I blogged earlier about the extraordinary dispute in the United States Virgin Islands, in which the Virgin Islands Supreme Court ordered a sitting senator off the ballot because it concluded she had committed a crime involving moral turpitude that rendered her disqualified for office. In response, the governor pardoned her, and an ensuing case in federal court resulted in an order to get her back on the ballot. I thought that would end the matter. It didn’t. The case has become even more surreal.
In a recent decision (PDF or decisions page), the Virgin Islands Supreme Court has decided to ignore the federal court order, concluding the federal court lacked jurisdiction to hear the case; and, further, has ordered Senator Alicia “Chucky” Hansen’s name off the ballot, even though ballots have been printed, absentee ballots have been sent out, and early voting is underway.
The opinion is meandering, to say the least. It includes citations to the Rooker-Feldman doctrine, the Supremacy Clause’s purported distinction between Article III and Article IV courts, exercises of supplemental jurisdiction, and in personamand in rem proceedings.