That's what it looks like to this IANAL as well. I described this decision this way to someone else: it's like a case where a drug dealer is let off because the police improperly gathered evidence. The drug dealer may be guilty as hell, but he goes free because the officials need to be slapped (and "oh you naughty boys, we'll give you another shot at this case anyway" doesn't seem much of a deterrent).bob wrote: ↑Mon Jun 04, 2018 6:22 pmIt seems like a compromise decision, based partially on the fact that the case spanned back to 2012, i.e., pre-Obergefell. It was a way to let this particular litigant win this particular case, but holds open the door for a different case. (Including, theoretically, if this baker again refuses to make a cake for a same-sex wedding.)dunstvangeet wrote: ↑Mon Jun 04, 2018 5:15 pmWith their ruling focusing on the bias of the Civil Rights Commission, why did they outright overrule the decision, rather than setting aside the ruling, and remanding it back to the Lower Court for a rehearing? That seems to me to be the right ruling, considering the course that they took.
So it feels like SCOTUS wanted to dismiss this particular case with prejudice, and the idea was to "punish" the state for its wrongdoing (being biased), to deter it (and other, similar agencies) from doing the same thing.
While I hate to see Bundys drug-dealers get away with their crimes, government officials do need to be accountable and held to a high standard.