Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Trump moves to stay discovery in emoluments case

United States seeks to stay discovery order in emoluments case// Talking Points Memo
President Trump’s Justice Department is scrambling to stop two state attorneys general from procuring evidence about whether the President is violating the Constitution’s emoluments clause by filing an emergency appeal in the Fourth Circuit court.
Warning that attorneys general from Maryland and DC have sent 38 subpoenas to third parties, Justice Department attorneys argue that the court needs to halt the lawsuit at the district court level before documents from those subpoenas are returned by a January 3 deadline.
Trump lost a motion to dismiss the suit at the district court level in the case, and he filed the appeal as a petition for writ of mandamus, essentially asking the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals to override the lower court and halt the case immediately before throwing it out entirely.
DOJ attorneys argue that the state attorneys general have a “fundamentally flawed” view of the Constitution and that the lower court judge, District Judge Peter Messitte, committed a “manifest abuse of discretion” in failing to allow an appeal of his decision denying a motion to dismiss.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Monday, December 10, 2018

Region, not party determined opposition or support of 1960's civil rights laws - Kevin Kruse

Image result for house of representative vote civil rights act 1964Related image
In a long Twitter thread Princeton historian Kevin Kruse establishes that support or opposition to the 1960's civil rights laws was determined by "region" not party.  Brown v. Board targeted southern "de jure" segregation which it demanded be extirpated "root and branch" in the 1968 Green v New Kent County.  Despite wide and deep racism  in the north, apartheid was deplored there.  By 1974 the Supreme Court would declare "de jure" and other intentional racial segregation as the boundary beyond which race conscious remedies would not be tolerated. Racial integration as a -goal lasted from 1954 to its death in 1974.  In Milliken v. Bradley the Supreme Court refused to "burden" suburbs with integration unless a suburban school district had itself discriminated on racial grounds.  The States had already been left free to fund schools inequitably.  

From 1964 to 1968 a wave of civil rights laws were passed by Democratic Congress and Senates and Democratic Presidents.  (Civil rights, Voting rights, Fair Housing, But southern Democrats were obstacles, not allies. Liberal northern Republicans compensated for the southern Democrats opposition. Republican Senator Everett Dirksen (IL) denounced Barry Goldwater for his vote against the landmark 1964 Act.  
After the Goldwater campaign rallied conservatives to the GOP banner conservative intellectuals like William Buckley and National Review, and insurgents like New York State's Conservative Party targeted the pro-civil rights GOP faction.  Faux populists, like the TV character Archie Bunker, they lambasted liberal Republicans  like New York Mayor John Lindsay as "Rockefeller Republicans" and  "limousine liberals".   After conservatives had come to dominate the GOP and could claim to be the "real" Republicans they lambasted the remnants of moderation as RINOs.
- gwc

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Tim Scott's Stand Against Voter Disenfranchisement - The Atlantic

Tim Scott's Stand Against Voter Disenfranchisement - The Atlantic: I

It should not fall to the only black Republican senator to block a man who spent his career seeking to disenfranchise minority voters from being appointed to the federal bench.

by Adam Serwer

Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina opposed the Civil Rights Act, calling it “the single most dangerous piece of legislation ever introduced in the Congress.” He opposed the Voting Rights Act. He filibustered a bill to establish a federal holiday to honor Martin Luther King Jr., accusing the civil-rights leader of “action-oriented Marxism.” He protected South Africa’s apartheid government from sanctions. He backed white rule in Rhodesia. And when he died in 2008, President George W. Bush called him an “unwavering champion of those struggling for liberty.”

It makes perfect sense that a party that celebrates a man like Helms, whose many former aides retain positions all over Washington, would nominate Thomas Farr to the federal bench. The Justice Department identified Farr, an attorney for Helms in 1984 and 1990, as aiding the Helms campaign’s effort to keep black voters from the polls. The campaign mailed postcards to some 125,000 black voters in North Carolina threatening them with prosecution if they had lived in a given precinct for less than a month and attempted to vote. Disenfranchising black voters was of the utmost urgency because Helms was running against Harvey Gantt, the black former mayor of Charlotte, and his campaign feared an energized black electorate. After running a campaign on naked appeals to white racism, including the infamous “white hands” ad, Helms prevailed.


Lawsuit: Education Is a Constitutional Right - The Atlantic

Lawsuit: Education Is a Constitutional Right - The Atlantic: A new federal complaint with a unique argument accuses the state of Rhode Island of failing to provide students with the skills they need to participate effectively in a democracy.

by Alicia Wong

Nearly all of the world’s 180-plus countries include the term education in their constitution. Most guarantee every child the right to free education, and many make participation in some form of schooling mandatory; some even provide universal access to affordable college. For the remaining handful, the UN’s decades-old treaty on children’s rights, which stipulates various educational protections, serves as a backup, and has been ratified by pretty much every sovereign nation on the planet. Except for one.
That one country is the United States of America, a nation that prizes the idea that anyone should be able to build a better life through education and hard work. Activists have occasionally sought to address this constitutional omission through congressional legislation, grassroots campaigns, and federal litigation, but they’ve never succeeded. Of the few cases that have made it to the U.S. Supreme Court, not a single one has managed to secure a majority ruling in favor of an argument that there is an implied right to an education in the Constitution. Against this backdrop, federal litigation over educational rights has all but disappeared in the past half century. Meanwhile, the nation’s public schools continue to vary significantly in funding, quality, and academic and social outcomes.
A class-action lawsuit, which is being filed in federal court in Rhode Island Wednesday evening and was provided in advance to The Atlantic, argues that baked into the Constitution is an implicit guarantee of high-quality education—in fact, that the constitutional system could not function were this not the case.
If the lawsuit were to succeed in the nation’s highest court (if it even makes it there), it could usher in a major overhaul of the country’s education system.
The 14 plaintiffs in Cook v. Raimondo, all public-school students or parents on behalf of their children, accuse the state of Rhode Island of providing an education so inferior that the state has failed to fulfill its duties under the U.S. Constitution. But given that there is no explicit guarantee of education in the Constitution, the lawyers are making a sort of bank-shot argument: that in denying citizens of Rhode Island a quality education, the state is, in essence, preventing people from exercising their constitutional rights, such as forming a legal assembly (as is guaranteed by the First Amendment) or voting (as is guaranteed by the Fifteenth). That this denial falls unevenly across the population is a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment, which promises people equal protection under the law.  

Monday, December 3, 2018

Nikole Hannah Jones - every school integration suit demanded equal funding Separate Never is =

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">It might do us well to remember that every single school desegregation lawsuit began with a push for black schools to be equally funded and ended with the realization that in a country founded on racial caste, segregated black schools would never be treated equally and never have</p>&mdash; Ida Bae Wells (@nhannahjones) <a href="">December 3, 2018</a></blockquote>
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OTHERWISE: Land and the roots of African-American poverty | A...

OTHERWISE: Land and the roots of African-American poverty | A...: Land.  Seizure of land and redistribution is the elephant in the room of American history.  As Chief Red Cloud said "They promised to ...