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View Diary: When SCOTUS Rules in Favor of the NSA, Will You Call for Impeachment Then? (233 comments)

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  •  Well you can see it several ways (0+ / 0-)

    The reasoning in both decisions was some variation on "times have changed".

    They said:

    “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.”

    Remember, both laws were approved by Congress with large, bipartisan majorities. So if you think the courts should defer to the elected branches, it’s a high hurdle to support either decision. In both cases, the idea behind nullification seems to be that the passage of time has rendered the relevant sections unconstitutional, even though they were (or seemed to be) constitutional when passed: On VRA, it makes no sense to penalize states and localities based on 40-year-old statistics, and on DOMA . . . well, we’ve all learned a lot about homosexuality in the last couple of decades.

    Roberts cites traditions and interpretations that suggest all states should be treated the same; but the whole point of the original VRA was to treat states differently based on their histories — and if 30 years was not enough to get the job done but 40 years is, shouldn’t that finely calibrated decision be made by Congress (which the Fifteenth Amendment explicitly gives the authority to enforce voting rights)?

    As a VRA supporter I might say, for example, that we need to wait until most of the people who grew up under Jim Crow are gone, which I can understand that some consider incorrect but at least it is debatable. (If you point out that black turnout exceeds white in many areas, the reply might be: “See? It works!”)

    So ultimately is it the Supreme Court’s job to weigh in on political questions like this? Or, if it is OK for the Supreme Court to decide that this argument is too weak to accept, why shouldn’t it also be able to decide that in the 21st century, defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman in order to reinforce the mental association between sex, marriage, and procreation is also too weak?

    This to me is not some clear and cut case of partisanship but competing interpretations of subjective laws.

    But once again why is all this relevant to spying on Americans by this administration which is where I chimed in?

    •  You make some reasonable points (0+ / 0-)

      but most of what I'm hearing seems to support the point that I'm making - that the VRA ruling was not legitimate.  As to DOMA, they used the exact opposite rationale to defend, but the main reason why it was legitimately struck down is that the only reason for it was to discriminate against and marginalize people, for which there is no explicit Constitutional authority.

      Sign the petition to demand a law-abiding Supreme Court.

      by Troubadour on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 03:58:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well we (0+ / 0-)

        and many others can disagree but it doesn't delegitimize the court nor their opinions. It happens all the time. And that (inflicts an “injury and indignity” on gay couples) isn't the only reason in play as there were also concerns with the initiative process and federalism in the DOMA decision. And that wasn't the issue with VRA. If the VRA decision was not legit- according to you- why was the DOMA decision legit?

        And let's not forget the Democrats who were behind DOMA which included Chuck Schumer, Pat Leahy, Harry Reid, Joe Biden, and the president who signed it into law, Bill Clinton. And of course until yesterday Obama himself opposed gay marriage. You obviously feel very passionate about the issue(s?) but I think your intensity on a single issue has spread to other unrelated aspects of the judiciary.

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