In the conclusion to the rogue elector saga we have been following, the Supreme Court applied what I refer to as the “Erosion Doctrine” to unanimously hold that states can turn their presidential electors into mere rubber stamps, thus depriving them of any discretion when selecting the president. Over two centuries, the power of electors to use their discretion slowly eroded until this case, decided earlier this year, officially killing off that discretion and an original part of the Constitution with it.
In this 5-4, 1997 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court declared certain key provisions of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act unconstitutional. While the Brady Act was an attempt at federal gun control, this is not a Second Amendment case. It is a Tenth Amendment case. Justice Scalia, writing for the majority, held that Congress is constitutionally prohibited from infringing on the sovereignty of states by commanding local law enforcement agents to participate in a federal regulatory scheme, subject to federal sanction if they do not.