Is This Bill Constitutional?

The inaccurately named Respect for Marriage Act is currently making its way through the Senate. However, there are some questions about whether or not the bill is Constitutional. On Sunday, Just the News posted an article listing some of those concerns.

The article reports:

The bill, HR 8404, was introduced in the House by U.S. Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-NY, on July 18 and passed by a vote of 267-157 the next day. The U.S. Senate took it up on Nov. 14.

It would provide “statutory authority for same-sex and interracial marriages” and repeal several provisions of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The 1996 law received bipartisan support including from then U.S. Sen. Joe Biden and U.S. Rep. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, and from Democratic President Bill Clinton, who signed it.

When a constitutional amendment was proposed to ban same-sex marriage in 2006, Sen. Biden told Meet the Press’ Tim Russert, “I can’t believe the American people can’t see through this. We already have a law, the Defense of Marriage Act … where I voted and others … that marriage is between a man and a woman and states must respect that. … Why do we need a constitutional amendment? Marriage is between a man and a woman.”

Sixteen years later, President Biden now supports replacing DOMA provisions, which “define, for purposes of federal law, marriage as between a man and a woman and spouse as a person of the opposite sex,” with ROMA provisions “that recognize any marriage that is valid under state law,” according to the bill summary.

The article notes:

After their vote, Biden said, “Love is love, and Americans should have the right to marry the person they love,” adding their vote made “the United States one step closer to protecting that right in law.”

Schumer also said he had “zero doubt” the bill “will soon be law of the land.”

But multiple groups disagree, arguing it’s unconstitutional for the same reasons the Supreme Court struck down DOMA. Because the court already ruled Congress doesn’t have the constitutional authority to define marriage under Article 1 of the U.S. Constitution, and because ROMA is nearly identical to DOMA, they argue it will also likely be struck down.

In a letter to Congress, the nonprofit religious freedom organization Liberty Counsel argues the court ruled in Windsor, “DOMA, because of its reach and extent, departs from this history and tradition of reliance on state law to define marriage.” It also ruled, “[b]y history and tradition the definition and regulation of marriage . . . has been treated as being within the authority and realm of the separate States.”

It is entirely possible that the way to solve this dilemma is to totally remove government from the institution of marriage. Leave marriage with the church–churches should have the right to marry or not to marry anyone they want to. A couple can find a church to do their wedding without having to worry about the government getting involved. A church certificate would be enough to prove the wedding, and the government would not need to be involved. In the case of a divorce, the church certificate would prove the marriage. Let the churches go on record for what they support and what they don’t support.

Moving Toward The Country The Founding Fathers Envisioned

On October 13th, CBN posted an article about an important Supreme Court decision that got lost in the chaos of the Supreme Court’s decision on abortion.

The article reports:

In the aftermath of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v Wade it was easy to miss, but the court’s ruling in West Virginia v. EPA delivered a major blow to the federal bureaucracy.

The case considered the Obama-era Clean Power Plan. President Obama couldn’t get his plan to drastically change the nation’s power grid known as “Cap and Trade” through Congress, so he famously acted on his own.

“I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone and I can use that pen to sign executive orders and take executive actions and administrative actions that move the ball forward,” the president said before a 2014 cabinet meeting and on a number of other occasions. 

Working through the EPA on executive authority he expanded the Clean Air Act, written in the 1960s, to reduce toxic emissions. Instead of addressing individual power plants as the law had been applied, Obama went after the entire fossil fuel industry in a way that would have transformed the U.S. power grid, and for that, the Supreme Court called a foul.

“The court said Congress has to say specifically what they want EPA to do if they’re going to do something that has such a monumental impact,” said Derrick Morgan, executive vice president of The Heritage Foundation.

He says the court’s action is significant as presidents increasingly wield their executive pens to get their agendas passed around Congress.

Essentially, this forces Congress, elected by the people, to make the laws and be held accountable for the laws they make. The President has the choice to sign or veto the laws and should also be held accountable. This may help deal with some of the garbage regulations coming out of Washington. This ruling may also serve to protect the free speech rights that many in Congress are trying to limit.

The article concludes:

Also, look for more guidance from the Supreme Court. Chad Squitieri, an expert in administrative law at The Catholic University of America, says the court seems primed to examine whether the administrative state has drifted too far from the separation of powers which is a bedrock of America’s Constitution.

“The Major Questions Doctrine which was applied in West Virginia v EPA is sort of, I like to say, scratching at the non-delegation itch. It’s not the full-fledged non-delegation doctrine, but I think it’s something of a halfway measure and I think these types of questions – looking at different ways courts may police how Congress delegates authority to the agencies – is going to be a recurring theme in the years to come,” he told CBN News.

“I think it’s because the current court is more prepared than courts in the past to enforce the original understanding of the Constitution – what we would call the original public meaning of the Constitution, particularly the separation of powers and federalism,” he continues.

It will be a relief to many Americans who want to be governed directly by the people they elect and are eager to rid themselves of what they see as a gross overreach by unelected bureaucrats.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. This is a really good decision.

Moving Toward More Honest Elections

Periodically I post articles that I do not understand. This is one of them. I am posting it because I think it is an important step to end some of the problems that we have had in recent elections.

On Tuesday, The Epoch Times reported:

The Supreme Court on Tuesday vacated an appeals court decision that required Pennsylvania to count mail-in ballots even if there is no date on the envelope.

“The judgment is vacated, and the case is remanded to the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit with instructions to dismiss the case as moot,” wrote Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ketanji Brown Jackson (pdf), siding with David Ritter, an unsuccessful Republican candidate for a judgeship.

They also threw out a U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling that allowed the counting of mail-in ballots in the race that Ritter had sought to remove because voters did not write the date on the ballots. Ritter lost his 2021 bid to serve on the Lehigh County Court of Common Pleas after 257 mail-in ballots that didn’t have dates were counted.

Pennsylvania Republican legislators and conservatives filed amicus briefs saying the 3rd Circuit’s ruling threatened the integrity of the 2022 midterm elections.

But the Supreme Court’s action on Tuesday means that the 3rd Circuit ruling cannot be used as a precedent in the three states covered by this regional federal appellate court—Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware—to allow the counting of ballots with minor flaws such as the voter failing to fill in the date. Vacating the ruling does not change Ritter’s loss in his race.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article.

