Integrity Staffing Solutions may be a bad decision, but it is “bad” as a matter of results, not as a matter of jurisprudence: the Court did exactly as it was required to do in applying the law and precedent and articulating a rule of decision. We wouldn’t want it to do more. What we do want, and what has become increasingly impossible in the recent partisan gridlock, is for the law to change.
Many of the changes to published opinions—the vast majority, in fact—truly are minor grammatical corrections: things like correcting stylistic and typographical errors and misspellings (up to and including the occasional error in spelling a Justice’s name). Lazarus discovered, however, that many of the changes over the Court’s history have been substantive, and might alter the meaning or the reasoning behind the opinion.
This 5-4 order doesn’t necessarily foreshadow a rash of 5-4 opinions on the merits of cases to come, but it is a tough symbolic start: it highlights the contentious, rather than the concordant, at the start of an important new term.