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Monday, June 22, 2009

Clarence Thomas: A Traitor to His Race!!!!!

The gut of the Voting Rights Act was preserved by an 8-1 vote. Voting as if the whole law should be unconstitutional was Associate Justice Clarence Thomas! Clarence Thomas, who has yet to ask a question because he thinks he will sound incompetent, is a right wing extremist when it comes to the law and the rights of the people, particularly black people. The Thomas appointment was cynical to the point that even white nationalist Republicans should be embarrassed. On the Supreme Court is Rush Limbaugh's own Justice. Even Scalia voted for the narrow decision. Eight white folks voted to preserve the essence of the Voting Rights Act and the one black person on the Court sells blacks out. Need more be said? RGN

Supreme Court Rules Narrowly on Voting Rights Act
By Robert Barnes

Washington Post Staff Writer

Monday, June 22, 2009 12:27 PM

The Supreme Court today reached a compromise on the Voting Rights Act that allowed it to sidestep the question of whether a key provision of the landmark civil rights legislation remains constitutional at a time when the nation's racial politics have changed forever.

Instead, the court decided that all political subdivisions covered by the provision have the right to prove that they do not discriminate, and thus would not need to have federal authorities approve election law changes.

That provision, called Section 5, is the heart of the act, and applies to Virginia, Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Texas and parts of seven other states.

Civil rights activists had braced themselves for the conservative majority on the court to find Section 5 unconstitutional. But the court refused to do that on an 8-1 vote with only Justice Clarence Thomas, the court's only African American member, going that far. He said that "punishment for long past sins is not a legitimate basis" for imposing the act's toughest restrictions on mostly Southern states.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who at oral arguments had been sharply critical in his questioning of government lawyers who defended Congress's 2006 decision to extend the Voting Rights Act of 1965 for another 25 years, said the court did not need to settle the larger issue.

"That constitutional question has attracted ardent briefs from dozens of interested parties, but the importance of the question does not justify our rushing to decide it," Roberts wrote.

The approach seemed to follow Roberts's stated goal of deciding cases as narrowly as possible and avoiding what probably would have been another divisive ruling for the court on an important constitutional issue.

Roberts made clear he had questions about the sweep of Congress's extension of the act.

"Things have changed in the South," Roberts wrote. "Voter turnout and registration rates now approach parity. Blatantly discriminatory evasions of federal decrees are rare. And minority candidates hold office at unprecedented levels."

Civil rights groups applauded the decision. "It's fair to say this case was brought to tear the heart out of the Voting Rights Act, and today that effort failed," said Debo Adegbile, lead attorney for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

Although some briefs in the case had noted the election of President Obama in supporting the view that the law was no longer needed, the court did not mention the election of the nation's first black president.

Instead, the court decided a narrow issue raised by the tiny utility district in Austin that had served as a test case. It reversed decisions by lower courts that such jurisdictions did not have the ability to "bail out" -- exempt themselves from the restrictive provisions -- because they were not responsible for their own voter registrations.

The court made it clear that all of the 12,000 political subdivisions covered by the act had the ability to convince a federal court or the attorney general that they should be free from the restrictions. Each would have to meet certain requirements, such as showing it had not discriminated or been found guilty of a transgression for 10 years, and that it had "engaged in constructive efforts" to ensure minority voting participation

The subdivision that brought the challenge, Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One, has never been accused of discrimination.

The case is Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One v. Holder.

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