In the months preceding the 2020 election, many states altered their voting laws because of the fear generated during the Covid pandemic. Many of those laws were changed in ways that were not in compliance with the constitutions of their state. A number of court cases since the election (and some before the election) have reversed those changes and required the states involved to follow their own constitutions.

UPDATE:  Pennsylvania says it will ignore the Supreme Court’s ruling (article here).

The Second Amendment Goes To The Supreme Court (Again)

There have been a number of Second Amendment cases that have made their way to the Supreme Court in recent years. That alone should make all of us carefully examine the nominees for the court. Some of the decisions in the past have been five-four, meaning that placing one of two liberal justices on the Court could easily end the Second Amendment. There is no higher court than the Supreme Court–if the Court begins to undo the Second Amendment, there will be no place to appeal.

On Monday, The Epoch Times posted an article about another Second Amendment case that the Supreme Court recently heard and ruled on.

The article reports:

The Supreme Court reversed a federal appeals court decision on Oct. 3 that upheld one of Massachusetts’ tough gun laws, months after the high court expanded Second Amendment rights.

The Massachusetts law in question, the constitutionality of which is now in doubt, imposed a lifetime ban on purchasing handguns—but not possessing them—on anyone convicted of a nonviolent misdemeanor that involved the possession or use of guns.

The high court remanded the case, Morin v. Lyver (court file 21-1160), to the U.S Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit “for further consideration in light of” the Supreme Court’s landmark June 23 decision in New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen.

Massachusetts was previously added to Morin v. Lyver as an intervenor to defend the constitutionality of the state law.

The order was unsigned and no justices indicated they were dissenting from it. The justices didn’t explain why they granted the order.

In Bruen, a 6–3 ruling, the high court recognized a constitutional right to bear firearms in public for self-defense and struck down New York’s law that required an applicant to demonstrate “proper cause” to obtain a license to carry a concealed handgun in public.

The court also found that gun restrictions must be deeply rooted in American history if they are to survive constitutional scrutiny.

The person in the Massachusetts case was Alfred Morin, a resident of Massachusetts. Mr. Morin, who has a concealed carry permit in Massachusetts, traveled to Washington, D.C., and was visiting the American Museum of Modern History, when he saw a sign saying that guns were not permitted. He approached a guard to ask where he could check his gun. Mr. Morin possessed a valid Massachusetts License to Carry Firearms but was unaware that District of Columbia laws prohibited him from carrying his gun, despite having the Massachusetts license.

The article continues the story:

Police arrested Morin and charged him with carrying a pistol without a license, possession of an unregistered firearm, and unlawful possession of ammunition.

On Nov. 8, 2004, Morin pleaded guilty to attempting to carry a pistol without a license and possession of an unregistered firearm, both misdemeanors.

The Superior Court of the District of Columbia sentenced Morin to 60 days imprisonment on each count, three months of supervised probation, and 20 hours of community service. The court suspended the imprisonment portion of the sentence.

Morin later applied to police in his home state for a Firearms Identification Card and a permit to buy a firearm in February 2018. Respondent William Lyver, chief of the Northborough, Massachusetts, police department, denied Morin’s application for a permit to purchase on April 4, 2018.

The Supreme Court summarily disposed of the pending case, simultaneously granting the petitioner’s request seeking review while skipping over the oral argument phase at which the merits of the case would have been considered. Some lawyers call this process GVR, which stands for grant, vacate, and remand.

Mr. Morin should have checked the laws of Washington, D.C., before bringing his gun there. However, he did the right thing in approaching the guard in the museum. There was absolutely no reason to arrest him–they should have simply told him to leave Washington, D.C., and come back without his gun. This entire case was totally unnecessary.

Has This Lady Read The U.S. Constitution?

On Friday, The Hill posted an article about a recent comment by Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.

The article reports:

Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan said on Thursday at a conference that the legitimacy of the Supreme Court is tied to its conformity to public opinion, Reuters first reported.

“I’m not talking about any particular decision or even any particular series of decisions, but if over time the court loses all connection with the public and with public sentiment, that’s a dangerous thing for a democracy,” Kagan said at a judicial conference in Montana.

…Kagan said at the conference that the court earns its legitimacy by remaining impartial and nonpartisan.

“Overall, the way the court retains its legitimacy and fosters public confidence is by acting like a court, is by doing the kinds of things that do not seem to people political or partisan,” she said.

Kagan referenced times in history when Supreme Court justices failed to discipline themselves and instead “attempted to basically enact their own policy or political or social preferences,” saying that this puts court legitimacy at risk.

This is an amazing statement. The only thing the Supreme Court is required to be tied to is the U.S. Constitution.

On Saturday, Ed Morrissey posted the following at Hot Air:

Liberal Justice Elena Kagan said on Thursday that it would be a “dangerous thing for a democracy” if the conservative-majority U.S. Supreme Court loses the confidence of the American public.

Speaking in public for the first time since the court’s momentous ruling last month that overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide, Kagan stressed the importance of the justices staying in their proper roles as judges and not dictating public policy.

The problem with Roe v. Wade actually had very little to do with abortion. The problem with Roe v. Wade was the Tenth Amendment.

The Tenth Amendment states:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Abortion is an issue that needs to be determined by every state–by legislators voted in by the people of that state and answerable to the people of that state. The Supreme Court simply overturned a decision that was unconstitutional. They did not end abortion–they simply left it up to each state to make the laws that the people in that state want.

Another Story The Mainstream Media Is Hoping We Will Forget

On Tuesday, Townhall posted an article with the following headline, “Will America Ever Find Out Who the Supreme Court Leaker Is?” That is a very good question. Each Justice is allowed four law clerks, and there is a support staff. However, the number of people who would have had access to a draft of a brief would be very limited. We really should know by now who leaked, and the person who leaked should be facing severe consequences. It is odd that we don’t know.

The article reports:

Last Thursday, the Supreme Court officially ended its term after releasing final opinions on a number of cases. 

But the Supreme Court still hasn’t revealed who leaked the draft opinion of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization at the beginning of May. 

…The leak not only rocked the Supreme Court, where trust and confidentiality are crucial, but prompted violent pro-abortion activists to launch a number of attacks on crisis pregnancy centers and illegally converge on the homes of conservative justices. Democrats have called for court-packing and even the elimination of the Supreme Court. Last week, President Joe Biden attacked justices on foreign soil.

