Editorial: Electoral College lesson: The Supreme Court opens the door to states making the popular vote matter in electing presidents
The unanimous decision of the U.S. Supreme Court Monday that states can compel electors to vote as each state wants or have their vote voided (and be fined) might seem at odds with the Constitution, inasmuch as the original intent of the Electoral College was for the “most enlightened and respectable citizens” to select the president with “discretion and discernment.”But since the whole wise men thing envisioned by Founders like Alexander Hamilton and John Jay fell apart after George Washington’s term, it makes sense to formally reduce the College to an assemblage of mindless drones pledged to...
New York Daily News
With 12 in Texas on federal death row, Justice Department resumes executions
AUSTIN, Texas — The U.S. Supreme Court earlier this week declined to hear a challenge to the Trump administration’s revised federal death penalty practice, and the four men who appealed their executions are scheduled to be put to death this summer.The U.S. Justice Department has said additional executions will be set at a later date. The last federal execution, in any state, took place in 2003.None of the four cases is from Texas, but even if the Supreme Court had temporarily blocked the men’s executions, such a decision would not have had an effect on those on federal death row in the Lone St...
Editorial: Supreme Court abortion ruling shows proper restraint
Although Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court abortion ruling applies only to a restrictive law in distant Louisiana, the case shows how tenuous federal protections for abortion rights have become.The 5-4 decision swung on Chief Justice John Roberts, who explained his surprising support as abiding precedent. The decision tosses out a Louisiana law deemed likely to shutter all but one clinic in that state to get an abortion. But Roberts is no reliable ally for abortion rights. Just four years ago, he voted to uphold a Texas law that was nearly identical, and lost.In the new case, he cited the principle ...
The Seattle Times
Florida governor signs new law requiring parental consent for abortions
While his state continues to see skyrocketing numbers of new coronavirus cases, becoming a new epicenter in the outbreak, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis quietly signed into law a top priority for anti-abortion groups. Without making a public statement, DeSantis approved the new measure, which will force a minor’s parents to be involved in the decision if his or her child wants an abortion.Critics argue that the new law is unconstitutional, saying that the Florida Supreme Court struck down a similar parental-consent requirement in 1989 because it violated a right to privacy.That may not be a factor ...
New York Daily News
Missouri Supreme Court strikes down ban on Medicaid payments to Planned Parenthood
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The Missouri Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a Missouri law prohibiting Medicaid payments to abortion providers was unconstitutional.Planned Parenthood sued the state two years ago after Missouri lawmakers changed the state budget to exclude abortion providers and any related affiliates from Medicaid. It is the sole abortion provider in the state, with a clinic in St. Louis.In a 6-1 ruling, the court found that the Missouri Constitution does not allow for bills to cover more than one subject, and that including what the state should — as well as what it should not — fund...
The Kansas City Star
Michigan's high court set to consider questions on Gov. Whitmer's emergency powers
DETROIT — The Michigan Supreme Court has agreed to consider a Grand Rapids federal judge’s request to clarify the extent of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers, but not before a separate case on the same topic is decided by the state Court of Appeals.In a series of two orders Tuesday, the state’s high court ordered the Court of Appeals to rule on the Republican-led Legislature’s challenge of the governor’s emergency orders by Aug. 21 and agreed to review U.S. District Judge Paul Maloney’s questions on the same topic following Sept. 2 oral arguments.The decision was opposed by Justice Step...
The Detroit News
5 (more) times California fought Trump on immigration — and what happened
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California had two big victories this month with the Supreme Court ruling in favor of the state’s sanctuary laws and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival protections for immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children.From the 2020 Census citizenship question controversy to the Mexico border wall funding, here are five (more) times the state has challenged the Trump administration on immigration since 2016 and where the litigation stands now.BORDER WALLAnother victory occurred Friday when a federal appeals court in California ruled President Donald Trump’s diversion ...
The Sacramento Bee
St. Louis couple who pointed guns at protesters saw threat by 'bad actors,' lawyer says; protester says he feared 'bloodbath'
ST. LOUIS — Lawyers Mark and Patricia McCloskey, who pointed a rifle and pistol at protesters Sunday night in front of their St. Louis mansion, said through their lawyer Monday that they felt threatened by two “bad actors” who destroyed an iron gate to their private street and lobbed insults at them.“My clients, as melanin-deficient human beings, are completely respectful of the message Black Lives Matter needs to get out, especially to whites,” said lawyer Albert Watkins. He said the McCloskeys “acted lawfully” out of “fear and apprehension, the genesis of which was not race-related.”But one ...
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Jay Ambrose: The Supreme Court in danger
So now, the Supreme Court is in charge of the nation. It has scuttled the separation of powers while taking over the prerogatives of Congress and the executive branch. We have an oligarchy unaccountable to the rule of law while answering instead to confused ideologies, the mood of the moment, political snarling, assumed moral superiority and whims dispensing with credible analysis.As exemplified in two recent decisions, it is scary, truly scary, something that has shown its ugly face off and on for decades and yet seemed to have been cured with two excellent constitutionalists appointed as jus...
Tribune News Service
Kansas City police detective indicted in 2019 fatal shooting
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Jackson County grand jury on Thursday indicted a Kansas City police detective in the 2019 killing of a man who was shot while sitting in his pickup truck in his own backyard, Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker announced.Eric J. DeValkenaere, 41, was charged with first-degree involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action in the Dec. 3 killing of Cameron Lamb, 26. A warrant has been issued and bond was set at $30,000, according to court records.Baker announced the criminal indictment during a news conference at the Jackson County Courthouse. She said her office was “stymied” ...
The Kansas City Star