In 279 B.C., at the Battle of Asculum, King Pyrrhus of Epirus beat the Roman Republican armies. Pyrrhus poured his forces into the battle against the Roman might, overwhelmed them, and crushed them. Pyrrhus lost most of his troops, many of his top generals and several friends, but he won the day. Unfortunately for Pyrrhus, Rome had reserve forces. Pyrrhus had none.
"If I achieve such a victory again, I shall return to Epirus without any soldier," Pyrrhus reportedly said. Because of the devastating casualty toll, Pyrrhus had to withdraw against the Romans despite his victory. All of his territorial gains would be taken by the Romans. To this day, we remember Pyrrhus's defeat through victory as a pyrrhic victory.
The Supreme Court, on the last day of Pride Month, gave President Joe Biden just such a victory. In Biden v. Texas, the President went all the way to the Supreme Court seeking the power to end the "Return to Mexico" policy of the Trump administration. That policy required all migrants seeking to cross into the United States to return to Mexico to await processing.
Even after the Supreme Court ended Roe v. Wade a week ago, immigration remains a more important issue to voters. The court handed Biden his pyrrhic victory. Biden can end Trump's policy and allow these migrants to stay in the United States. The victory comes as a huge summer wave of migrants is headed north to our southern border. Now Biden has an immigration crisis on his hands, and Republicans can legitimately say the president fought all the way to the Supreme Court to make the crisis happen and have taxpayers pay for it.
The 2021-2022 term of the Supreme Court really made this the best Pride Month ever. In the course of a few weeks in June, the Supreme Court has restored democracy, expanded gun rights and expanded religious liberty in ways few thought possible.
For democracy, the court returned the abortion fight to the states. It never should have been in the Supreme Court. Unlike gun rights, which can be found in the Constitution, the document is silent on abortion. That means it should have been a state issue. But in 1973, seven life-tenured justices chose to preempt democratic conversations and debate and read abortion into the Constitution. Over 49 years, the pro-life movement, playing by the rules of American politics, worked within democratic institutions to reshape the Supreme Court and ultimately won. Though the press will never credit it as such, the American pro-life movement is one of the greatest demonstrations of democracy in history.
Additionally, for democracy, the Supreme Court ruled the Environmental Protection Agency cannot make regulations on climate change without Congress giving it that power. For the past hundred years, Congress has passed the buck to federal agencies to legislate so Congress could avoid having to make difficult decisions. The Supreme Court ruled Congress cannot pass the buck to unelected bureaucrats without passing clear laws. Progressives hate the ruling, but it will force Congress to actually legislate instead of abdicate responsibility.
On guns, the court reaffirmed the second amendment right to keep and bear arms and denied states the subjective power to deny concealed carry permits. Only six states were affected. Those states allowed judges or others to subjectively decide if someone could get a carry permit. California's law, for example, allows stated political beliefs to be taken into account. All the other states have objective requirements to get a carry permit, some including gun safety classes. That will now be the law in all 50 states.
Lastly, the court finally got rid of Lemon v. Kurtzman and the so-called Lemon Test, which essentially required government to default into forced secularism. The court ruled that if states cover the costs of private education, the state cannot discriminate against religious schools. The court also ruled public employees can express their religion publicly. Both protect religious liberty.
This was a major year for the Supreme Court and its decisions these last few weeks have made this the best Pride Month ever.