…On June 24, the Court released the final opinion on Dobbs. It was largely unchanged and was nearly identical to the leaked draft opinion. The Department of Justice has expressed little interest in exploring potential criminal consequences for the leaker. 

I can only assume that the leak came from the political left–the Justice Department does not seem to have prioritized the case (as I believe they would have if the leak came from the right). I suspect the media (and the Biden administration) are simply hoping that we will forget about the entire matter by the end of summer and it will never be brought up again. I really think that if the Republicans take Congress in the mid-terms, they have some serious investigating to do in a lot of areas.

Waiting For The Court Cases On This New Law To Begin

On June 23rd, The New York Post reported that the U.S. Supreme Court had struck down the restrictions New York State had put on concealed carry permits.

The Court ruled:

Writing for the 6-3 majority, Justice Clarence Thomas said Thursday that the law’s requirement of New Yorkers who want a permit to carry a handgun in public to show “proper cause” that the weapon is ​specifically needed for self-defense “violates the Fourteenth Amendment by preventing law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms in public.”

Well, the New York legislature decided that the Supreme Court decision was unacceptable.

On Saturday, The American Thinker reported:

In an act of breathtaking defiance and spitefulness not seen since Southern states engaged in “massive resistance” to the Supreme Court’s 1954 Brown v. Board decision, the New York State Legislature gave a middle finger to the Supreme Court and voted Friday to effectively nullify the Court’s decision last week in New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen.

After an extraordinary session for the explicit purpose of defying the Court, Senate Bill S51001 was rammed through on a party-line vote by the Democratic supermajority, passed the Assembly, and received the signature of Gov. Kathleen Hochul.

Writing for the majority in Bruen, Justice Clarence Thomas struck down New York’s century-old requirement that an applicant for a handgun carry permit demonstrate a “special need” if he wanted to carry for self-defense.  New York’s licensing process was entirely discretionary and arbitrary, and in many jurisdictions, licensing officers simply refused to issue permits for self-defense.  This was particularly true in New York City, where applicants were routinely and summarily rejected unless they were politically connected or celebrities — such as Howard Stern, Donald Trump, and Don Imus.  In other jurisdictions, licensing officers simply invented acceptable reasons on a whim, often issuing handgun licenses for “hunting and target shooting” only, if at all.  (In one rural upstate county, a former judge who had authority as a licensing officer invented a requirement that he would not allow any permit-holder to have more than five handguns without appearing before him personally and giving a “good reason.”)

In Bruen, Justice Thomas ruled that these arbitrary restrictions were unconstitutional and violated the Second Amendment’s guarantee to keep “and bear” arms for self-defense, ordering New York State and New York City to issue concealed carry permits to qualified applicants for that reason.

In response, Gov. Hochul (who was endorsed by the NRA in 2012 when she ran for Congress in rural Western New York) vindictively declared that New York would restrict guns to the point where the State would “go back to muskets.”  Hochul called the Legislature back from recess and presented a bill that criminalizes as a felony offense concealed carry in perhaps 98% of the state.

At some point you begin to wonder why some people in our government are so anxious to take guns away from law-abiding citizens.

Another Win For The Supreme Court

Does anyone remember this gem from 1975:

This is a kid-oriented explanation of how laws are supposed to be passed in America. Unfortunately, many of our laws are currently being passed by unelected bureaucrats in government agencies. These bureaucrats are not held accountable by the people because they never have to run for office. Well, on Thursday the Supreme Court took a small step to bring America back to the lawmaking procedure established by our Founding Fathers.

Red State posted an article on Thursday reporting the decision.

The article reports:

The Supreme Court sharply curtailed the power of the EPA to regulate greenhouse-gas emissions that cause climate change. In a 6-3 ruling written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the court sided with conservative states and fossil-fuel companies in adopting a narrow reading of the Clean Air Act.

The Court found that Congress had not authorized the EPA to induce a shift toward cleaner energy sources.

“Congress did not grant EPA…the authority to devise emissions caps based on the generation shifting approach the Agency took in the Clean Power Plan,” the majority wrote.
The ruling was spurred by an appeal to a decision last year that struck down a Trump-era power plant rule.

In appealing that decision, West Virginia asked the court to consider whether the EPA has the authority to try to push the entire system away from coal and reshape the country’s electric grid.

The article notes:

Justice Kagan in her dissent acted as though it was the Court’s responsibility to address climate change, rather than interpret the law and the Constitution.

Maybe she needs to go back and reread the Constitution.

If the Biden administration wants to change the source of America’s energy, they need to ask Congress to pass a bill to do that. Elected officials need to be held accountable for the laws they make. Bureaucrats are not elected and cannot be held accountable. That is why our laws are supposed to be made by Congress and not by bureaucrats.

In Case You Are Wondering, It Is Ultimately About The Money

The protests continue against the Supreme Court ruling against abortion, despite the fact that the ruling did nothing more than allow each state to make its own rules regarding abortion. So what is all this noise actually about? First of all, abortion is a million-dollar industry that contributes large amounts of money to politician’s campaign coffers. If abortion is limited, campaign contributions will also be limited. Secondly, it is cheaper for a corporation to pay for an abortion than to pay for maternity leave and the costs associated with motherhood. Also, a mother’s first priority is generally her child–not the corporation. So abortion does make a large contribution to the economy and to the political class. That explains some of the horror at the idea that some states will be limiting abortion. Meanwhile, the government is seriously interested in maintaining the status quo.

On Tuesday, The Washington Examiner reported the following:

The Biden administration is considering setting up abortion providers on federal land in red states, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said Tuesday.

The administration has not decided yet whether it will pursue the plan, which is favored by left-wing legislators Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes (D-NY) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), but Becerra said that “every option is on the table.”

…Becerra’s comments are at odds with those of Vice President Kamala Harris, who said just Monday that the administration was not discussing clinics on federal lands. 

The article concludes:

The proposal, if pursued by the administration, would offer women a safe haven for abortion access in red states, most of which have already curtailed access. The Supreme Court’s decision on Friday to uphold Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban overturned the 49-year-old constitutional guarantee of the right to an abortion, sending the power of regulating access to the procedure back to the states. But abortion is not federally illegal.

