Cuomo’s decision to lift the contested restrictions at this time – was sufficient to dispose of the case, however.

The majority opinion was not signed off, but Ross Guberman, an authority on legal writing and the author of “Point Taken: How to Write Like the World’s Best Judges,” said he suspected that its principal author was the most recent judge.

“My money is on Judge Barrett,” Guberman said, indicating word choices that echoed his views on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Among them, he said, was “the concession that judges’ are not public health experts” “and” a taste for ‘and’, ‘but’ and ‘show’. “

The unsigned opinion was soft and measured, which is also characteristic of Judge Barrett’s judicial work. He challenged what he said were Mr. Cuomo’s unduly harsh restrictions, which had been challenged by, among others, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn and two synagogues, the latter of which argued that Mr. Cuomo had ” singled out religion for blame and retribution for a surge in a society-wide pandemic.

The majority opinion said less restrictive measures would work.

“Among other things, the maximum attendance at a religious service could be related to the size of the church or synagogue,” according to the opinion. “It’s hard to believe that admitting more than 10 people into a 1,000-seat church or 400-seat synagogue would create a more serious health risk than many other activities permitted by the state.

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