Discrimination Supreme Court Voting Rights

Ketanji Brown Jackson Gives Her SCOTUS Brethren A History Lesson During Tuesday Oral Arguments

During oral arguments Tuesday at the U.S. Supreme Court, Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson gave her right-wing brethren a much-needed history lesson on voting rights.

The case before the high court is Merrill v. Merrigan, which challenges Section 2 of Voting Rights Act. A lower court ruling struck down an Alabama legislative map which is considered to be discriminatory to people of color who live in the state.

Justice Jackson weighed in, making it clear that she isn’t going to sit quietly and let conservatives strike down more of the Voting Rights Act.

“I don’t think that we can assume that just because race is taken into account that that necessarily creates an equal protection problem, because I understood that we looked at the history and traditions of the Constitution and what the framers and the founders thought about, and when I drilled down to that level of analysis, it became clear to me that the framers themselves adopted the Equal Protection Clause, the 14th Amendment, the 15th Amendment, in a race-conscious way. That they were, in fact, trying to ensure that people who had been discriminated against, the freedmen, during the Reconstruction period, were actually brought equal to everyone else in society.”

Indeed, those two amendments, which were ratified after the Civil War, were meant to protect the rights of black citizens who had once been enslaved in Confederate states, Jackson continued, and she supported her assertion with statements made by the very legislators who crafted them.

“I looked in the report that was submitted by the Joint Committee on Reconstruction, which drafted the 14th Amendment, and that report says that the entire point of the amendment was to secure rights of the freed former slaves. The legislator who introduced that amendment said that, quote, ‘Unless the Constitution should restrain them, those states will all, I fear, keep up this discrimination and crush to death the hated freedmen.'”

But Justice Jackson was far from finished reminding her colleagues of why such laws are necessary today just as they were during Reconstruction.

“They drafted the Civil Rights Act of 1866, which specifically stated that citizens would have the same civil rights as enjoyed by white citizens. That’s the point of that act, to make sure that the other citizens, the Black citizens, would have the same as the white citizens.

“They recognized that there was unequal treatment. People based on their race were being treated unequally and, importantly, when there was a concern that the Civil Rights Act wouldn’t have a constitutional foundation, that’s when the 14th Amendment came into play. It was drafted to give a constitutional foundation for a piece of legislation that was designed to make people who had less opportunity and less rights equal to white citizens.”

Jackson concluded her comments by eviscerating the argument being made attorneys for the state of Alabama:

“So with that as the framing and the background, I’m trying to understand your position that Section 2, by its plain text is doing that same thing, is saying that you need to identify people in this community who have less opportunity and less ability to participate and ensure that that’s remedied, right? It’s a race-conscious effort, as you have indicated. I’m trying to understand why that violates the 14th Amendment, given the history and background of the 14th Amendment.”

GOP U.S. Senate Viral Video Voting Rights

Viral Video Shows Democratic Senator Slamming Susan Collins For Her Hypocrisy On Voting Rights

Georgia Democratic Sen. Jon Ossoff took all he could take during a debate of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and slammed his Republican colleague, Susan Collins of Maine, accusing her of being a hypocrite when it comes to what she says versus what she does when it’s time to move legislation forward.

On Wednesday evening, shortly before Collins joined her GOP colleagues to keep a filibuster in place that prevented voting rights legislation from moving forward, Ossoff stood and excoriated Collins for voting to reauthorize the Voting Rights Act in 2006 but now shirking her responsibility to the memory of John Lewis:

“Abraham Lincoln must be turning in his grave to hear the senators from the Grand Old Party, the party of abolition and emancipation and reconstruction, echoing the states’ rights rhetoric of Dixiecrat segregationists to oppose federal voting rights legislation.

“I speak for the state of Georgia when I say do not invoke Congressman Lewis’ name to signal your virtue while you work to erode his legacy and defy his will.”

It quickly became clear that Ossoff had struck a nerve, as Collins suggested the Georgian might have violated a rule that bans senators from imputing “to other Senators any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming a Senator.”

Collins also tried to suggest that the length of the John Lewis Act makes her unable to support it, which begs the question: Is Sen. Collins, at age 69, unable to read more than a page or two without dozing off?

Here’s what Collins said on the matter:

“I’m not sure that the senator from Georgia was even born in 1965. I voted enthusiastically and I did say that about the Voting Rights Reauthorization in 2006, and surely my colleague is not confusing that bill, which was five pages long … with the bill that is before the Senate tonight, which is 735 pages long.” 

What a pathetic excuse for wimping out. But it shouldn’t surprise anyone because this is the very same Susan Collins who believed Brett Kavanaugh when he assured her would protect a woman’s right to choose. Now Kavanaugh and his five right-wing extremist buddies on the Supreme Court are preparing to render Roe v. Wade a thing of the past, leaving women unable to make their own reproductive choices.

So spare us the whining and outrage, Sen. Collins. You sold what was left of your soul a long time ago.


Elections GOP Voting Rights

Mitch McConnell Gets Cold Busted For Offering A ‘Poison Pill’ That Would Kill Voting Reform

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said something very surprising last week, suggesting that he was willing to discuss reforming the Electoral Count Act, the federal law that governs the way Congress certifies presidential elections:

“Aside from all the other things they are discussing, this is something that’s worth discussing,” McConnell said on Wednesday. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, echoed that view to NBC News. There may even be enough support across the aisle to overcome a filibuster in the closely divided Senate.