“We know that there is misinformation out there about what the Supreme Court did. We want to make sure it’s clear that Americans didn’t lose every right they have. Americans still can assert their rights, and we will do everything we can to protect you,” Becerra said

Just for the record, abortion was never and never should be a right.

Punished For Doing Your Job Well

On Saturday, The Daily Wire reported that the attorneys who argued the concealed carry case before the Supreme Court were forced to retire from their law firm.

The article reports:

The lawyers who won a major Second Amendment case before the U.S. Supreme Court this week got even less than a pat on the back from the white-shoe law firm they work for – they were forced to quit.

Paul Clement and Erin Murphy, the lawyers who successfully argued against New York’s law restricting conceal-carry gun permits, were told by Kirkland & Ellis they had to stop representing Second Amendment plaintiffs or find another firm. In a Wall Street Journal article, the duo explained how their celebration was cut short.

“Having just secured a landmark decision vindicating our clients’ constitutional Second Amendment rights in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, we were presented with a stark choice—withdraw from representing them or withdraw from the firm,” they wrote. “There was only one choice: We couldn’t abandon our clients simply because their positions are unpopular in some circles.”

The article concludes:

The decision has implications for at least eight other so-called “may issue” states, where bureaucrats have the final say in whether a citizen merits a permit. In New York, the law was used to render concealed carry handgun permits nearly impossible to obtain.

Clement, who served as the U.S. solicitor general under President George W. Bush, and Murphy, also an experienced appellate attorney, were partners in the firm. But they wrote that they were resigned to leaving after being told they can’t take on Second Amendment cases.

“This isn’t the first time we have left a firm to stick by a client,” they wrote. “What makes this circumstance different is that the firm approved our representation of these clients years ago, and dropping them would cost the clients years of institutional memory. More remarkable still, in one of the cases we were asked to drop, we prevailed in the Supreme Court on Thursday.”

We are in danger of losing our Republic.

A Good Decision

On Tuesday, CNS News reported that the Supreme Court has ruled that the State of Maine cannot limit its tuition assistance programs to non-religious schools. Six of the Justices voted against limiting the assistance to only non-religious schools, citing the First Amendment prohibiting laws that limit the free expression of religion.

The article reports:

“Maine has enacted a program of tuition assistance for parents who live in school districts that do not operate a secondary school of their own,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote for the majority:

“Under the program, parents designate the secondary school they would like their child to attend — public or private — and the school district transmits payments to that school to help defray the costs of tuition. Most private schools are eligible to receive the payments, so long as they are ‘nonsectarian.’

“The question presented is whether this restriction violates the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment.”

As the opinion noted, Maine has limited its tuition assistance payment to “nonsectarian schools” since 1981.

The petitioners wanted to send their children to accredited religious schools, but since those two schools did not qualify as “nonsectarian,” they were denied the state tuition assistance payments.

The petitioners sued the commissioner of the Maine Department of Education, alleging that the “nonsectarian” requirement violated the Free Exercise Clause and the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, as well as the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

As parents increasingly speak out against some of the values being taught in our public schools, religious schools that better reflect the values of parents are becoming more popular. Since the State of Maine provides tuition assistance where secondary schools are not available, the parents should have the right to choose their child’s school. I thought liberals were about ‘choice.’

Still Searching For The Leaker

On Tuesday, The Western Journal reported that the investigation into the leaking of the abortion opinion draft from the Supreme Court is heating up.

The article reports:

Inside the Supreme Court, an investigation into the leak has now reached the point where law clerks are being asked to provide cellphone records and sign affidavits, CNN reported Tuesday, citing three sources it did not name.

Why are people inside the Court still leaking to CNN?

The article notes:

Chief Justice John Roberts met with law clerks after the leak. Each justice gets four clerks, and the prized spots that can be steppingstones to a high-profile career.

CNN estimated that in addition to the 36 clerks, others would have had access to the draft, totaling about 75 people in all.

The report said it was not clear whether other court employees were being asked to share cellphone records.

The court’s internal investigation is being led by the court’s marshal, Gail Curley.

Curley, a lawyer and former Army colonel, oversees the police stationed at the court’s building.

The article concludes:

Justice Clarence Thomas said the damage done to the court by the leak was severe.

“I do think that what happened at the court is tremendously bad,” Thomas said at a recent conference.

“I wonder how long we’re going to have these institutions at the rate we’re undermining them. And then I wonder when they’re gone or destabilized, what we will have as a country? And I don’t think the prospects are good if we continue to lose them,” he said.

If the pool of suspects is only 75 people, the investigation should be completed fairly quickly. I wonder why it has not been.

Challenging Admission Policies

On Sunday, The Daily Caller reported the following:

  • University of Michigan professor Mark Perry told The Daily Caller News Foundation that he filed a Title VI complaint over a program application at the University of South Carolina that was restricted to students of certain race and ethnicities. 
  • Following his complaint, the application was updated stating the program is  “Open to all Rising High School Juniors and Seniors in South Carolina,” but highlighted students “who are in support of the advancement of business students from diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply,” Perry told TheDCNF. 
  • “They’re so corrupt and they’re so unprincipled, that they do this all the time,” Perry said. “They might not even realize they’re violating federal civil rights laws or they know that it’s illegal, but they do it anyway because they’ve done it in the past (and) they’ve always gotten away with it because no one has ever challenged them.”

On Monday, The Carolina Journal reported:

The N.C. Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson and Virginia Lt. Gov Winsome Sears, each the first black lieutenant governor of their respective state, have joined forces to pen a brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Asian-American students suing Harvard and UNC-Chapel Hill. Carolina Journal was present at the Lieutenant Governor’s Mansion on May 19 at a press conference where the North Carolina Asian American Coalition (NCAAC) thanked Robinson for his support.

The students in the lawsuit accuse the institutions of discriminatory admissions practices, where they are held to a higher standard during consideration because of their race. The Robinson/Sears Amicus brief was filed May 9th.  

“While it can be argued that these policies had a role in helping many Americans overcome the persistent effects of historical and past discriminations in higher education, those effects are becoming less impactful the further we travel from the dark days of state-sanctioned discrimination,” said Robinson at the event. “Instead, they now function to unfairly discriminate against and deny opportunity to other ethnic and racial groups. Discrimination on the basis of race or ethnicity is immoral in all of its forms, and we can do better. We must do better.”

