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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Election Law Blog: The 5th Circuit, issued an opinion holding that Texas's voter identification law, one of the strictest in the country, violates section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. The bottom line is that the majority of the 5th Circuit has done what the panel opinion had originally held: there is a remand on the question whether Texas acted with a discriminatory purpose, but there is enough evidence of a discriminatory effect so as to render the Texas id law a Voting Rights Act violation. But, and this is a big but, the remedy is not going to be to strike the Texas voter id law as a whole, but instead to fashion some kind of relief that give people who have a reasonable impediment to getting an ID the chance to get one.


Actually it IS a Texas thing. Lots of bigots down there.

I beg you pardon. Texaphobia strikes again.

[footnote 2] Plaintiffs include: (1) the State of Texas; (2) Harrold Independent School District (TX); (3) the State of Alabama; (4) the State of Wisconsin; (5) the State of West Virginia; (6) the State of Tennessee; (7) Arizona Department of Education; (8) Heber-Overgaard Unified School District (Arizona); (9) Paul LePage, Governor of the State of Maine; (10) the State of Oklahoma; (11) the State of Louisiana; (12) the State of Utah; (13) the state of Georgia; (14) the State of Mississippi, by and through Governor Phil Bryant; (15) the Commonwealth of Kentucky, by and through Governor Matthew G. Bevin.
Texas has its share of idiots but I remind you on this issue idiots are spread all over the country, not just the named plaintiffs and certainly not just Texas. Should I bring up something about specks, motes, logs (or some s**t like that) and Kansas?

BTW, those plaintiffs don't represent the only entities and persons that have qualms about this issue. I'll remind you that gay marriage war succeeded on the backs of numerous battles over a long time. This war is in its infancy and this is but one of the first battles. Give it time. Let it percolate in the courts and the court of public opinion. Don't demagogue and judge the opposition too much too soon. It will happen, eventually, because LGBT equality is the right thing.

Second BTW, this case ain't got s**t to do with rights, the constitution or any other lofty rhetoric. It's a process case. It's going to the Fifth Circuit. How did that work out in the last process case from Texas?

That is not at issue here.

But it is. It's an element of your claim for an exemption from paying minimum wage. You bear the burden of proof on the issue.

The Christian Bible tells me I can hold slaves, provided they are from neighboring countries, and I do not rule over them ruthlessly.

Your first fault. Slavery is constitutionally prohibited, your religious belief, sincere or other wise, be damned. No court, ever, would allow you to practice slavery for any reason. Period.

I plan to only hire Mexicans, knowing my sincerely held religious beliefs legally exempt me from having to adhere to minimum wage laws.

Thank you for your admission. Your second fault. As I suspected, your belief is not sincere but contrived to avoid the minimum wage law. Even if your belief is sincere it is irrefutable that the government has a compelling interest in preventing slavery. No less than complete abolition is the least restrictive means of achieving that compelling interest. Your RFRA claim for an exemption from paying minimum wage to your Mexican slaves is denied.

My point in this little exercise is that RFRA claim are not easy. They present balancing issues to courts that are quiet difficult.

Contrast the case in the lede with your failure to carry the burden of proof with your contrivance;

Rost [the employer,] believes "that the Bible teaches that God creates people male or female." He believes that "the Bible teaches that a person's sex is an immutable God-given gift and that people should not deny or attempt to change their sex." Rost believes that he "would be violating God's commands" if he were to permit one of the Funeral Home's funeral directors "to deny their sex while acting as a representative of [the Funeral Home].

This would violate God's commands because, among other reasons, [Rost] would be directly involved in supporting the idea that sex is a changeable social construct rather than an immutable God-given gift." Rost believes that "the Bible teaches that it is wrong for a biological male to deny his sex by dressing as a woman." Rost believes that he "would be violating God's commands" if he were to permit one of the Funeral Home's biologically-male-born funeral directors to wear the skirt-suit uniform for female directors while at work, because Rost "would be directly involved in supporting the idea that sex is a changeable social construct rather than an immutable God-given gift."

Do I believe that s**t, no. Yet, where is the line drawn between what you or I or someone else believes and what the government can impose? I lean toward the government stepping lightly in areas like this, First Amendment and all that. Will the district court opinion prevail in the inevitable government appeal, I don't have a clue.

Native Indians have no say in anything.

They have as much "say" as any other citizen. What they don't have, like any other citizen, is the right to trespass, obstruct roadways, destroy private property, threaten bodily harm, fight law enforcement and engage in generally non-peaceful protest. See pages 2-5 of the TRO. www.google.com

Nor do they have a greater "say" about the transportation of hydrocarbons than any other citizen whether or not that transportation is across tribal lands. In fact, they have no legal bitch at all but they're certainly entitled to peacefully whine to their hearts content.

Dakota Access asserts it has obtained the necessary easements and rights of way to construct the Pipeline in North Dakota and the necessary federal, state, and local permits for the Oahe Crossing. Specifically, Dakota Access has obtained a Certificate of Corridor Compatibility and Route Permit from the North Dakota Public Service Commission, a Sovereign Land Permit from the North Dakota State Water Commission, and authorization from the United States Army Corps of Engineers pursuant to Nationwide Permit No. 12. See Docket No. 1, p. 4. It does not appear that the Defendants have any valid legal basis for interfering with Dakota Access' construction of the Pipeline. (emphasis added)

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