George Will thinks how the Supreme Court rules on the Michigan affirmative action cases may come down to the personal relationship between the late Justice Lewis Powell, who wrote the famous Bakke decision upon which modern affirmative action programs are based, and Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, the likely swing vote in the case. He says this without judgment, but simply as a statement of how such things sometimes work:

The late Justice William Brennan reportedly said that the most important word in the Supreme Court is not “justice†or “equality†or “law†but “five.â€

Quite so.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.