Now we have the Rehnquist court. And with Antonin Scalia, reported to be even more conservative than Rehnquist, joining the Supreme Court, we can count on a court that will be influenced by extreme conservatism. Both Rehnquist and Scalia are more conservative than Chief Justice Warren Burger. Thus many 5-4 decisions where Burger voted with the majority will be reversed.
Can we count on Rehnquist and Scalia to practice judicial restraint as they have promised? Only if legislatures don't pass legislation that conflicts with their right-wing views.
Very shortly we can count on anti-abortion, school prayer and death penalty devotees to mount their assaults on the courts, and, of course, these same people will attempt to attenuate affirmative action, voting rights and the rights of criminal defendants. They know the Supreme Court is their ally.
We can only hope the Democrats regain control of the Senate or the presidency. If they don't, we can count on the Supreme Court to regress to a benighted judicial era. Only one thing could be worse: Edwin Meese as a new justice.