Author News and Book Reports
Jeffrey Toobin makes a case for change at the U.S. Supreme Court
Former law clerk to a federal judge, associate counsel to Independent Counsel Lawrence E. Walsh during the Iran-Contra affair and Oliver North's criminal trial, and Assistant U.S. Attorney in Brooklyn before becoming a bestselling author and legal analyst for CNN and The New Yorker, Jeffrey Toobin brought his long list of credentials to the 2012 Miami Book Fair for an interview with fellow Harvard Law School graduate, multiple Emmy Award winning journalist and television news anchor at ABC's Good Morning America and CBS4-TV in Miami, Antonio Mora to analyze the past, present, and future cases, politics, and personalities of the U.S. Supreme Court. After graciously thanking Mitch Kaplan and the Miami Book Fair International staff, Toobin introduced his new book The Oath: The Obama White House and The Supreme Court, recently released in trade paperback (Knopf/Doubleday; June, 2013),with the story behind Chief Justice Robert's unprecendeted oath 'flub' in the 2008 swearing in of President Barack Obama and followed up with an analysis of the personalities and relationship of Chief Justice Roberts and President Obama. Following up with asurvey of the Supreme Court's shifting political landscape, Toobin then went into a detailed parsing of the controversial Citizens United court decision, and Analyzed the motives of the Justices' surprising vote on the constitutionality of Obamacare (Affordable Care Act), and the prospects for the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California's Proposition 8, predicting accurately, as it turned out, that the Supreme Court would strike down DOMA and skirt the issue of California's Proposition 8. Toobin wrapped his interview with a reflection on the Supreme Court's internal politics, commenting on the personalities and politics of Justices Ginsburg and Scalia and the innumerable split court 5-4 decisions of recent years, as well as retirement upcoming possibilities before taking questions from the audience on affirmative actionand Fisher v. University of Texas; the need for change at the Supreme Court with regard to diversity, term limits, and mandatory retirement; the character and professionalism of CNN's Wolf Blitzer; the billionaire Koch brothers influence on Justices Scalia And Thomas; the legal issues involved in the 1965 Voting Rights Act, a key part of which the Supreme Court recently struck down; and states' rights on such contgeniousissues as immigration reform.