Poll numbers down, justices say they aren’t politicians

WASHINGTON (AP) — To some observers, the Supreme Court is facing the most serious threat to its legitimacy since its decision in Bush v. Gore two decades ago that split liberals and conservatives and effectively settled the disputed 2000 presidential election in favor of Republican George W. Bush. The future of abortion rights and expansions of gun and religious rights already are on the docket. And other contentious cases could be added. The outcome in each could fracture the court along ideological lines, with the court’s six conservative justices chosen by Republican presidents prevailing over its three liberals chosen by Democrats.