UPDATES: U.S. Supreme Court strikes down part of Voting Rights Act; no decisions on gay marriage | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

UPDATES: U.S. Supreme Court strikes down part of Voting Rights Act; no decisions on gay marriage

Posted By on Tue, Jun 25, 2013 at 8:38 AM

The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to release additional opinions at 9 a.m. Central today. Still awaiting decisions this term:

* THE FEDERAL DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT: Can legally married same-sex couples continue to be discriminated against? UPDATE: No opinion today.

* GAY MARRIAGE: The challenge of the overthrow of Prop. 8, which banned gay marriage in California. UPDATE: No opinion today.

* VOTING RIGHTS: Does the Votings Right Act continue to have meaning in the era of a color-blind (even color antagonistic) Republican court majority?

UPDATED Answer: Not so much as before. From scotusblog on a 5-4 decision:

Holding: Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act is unconstitutional. Its formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance.

From Chief Justice John Roberts' opinion:

Our decision in no way affects the permanent, nationwide ban on racial discrimination in voting found in [Section] 2. We issue no holding on [Section] 5 itself, only on the coverage formula. Congress may draft another formula based on current conditions"

President Obama, civil rights group, unions and others have roundly condemned the decision as a retreat from civil rights. Expect more of the same from this court. Inevitably, they'll be asked — and likely approve — plans like the Billionaire Boys Club's effort to not only allow but promote white flight from majority black to majority white school districts with portable state tax money.

I liked Eschaton's analysis:

SCOTUS says places with histories of violating the voting rights of minorities are now free to continue doing so.

More specifically, they chucked out section 4 which determined which areas needed pre-clearance for changes to voting laws under section 5 of the Voter Rights Act. Congress could fix it (well, probably they couldn't even if they wanted to), and monkeys could fly out of my butt, so section 5 is essentially dead.

Justice Ruth Ginsburg blistered the majority for hubris in overriding congressional reauthorization of the act. Josh Marshall says it's now "open season" on minority voters. Arkansas Republicans opened fire on them in the last legislative session, of course. Also: Greg Sargent explains how the decision aids the Republicans' war on voting.

Early bad omens in today's Supreme Court decisions were two opinions written by Alito, the first in a Florida "takings" case where there was yet another of the frequent 5-4 votes with the usual suspects: Alito, Roberts, Scalia, Thomas and Kennedy deciding. The second Alito opinion, however, was on the question in an adoption case of whether a Cherokee biological father's rights couldbe terminated in a state court. A court split on non-ideological lines said the Indian Welfare Act doesn't prevent termination of parental rights.

The three remaining cases will be announced at 9 a.m. Central tomorrow. Indications are, scotusblog says, that Chief Justice Roberts will be author of the opinion on Prop. 8 and Justice Kennedy on the DOMA case.

Tags: , , , ,

Sign up for the Daily Update email

Comments (14)

Showing 1-14 of 14

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-14 of 14

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Women's March planned in Arkansas to mark Trump inauguration

    Speaking of Donald Trump and in answer to a reader's question: There will be a women's march in Arkansas on Jan. 21, the day after inauguration, as well as the national march planned in Washington.
    • Dec 30, 2016
  • Latest Obamacare repeal bill would hit Arkansas treasury hard

    The latest effort to undo Obamacare, the Graham-Cassidy legislation, would shift federal support for health coverage to a block grant system to the states. Bad news for Arkansas.
    • Sep 18, 2017
  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation