The U.S. Supreme Court began the day with 19 argued cases yet to be decided. This included two of the most highly anticipated cases of this term involving political gerrymandering, Gil v. Whitford (Wisconsin) and Benisek v. Lamone (Maryland).
Today the U.S. Supreme Court disappointed everyone by punting on these two cases. It was an anticlimactic end to these gerrymandering cases, which are likely to return in the future with additional cases moving through the appellate courts pipeline.
In Gil v. Whitford (.pdf) Chief Justice Roberts held that “The plaintiffs have failed to demonstrate Article III standing.”
The right to vote is “individual and personal in nature,” Reynolds v. Sims, 377 U. S. 533, 561, and “voters who allege facts showing disad- vantage to themselves as individuals have standing to sue” to remedy that disadvantage, Baker, 369 U. S., at 206. The plaintiffs here al- leged that they suffered such injury from partisan gerrymandering, which works through the “cracking” and “packing” of voters. To the extent that the plaintiffs’ alleged harm is the dilution of their votes, that injury is district specific. An individual voter in Wisconsin is placed in a single district. He votes for a single representative. The boundaries of the district, and the composition of its voters, deter- mine whether and to what extent a particular voter is packed or cracked. A plaintiff who complains of gerrymandering, but who does not live in a gerrymandered district, “assert[s] only a generalized grievance against governmental conduct of which he or she does not approve.” United States v. Hays, 515 U. S. 737, 745.
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Congress, Constitution, Courts, Election Integrity, Elections, Ethics, Party Politics, Redistricting
Tagged discrimination, First Amendment, gerrymandering, voter disenfranchisement, voting rights
Expelled LD 13 State Representative Don Shooter, one of the worst examples of public servants in Arizona.
Over the last week, the GOP which regularly touts its commitment to inclusion and family values has nominated a self-admitted white nationalist and Confederate supporter to run for the Senate in Virginia and a brothel owner to run for a Congressional seat in Nevada.
With examples such as these, it should be no surprise that an individual expelled from the Arizona State House of Representatives for sexual harassment would think he would have an opportunity to elevate himself to the Arizona State Senate.
Like many reactionary and self-absorbed members of his party, Don Shooter is one of the worst examples of public servants in Arizona.
In some ways, Democrats should hope he gets the nomination. Shooter, along with “let’s take away your rights” Vince Leach, “ISIS is going to invade us from Mexico” Mark Finchem and “There are not enough white kids” David Stringer are poster candidates for why the Democrats need to return to power. However, decency prevails and the residents of LD 13 should not reward bad behavior and allow Shooter to run for the State Senate.
Posted in Abortion, Activism, Arizona State Legislature, Ballot Referendas and Initiatives, Budgets, Campaigns, Civil Rights, Commentary, Community, Corruption, Counties, Courts, David Gordon, Drug Policy, Economics, Editorial, Education, Elections, Gender Equality, Gun Policies, Healthcare, Immigration, Justice, Labor, Law Enforcement, Legislation, Maricopa, Mexico Border, Military, Party Politics, Political Calendar, Political Events, Primaries, Propositions, Scandals, Taxes
Tagged David Stringer, don shooter, jd mesnard, LD 13, Mark Finchem, Michelle Harris, Vince Leach
Phoenix Council Member Kate Gallego.
With popular Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton resigning his office to run for Kyrsten Sinema’s Ninth Congressional House Seat, a special non-partisan election will be held this November to elect his successor who will preside over the fifth largest city in the country.
There are two Phoenix Council Member Democrats vying to succeed him. They are Kate Gallego (who represents Phoenix District Eight) and Daniel Valenzuela (who represents Phoenix District Five). The Blog For Arizona is profiling both candidates and interviewed both on their positions and their vision for moving Phoenix forward. This piece describes Councilmember Gallego’s goals and vision for the fifth largest city in the country.
Posted in Abortion, Arizona State Legislature, Ballot Referendas and Initiatives, Campaigns, Civil Rights, Courts, Crime, David Gordon, Debates, Economics, Education, Elections, Endorsements, Energy, environment, Gender Equality, Gun Policies, Healthcare, Housing, Immigration, Infrastructure, Labor, Law Enforcement, Legislation, Maricopa, Mexico Border, Party Politics, Poverty, Primaries, Propositions, Science, Taxes, Transportation, Water
Tagged Daniel Valenzuela, Greg Stanton, kate gallego
Permanent musical accompaniment: I Fought The Law (And The Law Won), by the Bobby Fuller Four (1966).
The Special Counsel and U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson sent President Trump a clear message today: tamper with witnesses, and you will be going to jail; you can share a cell with your former campaign manager. Paul Manafort ordered to jail after witness-tampering charges:
A federal judge ordered Paul Manafort to jail Friday over charges he tampered with witnesses while out on bail — a major blow for President Trump’s former campaign chairman as he awaits trial on federal conspiracy and money-laundering charges next month.
“You have abused the trust placed in you six months ago,” U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson told Manafort. “The government motion will be granted, and the defendant will be detained.”
The judge said sending Manafort to a cell was “an extraordinarily difficult decision” but said his conduct — allegedly contacting witnesses in the case in an effort to get them to lie to investigators — left her little choice.
“This is not middle school. I can’t take away his cellphone,” she said. “If I tell him not to call 56 witnesses, will he call the 57th?” She said she should not have to draft a court order spelling out the entire criminal code for him to avoid violations.
“This hearing is not about politics. It is not about the conduct of the office of special counsel. It is about the defendant’s conduct,” Jackson said. “I’m concerned you seem to treat these proceedings as another marketing exercise.”
Posted in AZBlueMeanie, Campaigns, Constitution, Corruption, Courts, Crime, Election Integrity, Elections, Ethics, GOP War On..., Justice, Law Enforcement, President, Russian Affair, Scandals, War
Tagged Cyber Crime, Cyber War, obstruction of justice, Special Counsel, suborning perjury, witness tampering