Posts Tagged supreme court

Why the VRA matters

Today Texas Governor Rick Perry signed into law one of the most draconian pieces of legislation destroying reproductive health to Texas women as Congress continues its hearings on the reinstatement of the Voting Rights Act.

Last month, the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act in an extreme act of hubris by a 5-4 vote. Roberts, in writing the majority ruling remains unclear as to which parts of the constitution were in violation of  the 40 year law that protected voting rights for African Americans, requiring several southern states (and some Northern districts) to be pre-cleared before implementing new voting rules. There’s no mention of the 15th Amendment in the majority decision for Shelby County v. Holder. The Court ...

Today Texas Governor Rick Perry signed into law one of the most draconian pieces of legislation destroying reproductive health to Texas women as Congress continues its hearings on the reinstatement of the Voting Rights Act.

Last month, ...

Marriage equality’s hip hop theme song

The rap duo Macklemore and Ryan Lewis has broken records with their hits “Thrift Shop” and “Can’t Hold Us.” And now, with their pro-marriage equality hit “Same Love,” which features out lesbian Mary Lambert, they’re shattering stereotypes.

Just as “Same Love” supported this movement, the recent Supreme Court rulings on DOMA and Prop 8 are helping the song become an even greater hit. The song hit the charts in February, when several states were voting on marriage equality and the Supreme Court was considering challenges to DOMA and Prop 8. Wednesday, when the Supreme Court ruled on  both cases, “Same Love” rose to No. 28 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, up from No. ...

The rap duo Macklemore and Ryan Lewis has broken records with their hits “Thrift Shop” and “Can’t Hold Us.” And now, with their pro-marriage equality hit “Same Love,” which features out lesbian Mary Lambert, they’re ...

Supreme Court strikes down key section of the Voting Rights Act

The Supreme Court today struck down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, which determines which states must have their approach to voting cleared by the federal government. These states have a bad track record with with people of color and non-English speakers’ rights to vote. From Colorlines:

The currently covered areas are places that historically have disenfranchised people of color, or those for whom English is their second language. But Chief Justice John Roberts has ruled that the formula, which was last updated in the late 1960s-early 1970s, must be updated by Congress so that it covers areas that violate voting rights today. Chief Roberts, who’s had a beef with the Voting Rights Act since the early 1980s, wrote in ...

The Supreme Court today struck down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, which determines which states must have their approach to voting cleared by the federal government. These states have a bad track record with with ...

A translation of the Supreme Court’s arguments against marriage equality

The Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments on California’s Prop 8, the law banning same-sex marriage in California. Because legalese is hard to understand, I’ve translated some of the arguments made against marriage equality, and one of the arguments made for it, from yesterday’s hearing.

1. Justice Samuel Alito kvetched to the Solicitor General Donald Verrilli,  “Traditional marriage has been around for thousands of years. Same-sex marriage is very new…. But you want us to step in and render a decision based on an assessment of the effects of this institution which is newer than cell phones or the Internet? I mean we — we are not — we do not have the ability to see the future.”

Translation: Gay marriage is really new so we ...

The Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments on California’s Prop 8, the law banning same-sex marriage in California. Because legalese is hard to understand, I’ve translated some of the arguments made against marriage equality, and one ...

Justice Scalia slams people of color for insisting upon equal access to voting booth

How dare people of color demand free and fair access to voting! Who are they want to exercise their fundamental right to vote without threat of disenfranchisement by partisans looking to suppress Democratic votes!?

That’s basically what Justice Scalia meant when he railed against Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act yesterday during oral arguments deciding the fate of one of the most important civil rights laws in American history.

Via ThinkProgress:

Well, maybe it was making that judgment, Mr. Verrilli. But that’s — that’s a problem that I have. This Court doesn’t like to get involved in — in racial questions such as this one. It’s something that can be left — left to Congress. 

How dare people of color demand free and fair access to voting! Who are they want to exercise their fundamental right to vote without threat of disenfranchisement by partisans looking to suppress Democratic votes!?

That’s basically what Justice ...

SCOTUS seems to have racist Arizona immigration law’s back

Yesterday, SB 1070 — the highly controversial Arizona law that would legalize racial profiling in the state – was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Obama administration. In the meantime, opponents and supporters mobilized outside to protest, and while supporters were outnumbered, they certainly made their stance clear:

Songs, chants and signs telling undocumented immigrants to “go back to your third-world armpit,” as well as woes of gang violence, terrorism and Obama’s birth certificate made a strong presence outside of the courthouse. In house, Chief Justice Roberts’ said to the Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr. upfront:

“I just want to make clear what this law is not about…No part of your argument has to do with racial or ...

Yesterday, SB 1070 — the highly controversial Arizona law that would legalize racial profiling in the state – was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Obama administration. In the meantime, opponents and supporters mobilized outside to ...

What if the Supreme Court strikes down Obamacare?

After an unprecedented 6 hours of oral arguments, the Supreme Court wrapped up their consideration of Obamacare yesterday.  The Court’s five conservatives asked probing questions and seemed very skeptical of the individual mandate throughout the week.  After three days, it seems that President Obama’s signature achievement might be in jeopardy of a partisan ruling by the Roberts Court and if they do strike it down then what happens?

No one really knows.  First off, important provisions from Obamacare are already in effect.  Adults and children with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied coverage.  If the Supreme Court strikes down the entire law would insurance companies just go back to denying coverage to those individuals?

Young people can now stay on their ...

After an unprecedented 6 hours of oral arguments, the Supreme Court wrapped up their consideration of Obamacare yesterday.  The Court’s five conservatives asked probing questions and seemed very skeptical of the individual mandate throughout the ...

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Gloria Browne-Marshall: First Black Woman to get media credentials for Supreme Court

Making history law Professor Gloria Browne-Marshall of, What’s the 411 Networks, is the first black women to get media credentials to cover the U.S. Supreme Court.  What’s the 411 Networks, a digital news/media company, was founded by Ruth Morrison in 1993 and is also the first black owned media company to get credentialed to cover the country’s highest court.

Professor Browne-Marshall has already sat in on oral arguments during this term.  Those cases include Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum and Mohamad v. Palestinian Authority last month which involved issues of corporate immunity and torture.  Asked about her historic assignment, Browne-Marshall said, “My mission ...

Making history law Professor Gloria Browne-Marshall of, What’s the 411 Networks, is the first black women to get media credentials to cover the U.S. Supreme Court.  What’s the 411 Networks, a digital news/media company, was founded by ...

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