But as Hayes Brown notes in an op-ed he wrote for MSNBC, Democrats would be foolish to fall for McConnell’s bait and switch:

While changes to the law’s vague, easily twisted language are important to prevent another round of the chaos that former President Donald Trump inspired last year, McConnell knows better than anyone that reforming the Electoral Count Act absent “all the other things” Democrats want in terms of voting rights would be a new coat of paint on a house that’s about to collapse.

While McConnell wants us to believe he’s interested in election reform, the truth is very different from the words he speaks in front of the cameras:

In June, he even said that voting rights is “not a federal issue.” Case in point: The Democrats’ other main voting rights bill, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, would reinstate the provisions the Supreme Court has decimated. The bill has the support of only one Republican in the Senate — and it isn’t McConnell.

The good news is that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has made it clear he’s not going to fall for McConnell’s trick:

He’s promised to “debate and consider changes to the rules” by Jan. 17 if Republicans continue to stand in the way of the two voting rights bills.

But McConnell isn’t likely to budge anytime soon. And he knows that all he needs is one — one Democrat to remain willing to put his promise of “bipartisanship” ahead of voting rights. It’s up to Schumer to make sure that nobody breaks ranks in the name of a short-term victory

McConnell doesn’t want people to vote unless they happen to be guaranteed votes for Republicans. That means he wants every white person (especially conservatives) to get out and vote in every election while at the same time he and other members of the GOP work behind the scenes to make it more difficult for people of color and the poor to cast a ballot. They know that expanding the voting franchise and making it easier to vote would relegate their party to permanent minority status.

Nice try, Mitch, but we’re not falling for your lies.

GOP Voting Rights WTF?!

Greene: Anyone Who Moves From A Blue State To A Red One Shouldn’t Be Allowed To Vote

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) is now saying the quiet part out loud when it comes to voter suppression.

No longer content to try and deny the right to vote to people of color or those who live in economically-depressed areas of the country, Greene is calling for red states to deny the right to vote to anyone who moves from a blue state.


Newsweek reports on Greene’s absurd proposal:

If red states and blue states were to “divorce” each other, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene called it possible that people who move from a Democratic state to a Republican state would be barred from voting for a temporary “cooling off” period.

California’s seen an influx in people moving out of the state and many have opted to go to Texas and Florida, where residents can get more bang for their buck. However, some, including Greene, have complained that those who are leaving California are bringing their political beliefs with them and potentially shifting the political landscape.

On Wednesday, the Georgia congresswoman posted on Twitter that “brainwashed people” who move from California and New York need a “cooling-off period.” Her comment was in response to a Twitter user who wrote he supports discriminating against Democratic transplants, including restricting their ability to vote for a period of time. He also wrote that they should have to “pay a tax for their sins.”

Greene’s suggestion was immediately slammed as the words of a traitor by Rep. Reuben Gallego:

Others then joined the debate on social media:

Hey, Marj: How about we put everyone who played any role in the January 6 insurrection (i.e. Donald Trump, Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz, YOU) in prison for about 20 years and never let them cast a ballot again?


Elections Voting Rights

Mike Lindell Spent His 4-Day ‘Voter Fraud’ Webcast Hawking His Sh*tty Pillows

So here we are, the day after Thanksgiving/Black Friday 2021, and according to many among the pro-Trump contingency, the Donald was supposed to be “reinstated” as president by now.

That’s what MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell has been saying ever since President Joe Biden was declared the winner of the 2020 presidential election over a year ago, despite an insurrection at the U.S. Capitol which was intended to terrify members of Congress so much that they’d refuse to certify the electoral votes and instead hand the election back to the states.

As HuffPost notes, Lindell has been saying that Thanksgiving 2021 would be a key date and he would be broadcasting for 96 straight hours to let the world know that the Supreme Court had accepted a lawsuit he filed and was on the verge of reversing the will of the voters:

Despite months of promising to file an explosive lawsuit that would “pull down” the 2020 presidential election results and reinstate Donald Trump to the White House, pillow-monger Mike Lindell has instead turned his election-fraud-athon into a four-day sales promotion.

“I want to show you guys some Black Friday specials that we’re doing with MyPillow,” Lindell said Friday morning, rattling off sales for pillows and sheets. “That’s the lowest price in history.”

He then went off on a long explanation of why his sheets were made overseas from Egyptian cotton rather than U.S.-grown cotton, with “Save up to 66% off over 110 products” displayed on-screen below him.

“We’re doing stuff that’s over the top to put stuff on sale for Black Friday,” Lindell said.

Lindell had no serious plan for getting Trump back in office. His ruse was all about grifting; an attempt to sell his shitty, overpriced pillows and other subpar merchandise to the Trump faithful who worship the failed, one-term president with more fervor than they do Jesus himself.

Lindell is desperate to sell more pillows in part because ever since he began his election lies and lawsuits, lots of retailers have refused to carry his merchandise:

MyPillow products have been dropped by major retailers including Bed Bath & Beyond and Kohl’s after CEO Mike Lindell repeated false claims of voter fraud in the presidential election.

Wayfair and Today’s Shopping Choice have also stopped selling products made by his Minnesota-based company.

The MyPillow huckster and former crack addict is also facing enormous defamation lawsuits from voting machine makers Dominion and Smartmatic. Dominion is seeking $1.3 billion in damages.

Donald Trump is not going to be returning to the White House. Not now and not next Thanksgiving either. He’s a loser, a fraud, a con man, a liar, and an accused sexual predator.

Lindell, on the other hand, is a loser, a fraud, a con man, and a liar. No wonder he and Donald are such good buddies.