The nonprofit group Students for Fair Admissions filed the original suit in 2014, but when it was ruled in November 2021 that Chapel Hill could continue to use affirmative action in their admissions, the case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.  

College admissions should be based on merit. If a student is admitted because of race or ethnicity and does not have the ability to do college work, the student is being set up to fail. No one gains by doing that. I hope the lawsuit is successful and we go back to rewarding people who work hard and stop rewarding people or punishing people for something they have no control over.

Allowing Ordinary Citizens To Run For Office

On Monday, The Patriot Journal posted an article about a recent Supreme Court decision that will make it easier for the average American to run for political office.

The article reports:

All of America is waiting for the Supreme Court to release a number of ground-breaking rulings. Last week, the court revealed it was set to release “one or more” rulings today.

It seems they are holding off that one ruling and addressing other important cases. One of them came from Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, who was challenging a campaign finance law.

Cruz claimed the law was wrongfully punishing him. And the court, in a 6-3 ruling, backed the senator.

The ruling involved how much money a candidate could raise to pay off their personal debts after an election. In other words, if a candidate funded his own campaign, he could only pay himself back $250,000. Like it or not, in today’s elections, that is chump change. The Supreme Court agreed with Senator Cruz that the cap on how much a candidate could pay himself back was a limitation on free speech. The ruling was 6-3. The Supreme Court’s three liberal judges voted against removing the limit. A vote against removing the limit is a vote to keep the incumbents in power in Washington by making it more difficult for political outsiders to run for office.

The article concludes:

Although this might not seem relevant to us peons who don’t have nearly $250,000 to our names, this benefits anyone who wants to run for public office.

This ruling means someone can donate their own money to their campaign, without fear that they’ll go bankrupt. Because, after an election, they can use campaign funds to pay themselves back.

This ruling can help folks who want to run for public office but had previously avoided out of concerns for their livelihood.

The Impact Of The Leak

On Saturday, NewsMax posted an article featuring Justice Clarence Thomas’ comments about the leak of the Supreme Court draft of the abortion decision. Notice that somehow the leaker has not yet been identified.

The article reports:

Justice Clarence Thomas says the Supreme Court has been changed by the shocking leak of a draft opinion earlier this month. The opinion suggests the court is poised to overturn the right to an abortion recognized nearly 50 years ago in Roe v. Wade.

The conservative Thomas, who joined the court in 1991 and has long called for Roe v. Wade to be overturned, described the leak as an unthinkable breach of trust.

“When you lose that trust, especially in the institution that I’m in, it changes the institution fundamentally. You begin to look over your shoulder. It’s like kind of an infidelity that you can explain it, but you can’t undo it,” he said while speaking at a conference Friday evening in Dallas.

…Thomas, a nominee of President George H.W. Bush, said it was beyond “anyone’s imagination” before the May 2 leak of the opinion to Politico that even a line of a draft opinion would be released in advance, much less an entire draft that runs nearly 100 pages. Politico has also reported that in addition to Thomas, conservative justices Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett had voted with the draft opinion’s author, Samuel Alito, to overrule Roe v. Wade and a 1992 decision, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, that affirmed Roe’s finding of a constitutional right to abortion.

Thomas said that previously, “if someone said that one line of one opinion” would be leaked, the response would have been: “Oh, that’s impossible. No one would ever do that.”

“Now that trust or that belief is gone forever,” Thomas said at the Old Parkland Conference, which describes itself as a conference “to discuss alternative proven approaches to tackling the challenges facing Black Americans today.”

There is a need for confidentiality in Supreme Court negotiations and drafts. Justices need to be free to offer opinions, popular or unpopular, to reach a consensus on a decision. Knowing that drafts or notes from these deliberations are subject to being leaked could seriously impact the debates needed to rule on an issue. It bothers me that no one has yet been held responsible for the leak (only a small number of people had access to the draft), and the news reports do not see to be interested in finding out who the leaker is. This leak needs to be dealt with quickly and strongly in order to prevent future leaks.

Not Everyone Wants Roe v. Wade To Stay In Place

One of the things that seems to be getting lost in the debate over Roe v. Wade is what the consequences of overturning the law would be. Overturning Roe v. Wade will not make abortion illegal in America. Overturning Roe v. Wade will allow every state to set its own abortion guidelines. It may be that abortion may be illegal in some states, but American women will still have access to abortion. It may not be as convenient, and possibly that will cause women to rethink their options. Also, overturning Roe v. Wade will have a negative impact on the campaign coffers of most Democrats. That may be the reason this fight has gotten so nasty. Some of the Democrats in Congress want abortion up until birth to be legal in every state. Attempting to get a law passed to codify that did not go well.

On Wednesday, Townhall reported the following:

Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has repeatedly shown his ineptitude when it comes to leading Democrats in the upper chamber, and he did so again in spectacular fashion on Wednesday afternoon. In what he seems to think was a grand gesture to prove his party’s commitment to a woman’s (birthing person’s?) right to kill her unborn child only put Democrats on the record supporting a bill that’s more radical than Roe ever was.

After the unprecedented leak of a draft Supreme Court opinion signaling that Roe v. Wade would be overturned, Schumer jumped into action and called for the passage of a bill to supposedly “codify” Roe in federal law. But he once again failed to do the math among his own caucus or the Senate as a whole before holding what became nothing but a failed show vote to prove Democrats support radical abortion rights that go beyond what even most pro-abortion Americans support.

The vote to break a Republican filibuster and move to the final vote on the “Women’s Health Protection Act” came down 51-49, with every Democrat but one voting to move ahead — Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia joined all the Republicans to block the legislation from moving forward.

The article details the Senate bill:

In summary, the Democratic bill would make elective abortions legal across the entire country for all nine months of pregnancy (with “mental health” loopholes eliminating any real limitations), eliminating virtually all existing state-level restrictions (including lopsidedly popular ones), gutting conscience protections for healthcare workers who don’t want to participate in abortions, allowing non-doctors to facilitate the abortions, and likely forcing taxpayers to finance all of it.  Short of endorsing post-birth infanticide or instituting CCP-style compulsory abortions, it’s hard to imagine a more extreme piece of legislation on this issue.  Dressing this up as “codifying Roe” is astoundingly dishonest, yet it’s mindlessly — or perhaps not so mindlessly — repeated by journalists, ad nauseam.

I suspect Senator Schumer knew that the bill would fail. What the bill probably did was energize that small fringe of the Democrat party that supports unlimited abortion. I will admit that I have a hard time understanding why some people are fighting so hard for the right to kill a baby.

The Leak

On Monday, Politico reported that they have obtained an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito that strikes down Roe v. Wade. This is an unprecedented leak.

Here is what we actually know:

1. The draft is from February–it is a draft–not a final decision. Votes could change.

2. Whoever leaked this will be disbarred. If it is a Republican, the person will have a lifelong problem finding a job in the legal profession. If it is a Democrat, the person will be promised a lucrative career somewhere in Democrat politics.

3. This is a first. Up until now, everyone who worked in the Supreme Court bureaucracy respected the institution enough not to leak.

Here is my speculation:

1. This was leaked to energize the Democrat base for the mid-term elections–it is a desperate move.

2. Within days, Congress will move to pack the Court in an effort to intimidate the Justices and change the decision indicated in the draft.

Yesterday, Breitbart reported the following:

Turley (Jonathan Turley, criminal defense attorney and Shapiro professor of public interest law at George Washington University) noted that if Politico indeed obtained a true copy of the drafted opinion, “it is hard not to view this as a malicious act.”

“What is the motivation of releasing such a decision? The only intent of such a leak is to trigger a response from outside of the Court,” he continued. “…This draft is from February and the majority can shift on such opinions. However, the act of leaking such a draft opinion ranks as an original sin for judicial ethics.”

He surmised the leak could be an effort to “pressure the Court and push the legislation in Congress on a federal abortion law before the midterm elections. It will also likely renew the call for court packing.”

This will get heated, but the lives of Americas future generations are on the line.

Why Primary Elections Matter

On Thursday, Townhall reported that Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson has been confirmed as the 116th Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Three Republicans voted in favor of her confirmation–Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Mitt Romney of Utah. All of the Democrats voted in favor of her confirmation.

The article reports:

Just before the vote, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) called the occasion “a wonderful day, a joyous day, an inspiring day for the Senate, for the Supreme Court and for the United States of America.”

One of the narrowest Supreme Court confirmation votes in history, the final step in Judge Jackson’s path to a lifetime appointment on the highest court in the United States follows a much less chaotic set of hearings than Democrats and their leftist activists made Trump’s appointees go through. There were no disruptions inside the Senate Judiciary Committee’s hearing room as senators questioned Judge Jackson, no baseless accusations of sexual misconduct in anyone’s past, no demands for additional investigations, no public criticism of family members, and no Michael Avenatti-type characters. 

Instead, Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee engaged in respectful but tough questioning that sought to elicit information about Judge Jackson’s judicial philosophy. None was provided. 

Concerns about Judge Jackson’s stated belief that Critical Race Theory should “meld” with the Constitution to determine judicial decisions were brushed aside as obscure conspiracy theories. 

Choosing someone for a responsible position based on anything other than outstanding qualifications is foolish. I suspect Justice Jackson will make her presence felt on the Supreme Court fairly quickly. When we see criminals favored over victims and laws that have nothing to do with race declared as ‘racist,’ we will begin to understand the damage that has been done.

Hopefully all three of the Republicans who voted for confirmation will face a primary opponent the next time they are up for reelection.

Asking Valid Questions

There are some valid questions that need to be asked about Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to the Supreme Court. Hopefully these questions will be asked in a respectful way and answers will be given in a respectful way. I may be overly optimistic on this, but hope springs eternal. On Tuesday, Issues & Insights posted an article reminding us of the decorum (or lack thereof) of the Democrats in two recent hearings for potential Supreme Court Justices.

The article notes that the Democrats standards for nominees by Republican Presidents probably do not apply here:

…They also, no doubt, have jettisoned previous standards for Supreme Court nominees, including the ones put forth by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, such as that a nominee who can’t get 60 votes in the Senate shouldn’t be approved, nor can anyone “with a deep-seated ideology” because they wouldn’t have “a neutral legal mind.”

The article quotes a few questions asked of Justice Kavanaugh:

  • Who or what is Lowenbrau? A classmate? A secret party place? Is it related to the ‘Devil’s Triangle,’ or a type of ‘boofing’?
  • I don’t know if it’s “boufed” or “boofed” — how do you pronounce that?
  • Since you became a legal adult, have you ever made unwanted requests for sexual favors, or committed any physical or verbal harassment or assault of a sexual nature?
  • Have you ever passed out from drinking?
  • What do you consider to be too many beers?
  • Was there ever a time when you drank so much that you couldn’t remember what happened, or part of what happened the night before?
  • Do you believe Anita Hill?
  • Do you agree that it is possible for men to both be friends with some women, and treat other women badly?
  • Do you believe that climate change is happening and is threatening the air we breathe and the water we drink?”

What the Democrats have done to Republican President’s Supreme Court nominees in recent years is disgraceful. It would be a good idea for the Republicans not to follow that model and simply ask appropriate questions. I doubt the Republicans will get answers, but they can ask. It is bad enough that we have an ultra-liberal Supreme Court nominee chosen by a quota system, but hopefully she will answer questions honestly during her hearing.

 

 

Who Is Ketanji Brown Jackson?

President Biden has nominated Ketanji Brown Jackson to replace Stephen Breyer on the Supreme Court. Recently The Daily Wire posted an article about some of the items Judge Jackson has supported in the past.

The article reports Judge Jackson’s stand on various issues:

Abortion: Ketanji Brown Jackson represented NARAL Pro-Choice America, the League of Women Voters, and the Abortion Access Project of Massachusetts during her time in Boston’s Goodwin Procter law firm. In 2001, she helped write an amicus brief supporting a Massachusetts law that barred pro-life advocates from setting foot within six feet of any individual or vehicle that is within 18 feet of an abortion facility. Jackson’s record has earned her the fierce opposition of female leaders in the pro-life movement.

…Crime: Ketanji Brown Jackson served as vice chairman of the U.S. Sentencing Commission during the Obama administration. In April 2014, the commission propounded the “Drugs Minus Two” rule, which lowered the punishment for all drug-related crimes by two offense levels. The rule, which applied to an estimated 46,000 convicts, allowed judges to reduce convicts’ drug sentences by an average of two years and one month. “The result of the Sentencing Commission’s proposal will be to reward drug traffickers and distributors who possessed a firearm, committed a crime of violence, or had prior convictions,” wrote Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and then-Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) at the time.

