Sometimes I just have to shake my head in wonder

Posted: 08/03/2016 in Screwed

When the North Carolina legislature discovered that the “voter suppression” bill they passed would not do enough to keep the bulk of possible Democratic voters away from voting booths, they decided to amend it.  But first they requested information pertaining to the voting habits of young, poor, or minority voters.  They learned that such voters tended to vote early, vote absentee, vote on Sundays, or register and vote on election day.  So once they had that information in hand, they voted to amend the original bill to make it stronger by weakening or deleting those categories.  When they were challenged on those changes, the suit went to District Court.

Remarkably, even with this evidence before it, the district court upheld the law. This prompts a longtime question of mine: how far do courts have to go in believing the justification that a legislature provides for its actions? Obviously you want to be careful with this, but there’s a point at which, literally, everyone knows what’s really going on. And yet courts have to pretend to believe something else. This sure seems like a destruction test of this concept. 

Fortunately, after the District Court upheld the law, it went to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals who knocked it down.  The 4th Circuit Court opinion stated that not only was the law discriminatory, it was surgical in its attempt to remove rights from people who might vote for Democrats.

Before you celebrate take a deep breath.  Because now, of course, it’ll go up to SCOTUS.  Unfortunately, we all know what the Supreme Court is likely to say.


Be seeing you.


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