And they’ve upset everyone on one thing or another.
Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton need to watch their blood pressure after SCOTUS annouced their decision on the VRA suit as do all the DOMA supporters. Frankly, I’m not surprised DOMA went down, it was flawed from the beginning and a violation of the 10th Amendment. Many conservatives have overlooked that. What really bothers me is how inconsistent SCOTUS is in determining 10th Amendment violations.
Let’s take a look at three of the cases this week: VRA, DOMA and California’s Ban on same-sex marriage.
A Mississippi county brought suit on the last renewal of VRA. Note, they didn’t sue the original act, just this last renewal. A renewal that was, in effect, a rubber-stamp of the original act. It lost, the DoJ oversight of voting laws for segments of the country, because today’s issues are not the same as was the issues in 1965—nor have they been for 40 years. The criteria used to justify the oversight no longer exist because Congress, in their laziness, used outdated information.
The 5-4 ruling on Tuesday addressed a 1960s-era provision that largely singled out states and districts in the South — those with a history of discrimination — and required them to seek federal permission to change their voting laws.
The court ruled that the formula determining which states are affected was unconstitutional.
In doing so, the court potentially opened the door for certain states to proceed with voter ID laws and other efforts that to date had been held up because of the Voting Rights Act. Prominent among those are voter identification laws in Alabama and Mississippi.
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott also put out a lengthy statement vowing to proceed with both a voter ID law and potentially a new set of redistricting maps without federal oversight.
“Today’s ruling ensures that Texas is no longer one of just a few states that must seek approval from the federal government before its election laws can take effect,” he said. “With today’s decision, the state’s voter ID law will take effect immediately. Redistricting maps passed by the Legislature may also take effect without approval from the federal government.” — The Hayride.
That does not mean VRA went down, only the oversight by the DoJ. Jesse and Al, obviously, disregard that. It also ends a revenue stream for them. They can no longer sue and extort money from states and municipalities using that part of VRA as an excuse.
The Texas Voter ID law was being held in limbo by the DoJ. It was nearly identical to the Indiana law that passed SCOTUS review. With the DoJ blockage removed, the Texas AG, rightly in my opinion, moved to enforce the Texas law.
He’s making hay, so to speak, while the sun shines. Why? Because the dems in Congress with immediately attempt to address the 2006 VRA flaw—outmoded data in the 2006 renewal, that was thrown out. There will be massive pressure on ‘Pubs to rollover on it and renew VRA using valid data…just to reinstate federal control over those specific states and counties to correct a situation the democrats created in the years before 1965. The Hayride notes this bit of irony.
Which gives rise to the following thought.
Namely, that the federal government found the management of the electoral system and the protection of voting rights to be so noxious and incompetent in the South in the 1960′s that Congress had to pass, and the courts to enforce, a remedial and corrective regime largely putting that system and protection under the supervision of the federal government.
That was when the South was exclusively run by Democrats.
The South is now more or less exclusively run by Republicans, and the Supreme Court has found there is no discernible reason to continue that supervision because the electoral system and the protection of voting rights in the South are no longer noxious or incompetent.
This is somehow proof that Republicans are racists as accused by the Democrat Party. You’re welcome to explain that one however you like. — The Hayride.
Looking at the SCOTUS decision on DOMA and the California ban on homosexual Marriage, both were decided on 10th Amendment basis. If you read between the lines, SCOTUS said DOMA was inappropriate use of federal power because it treated one segment of the population, those in heterosexual marriages, differently that those who weren’t married and wanted to be, i.e., homosexual marriage. It was an area the FedGov should not be in but since they were, they couldn’t discriminate. Hence, the court said homosexuals had to be treated the same as non-homosexuals.
As much as I don’t like the decision, I can understand it. If you combine that decision to the one concerning the California ban on homosexual marriage, you’ll notice the Court is saying that the definition of marriage is a state issue, not that of the FedGov.
The California ban was a Prop 8 issue. The state government refused to support their citizens in supporting the popular vote. In fact, the California state government actively opposed the Prop 8 vote. Gay advocates sued and the State courts agreed, that the Prop 8 vote was illegal. The Prop 8 supporters sued in Federal Court to overthrow the state court decision. When the state failed to support the ban, other outside agents stepped in to fill the gap—out-of-state agents. SCOTUS said those agents had no standing since they were not California agent. Therefore the Appellate decision overturning the ban was upheld.
The state government did not support the Prop 8 decision and it was the state’s position the ban was illegal so said the California Supreme Court. The proponents of the Prop 8 ban sued in Federal Court. The Appellate court affirmed the state decision. That was appealed to SCOTUS.
SCOTUS said that the FedGov and Federal courts had no business deciding purely state issues. In this case, it was homosexual marriage. Since the state failed to support the suit of the Prop 8 backers, the federal courts had no jurisdiction. Again supporting California’s 10th Amendment rights.
I strongly suspect if the opponents of the ban were California based, and if the state had supported the Prop 8 vote, the ban via the Prop 8 vote. So SCOTUS left the ban in place. That didn’t happen.
One limitation of the SCOTUS decision is that California homosexual marriages are ONLY valid inside California. Other states have no obligation to accept those marriages.
The Court rules that the petitioners did not have standing – the Circuit Court should not have been able to hear the appeal, because the state of California had declined to pursue it. This clears the way for gay marriages to resume in California, but it does not affect the other 49 states. From the opinion: “We have never before upheld the standing of a private party to defend the constitutionality of a state statute when state officials have chosen not to. We decline to do so for the first time here.” — WNYC.
Now, each state can make their own definition of marriage, but that definition is valid only within the boundaries of the state. In a sense, the suits against DOMA and California was a win for State’s Rights, State Sovereignty, and the 10th Amendment. However, I suspect many of my conservative and libertarian readers will not see the SCOTUS decision in that same light.