Today is Justice Anthony Kennedy's last day (It's also Harry Potter's birthday), He has had a great career. (Kennedy, but so has Potter if you think about it). Nominated by one of our favourite Presidents: Ronald Wilson Reagan, Kennedy has had profound effect on Constitutional Law and life in the United States.
In Boumediene v. Bush, Kennedy wrote for the court that Guantanamo detainees are entitled to the constitutional privilege of habeas corpus. (5-4 decision.
In US v. Windsor, Kennedy wrote for the court that the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as an act between a man and a woman violated the Fifth Amendment guarantees of liberty.
But for our money, Kennedy's shinning hours were his decisions in Lawrence v. Texas in 2003 holding that a statute that criminalized homosexual conduct was unconstitutional, and in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, in which Kennedy and the court reaffirmed the central holdings of Roe. Kennedy's defense of precedent is masterful and a firmament of the concept we are a society that is ruled by laws, not people or passions.
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