SCOTUS news: Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist announced last week that he was going to return to the Supreme Court yesterday. He did not return. According to the New York Times his office released a terse statement saying that the Chief Justice spent 7 days at Bethesda Naval Hospital where he was treated for thyroid cancer. He underwent a tracheotomy so he could breathe and he is now being given both chemotherapy and radiation treatment. Medical experts say this evidence suggests that the cancer was not successfully removed and that even with heroic treatment, patients with this type of cancer usually die within a year. Should the election end up in the Supreme Court, it is not known whether Rehnquist will particpate in the case and vote on the outcome. Should he decline to participate due to ill health, the deadlock in the country might end up in a Court itself deadlocked 4-4. In such an event, the lower court ruling stands but no legal precedent is set. An alternative scenario is that Chief Justice Rehnquist resigns and that President Bush makes a recess appointment, which does not require Senate confirmation. If Bush were to appoint a new justice without Senate confirmation who then cast the deciding vote to make Bush president I fear for the future of the country. Let us hope somebody wins big today with no litigation. Do your part and vote.