Immigration: In September 2019, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson wrote a 120-page ruling (Make the Road New York v. McAleenan) that the Trump administration could not expand its use of “expedited removal”: that it could not fast-track the deportation of illegal aliens who had been in the country less than two years.

…Funding teen sex programs: When the Trump administration cut off $200 million in federal funding to the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program, which teaches children as young as 10 to use condoms and other contraceptives without emphasizing abstinence, Judge Jackson ruled that the funding must continue.

…Government bureaucracy and labor unions: In 2018, President Donald Trump issued three executive orders that would reduce the power of public sector unions and make it easier to fire employees for poor performance. They also ordered employees to spend at least 75% of their time on “agency business.” Trump limited the use of “official time,” which allows government bureaucrats to use government resources to conduct union business during working hours, at taxpayers’ expense.

He also said the government would not negotiate with labor unions on issues where it was not legally required to do so. In August 2018, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson issued a 119-page decision eviscerating those orders, denying most of Trump’s actions (American Federation of Government Employees v. Trump). She admitted that, while Trump’s action did not “specifically and directly conflict with individual statutory prescriptions” (i.e., he did not violate the law), it so “diminishes the scope of bargaining” that, it seemed to Jackson, Trump’s orders are no longer “a good-faith effort.” The D.C. Court of Appeals once again overturned Jackson’s decision, ruling that Jackson lacked jurisdiction to rule on the case.

Please follow the link to the article to read all of the notes on Judge Jackson’s previous decisions. She is not someone who is going to put the U.S. Constitution above her own political agenda. I suspect she will be confirmed, but that is not good news for America.

The Deep State Crosses Party Lines

In June I posted an article based on a post in The Conservative Treehouse about the appointment of Merrick Garland to the post of Attorney General.

The article in The Conservative Treehouse included the following:

The Democratic-controlled Senate voted 53-44 to approve Jackson’s (Ketanji Brown Jackson) nomination to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. All those in opposition were Republicans, with three voting with Democrats to approve the nomination.

Biden nominated Jackson, a Washington-based U.S. district judge, to the D.C. Circuit to replace Attorney General Merrick Garland on the bench. That appellate court has served as a springboard to the Supreme Court in the past, including for current Justices John Roberts, Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanaugh. (read more)

On Friday, President Biden nominated Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the Supreme Court to replace retiring Justice Breyer.

On Friday, Just the News reported:

Jackson, 51, sits on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and if confirmed by the Senate would become the first black female justice appointed to the nine-member high court. During earlier parts of her career, Jackson served as a clerk for Justice Breyer as well as a public defender, which made her resume appealing to Biden, who has voiced a desire to put more public defenders on the federal bench.

According to CNN, Jackson, received and accepted the offer from President Biden on Thursday night.

A decision Friday by the president would mark exactly two years since then-presidential candidate Biden promised to appoint the first black female justice to the court.

Biden said he would share his choice by late February. On Wednesday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said there would absolutely be a public announcement before March 1.

On Friday, The Washington Examiner reported:

The connection between Jackson and Ryan (former House Speaker Paul Ryan) is complex, as Jackson’s husband has a twin brother who is married to Ryan’s sister-in-law.

Ryan has also supported Jackson through previous nomination processes. When former President Barack Obama nominated her to a spot on the U.S. District Court for the D.C. Circuit in 2012, Ryan testified on her behalf at the confirmation hearing and spoke highly of her qualifications, urging his fellow GOP colleagues to confirm her.

Jackson, 51, was known to be on a short list of contenders the White House considered for the role and exhibits a unique background, having been a federal trial court judge for eight years without experience as a prosecutor or major corporate lawyer. She also sat on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals bench, where notably Justices Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanaugh served as judges before their promotions.

It will be interesting to see exactly what her impact on the Supreme Court will be if she is confirmed.

Retirements Have Consequences

Elections have consequences, and retirements have consequences. It has been no secret that President Biden appoints people based on race, gender or sexual orientation. He has specified numerous times that his choice to fill the vacant Supreme Court position will be a woman of color. That limits the field considerably.

On Tuesday, The U.K. Daily Mail reported the following:

President Joe Biden touted his appointment of Clinton confidant and Kamal Harris-bestie Minyon Moore to help him choose the first black female Supreme Court justice, but he never mentioned that she’s a Black Lives Matter board member, CRT promoter and supports the Defund the Police movement.

Moore’s deep blue political credentials go all the way back to Jesse Jackson’s 1984 and 1988 presidential campaigns.

But when the president announced that he would be setting up a board of advisors to help him with his SCOTUS pick and confirmation strategy he soft-peddled Moore’s history.

The article also notes:

He never mentioned her affiliation with BLM Global Network Foundation, which has consistently advocated for the dismantling and defunding of police departments across the country because they consider them racist institutions.

The foundation has found itself on the defensive after co-founder Patrisse Cullors resigned amid questions about the whereabouts of millions of dollars in donations.

The California Department of Justice demanded an accounting of the money. AmazonSmile, a charity network affiliated with the online commerce site, suspended donations to the organization.

BLM told Fox News that Moore ‘has been required to cease all involvement in matters pertaining to her work with Black Lives Matter while she is part of the White House confirmation team.’ 

The White House also failed to mention that Moore is tight with Columbia Law School professor and crucial Critical Race Theory advocate Kimberlé Crenshaw.

In a Facebook video Moore asks Crenshaw how to further spread the word on CRT to counter resistance, like Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s executive orders banning the teaching of the theory in public schools.

The Supreme Court was never apolitical. However, it would be nice if it at least gave the appearance of objectivity. Asking Minyon Moore to help with the choice of the new Supreme Court almost guarantees the the Supreme Court will be less objective–not more,

Gerrymandering In America

Gerrymandering is an American tradition (I didn’t say it was a good tradition–I just said it was a tradition).

