Editorial: Of prayers and plagues: What the Supreme Court got wrong about Gov. Cuomo's COVID restrictions
The unsigned opinion by the nation’s highest court got it wrong, insisting that restrictions placed on religious gatherings imposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo in New York’s COVID hot spots must be nullified, for they violate the First Amendment.The dissent by the Bronx’s Sonia Sotomayor got it right. The rules, capping gatherings at 10 people or less, are actually more generous for faith-based institutions than for any other type: “New York treats houses of worship far more favorably than their secular comparators.” How on Earth can that be an offense to the guaranteed freedom to exercise religion? ...
New York Daily News
Supreme Court may decide Austin billboard battle
AUSTIN, Texas — A three-year legal battle involving Austin’s ban on digital advertising on commercial billboards appears to be headed to the U.S. Supreme Court, an escalation by the city that could have rippling consequences throughout Texas and two other states.Austin is among roughly 90% of cities in Texas that prohibit digital billboards anywhere except for on the premises of the business being advertised. The prohibition is aimed at protecting the aesthetics of the city’s skyline and keeping motorists from being distracted by rotating advertisements for such things as whiskey brands and pe...
Cuomo calls Supreme Court decision blocking NY restrictions on religious gatherings a political statement
NEW YORK — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said a U.S. Supreme Court decision handed down Wednesday night blocking state officials from enforcing a cap on religious gatherings in coronavirus hot spots in Brooklyn and Queens is “irrelevant from any practical impact” because those areas are no longer designated virus hot spots.He said the decision, among the first that includes newly appointed Justice Amy Coney Barrett, was “really more an opportunity for the court to express its philosophy and politics.”“The Brooklyn zone no longer exists as a red zone. That’s mooted. So that restriction is not in e...
New York Daily News
What does California have to lose if undocumented immigrants are excluded from the census?
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — If The U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of President Donald Trump’s memorandumThe Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments Nov. 30Eric McGhee, a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, said the state is home to an estimated 2 million undocumented immigrants. If they aren’t included in the census formula, the state could lose congressional representation.Due to the state’s slow population growth and people moving out of the state, California is already expected to lose one congressional seat.With the potential omission of undocumented immigrants, it ...
The Sacramento Bee
Editorial: Judgeships should be awarded based on merit, not Ron DeSantis's political whims
A Florida Supreme Court justice once tore an incriminating piece of evidence into 17 pieces and flushed it down a toilet.That kind of foolishness prompted Gov. Reubin Askew to reform how judges are hired in Florida. He created Judicial Nominating Commissions, which would recommend judges based on merit, not politics and patronage.A half-century later, Ron DeSantis is continuing Rick Scott’s legacy of eroding the system’s integrity. Political ideology is now the key qualifier for judges.Since the governor and majority of legislators share that notion, they’re not likely to clean up this mess. I...
Editorial: The law must stand: With our without the individual mandate, the Affordable Care Act must remain on the books
With Justice Amy Coney Barrett joining its ranks, the Supreme Court now includes six self-declared conservative jurists who purport to abhor legislating from the bench. A mockery will be made of those claims today if that new supermajority seeks to invalidate the entire Affordable Care Act, passed by Congress in 2010, because Congress removed one of its components in 2017.Obamacare is gargantuan and complex. It sets up health insurance marketplaces for the self-employed, authorizes subsidies to make that insurance more affordable, encourages states to expand Medicaid, prevents insurers from di...
New York Daily News
Georgia leaders reject calls for special session to change runoff voting rules
ATLANTA — Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp said Tuesday he won’t call a special legislative session to tighten residency requirements for the Jan. 5 runoffs, despite pressure from some supporters of President Donald Trump to make it harder for new residents to cast their ballots in the consequential election.He and Georgia’s two top legislative leaders — Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan and House Speaker David Ralston — released a joint statement that threw cold water on the idea that lawmakers could overhaul voting rules this close to the twin runoffs that could determine control of the Senate.“Any changes to Ge...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
A Philly fight over faith and foster parents heads to the Supreme Court, pitting religious freedom against LGBTQ rights
PHILADELPHIA — A clash over whether the City of Philadelphia can require Catholic foster care agencies to consider placing children with same-sex couples heads to the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, providing the court’s newly expanded conservative majority its first opportunity to signal how it will interpret questions of religious liberty and LGBTQ rights moving forward.Set to be heard just a day after an election in which President Donald Trump has appealed to religious voters in part by touting his record of appointing conservative judges, the case pits the city against a charitable arm o...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Trump faces same legal peril as his associates if he loses election
NEW YORK — Trailing in the polls a day before the election, President Donald Trump faces the very real prospect of swapping the White House for the Big House.He’s directly implicated in campaign finance crimes and is under investigation by both Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance and New York State Attorney General Letitia James for alleged fraud in his business dealings. On top of that, he faces civil defamation lawsuits from women accusing him of sexual assault.Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, knows the stakes better than just about anyone in the president’s inner circle.“I ...
New York Daily News
Push to remove racist names draws support — and backlash
For more than two decades, Black residents of Rhode Island have argued that the official name of their state, “The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations,” connotes slavery and should be changed.It’s a “hurtful term” that “conjures extremely painful images for many Rhode Islanders,” said Democratic state Sen. Harold Metts, who traces his family lineage to a plantation in Virginia and is the only Black man in the Senate.Metts sponsored a bill to amend the state constitution to remove “Providence Plantations” from the official state name. Rhode Island voters will decide in November, bu...