According to Wikipedia (which I don’t generally recommend as a source):

The term gerrymandering is named after American politician Elbridge Gerry,[a][6] Vice President of the United States at the time of his death, who, as Governor of Massachusetts in 1812, signed a bill that created a partisan district in the Boston area that was compared to the shape of a mythological salamander. The term has negative connotations and gerrymandering is almost always considered a corruption of the democratic process. The resulting district is known as a gerrymander (/ˈɛriˌmændər, ˈɡɛri-/). The word is also a verb for the process.

Our voting district in Massachusetts looked like a shadow drawing of a sea horse. It was drawn like that to minimize the Republican votes in the area of Massachusetts that bordered northeast Rhode Island. Districts are drawn by state legislators and are usually drawn to give the advantage to whichever party is in power. There are less noble reasons for drawing districts, but the fact remains that the state legislators have the responsibility to draw those districts. Recently a case involving districts drawn by the Alabama legislature was decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

On Monday, The Epoch Times reported:

The Supreme Court on Monday halted an order requiring Alabama to redraw congressional districts ahead of the 2022 elections.

A lower court had determined in late January that the new Alabama congressional electoral map disadvantages black voters and likely violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act.

The lower court’s three-judge panel said the state should have two majority-black districts, instead of one. The congressional map, approved by Alabama’s Legislature last year, has one majority-black district.

Alabama’s delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives consists of six Republicans and one Democrat.

Alabama was given until Feb. 11 to create a new map, but it appealed the district court’s decision instead.

The Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling (pdf) grants a stay of the lower court’s order to have the districts redrawn.

“The stay order is not a ruling on the merits, but instead simply stays the District Court’s injunction pending a ruling on the merits,” Justice Brett Kavanaugh, joined by Justice Samuel Alito, wrote.

The legislature has the right to draw voting districts. The courts do not have the right to undo those districts and require new maps. The districts may not be drawn fairly in Alabama, but it is up to the voters in Alabama to vote for people in the legislature that will create districts that better reflect the population. There are other states where the courts are trying to control the redistricting process. This is an example of the courts attempting to usurp the job of the legislature. The courts do not have that right.

Wow! An Incredible Coincidence!

There have been a lot of incredible coincidences regarding the Biden family and those chosen for positions in the government under the Biden administration. The latest involves choosing someone to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created when Justice Breyer retires.

On Saturday, The U.K. Daily Mail posted an article about one possible choice to serve on the Supreme Court.

The article reports:

The Biden administration confirmed a U.S. South Carolina District Court judge backed by U.S. Rep. James Clyburn is among those considered to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. 

Michelle Childs, 55, was tapped for a promotion last month by President Joe Biden to the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, but the nomination has been postponed as she is now in consideration for the highest court in America after Biden vowed to nominate a black woman for the Supreme Court in February. 

It came as part of a deal Biden struck with Clyburn, who previously chaired the Congressional Black Caucus and offered his endorsement for Biden in 2020 with a caveat – that the then-candidate publicly pledge to place a black woman on the Supreme Court should he get the chance in his tenure. 

…Childs had earned criticism after her September 2020 decision to kill a measure in South Carolina’s new elections bill that would have tightened security on mail-in ballots, which was believed to tip the favor for Democrats. 

Before the 2020 election, the South Carolina legislature passed a bill allowing all voters to vote absentee regardless of their reason in a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but an amendment to remove a provision requiring a witness signature failed.

Childs upheld the law but struck down the signature requirement in a decisive victory for state and national Democrats who voted by mail at a higher rate than Republicans. 

It was swiftly overturned by the Supreme Court in early October.

Childs had also demonstrated a significant deference to Congress during her 2010 confirmation hearing the the South Carolina US District Court – indicating she may give federal lawmakers the benefit of the doubt on some occasions.

When asked by Senator Dianne Feinstein about her understanding of Congressional authority as given by the Constitution, the Childs had said: ‘With respect to any laws respecting your Congressional powers, I would presume that anything that you all are doing is constitutional and would approach it with that mindset, knowing that you would only enact laws that you have had due deliberance over and consider deliberation over.’ 

It sounds as if the judge has not read the Tenth Amendment. If you remember, the South Carolina primary was the turning point in winning the Democrat presidential nomination for Joe Biden. U.S. Rep. James Clyburn played a major role in that victory. Now it’s payback time.

 

Ending Racial Discrimination In College Admissions

On Wednesday, The New York Sun posted an article about a case the Supreme Court has recently decided to hear. The case involves Harvard University and its discrimination against Asian students based on their race.

The article reports:

The future of how America’s oldest university chooses its students will be decided not in faculty lounges in Cambridge, but in judicial chambers in Washington, D.C. As the Sun has reported, the high court looks set to decide the future of college and university admissions after elevating cases against Harvard and the University of North Carolina.

Mr. Bacow (Lawrence Bacow, President of Harvard University) struck a defiant note in response to the dramatic legal development, maintaining: “Our admissions process, in which race is considered as one factor among many, makes us stronger.” He promised to “defend with vigor” that approach against “narrowly drawn measures of academic distinction.”

Harvard’s admissions process is one of the nation’s most selective. Last spring, it extended offers to just more than 3 percent of applicants, making it a bellwether for how thick and thin envelopes (or their email equivalents) are sent out nationwide.

Mr. Bacow wrote that Harvard is “more than our numbers, more than our grades, more than our rankings or scores.” The question is whether just such a “holistic” approach runs afoul of federal anti-discrimination laws and the promises of the Constitution.

The article concludes:

To argue this, Students for Fair Admissions, the group mounting the legal challenges, points to Harvard admissions practices that penalized Asian-American students by giving them low marks on such metrics as “likability,” “courage,” and “self-confidence.”

While Mr. Bacow argues that Harvard’s admissions process reflects the reality that “race matters in the United States,” Students for Fair Admissions maintains: “The cornerstone of our nation’s civil rights laws is the principle that an individual’s race should not be used to help or harm them in their life’s endeavors.”

The University of North Carolina, which shares a Supreme Court docket with Harvard, fired back that the “true agenda” for Students for Fair Admissions is to “deny opportunity to qualified students.”

While both North Carolina and Harvard are undaunted, all eyes will now be on affirmative action’s suddenly very uncertain future.

As Martin Luther King, Jr., once stated, “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” If you truly want the students you admit to your college to graduate, you should admit them according to their academic record and their achievements–not on the basis of their race. Diversity is a nice idea, but how many of the students that colleges accept in the name of diversity have the academic skills to graduate in four years?