NOM: Gay Federal Prop 8 Judge Equals Automatic Bias
Let’s be totally honest here. The National Organization For Marriage (NOM) hates us. I don’t use the word “hate” lightly. But, as I wrote last week, a just-released Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll found that a large segment of our fellow countrymen, in fact, a majority of Republicans, donâ€™t want us to marry, teach their kids, receive benefits, or serve in the military. What else can you call that? Dislike? Uncomfortableness? No. It’s hate, pure, unadulterated hate. And now it’s entered the public forum surrounding the federal Prop 8 trial.
As it turns out, sixty-five year-old Vaughn Walker, the federal district court judge appointed in 1989 by President George H. W. Bush (41 – GWB’s father) and who was confirmed by the U.S. Senate unanimously, is unqualified — according to Brian Brown of the National Organization for Marriage — because he is gay.
Well, as you know, we gays stick together like peas in a pod. Like white on rice. Like birds of a feather. Like glue. Like… oh, please!
Bottom line is that Brian is throwing out the “gay card.” Because Walker is gay, Brown’s “thinking” goes, he therefore, is biased. If Brown rules against us, and says Prop 8 is constitutional, will Brian still cry “bias” and demand a retrial? Of course not. He’ll come up with some other tactic, some other way to claim “fairness.” Bias, methinks, is in the eye of the beholder.
Referring to a report Sunday in the San Francisco Chronicle, which, of course, as usual, he doesn’t link to, for fear his readers will actually read the truth and stop listening to his lies and hate, Brian writes,
“We have no idea whether the report is true or not. But we do know one really big important fact about Judge Walker: He’s been an amazingly biased and one-sided force throughout this trial, far more akin to an activist than a neutral referee. That’s no secret at all.”
“Protect Marriage, the defendants in this case are effectively being held hostage by Judge Walker and cannot really comment.”
You know those damned “activist judges,” who are only activists if they’re against you, Brian!
He then goes on to list a “series of rulings” he doesn’t like, and that, therefore, “prove” Walker’s “gayness” equals bias.
Walker is, as the Chronicle reports, openly gay, though he “has never taken pains to disguise – or advertise – his orientation.”
Melanie Nathan over at Lez Get Real writes,
“But who cares? We do not care here in San Francisco, mostly because we accept that being gay in high office is normal, being gay and abiding oneâ€™s oath is normal, being gay and applying law correctly and fairly is normal. As long as his religious views do not influence judgment, we do not care that Alito is a man, that Bader Ginsburg is a woman and nor do we care that Clarence Thomas is African America. We understand that their judgments are unlikely to be impacted by these facts. We also do not â€œoutâ€ Ruth Bader Ginsberg as a â€œstraight women.â€
Exactly. But that degree of fairness is beyond Brian’s grasp.
And never mind the fact that Walker was counsel to the United States Olympic Committee in a lawsuit that prohibited the use of the title “Gay Olympics” by the Gay Olympics. Never mind that he has been a federal judge for twenty years. The mere fact that he is gay makes him biased.
Nice try, Brian, but we’re not falling for that bull. Perhaps you think that a man can’t keep his personal beliefs in check — as your daily assault on the LGBTQ community proves — but we know that it is possible to be gay and fair at the same time. Pity you are incapable of such strength of character, or wisdom.
Brian closes by saying this:
“There’s only one saving grace to Judge Walker’s bias. It’s so big, and so obvious, not only the American public but the Supreme Court itself is already aware we have bias in the trial judge presiding.”
I’ll close by promising this:
The day will come when small men like Brian Brown are no longer allowed to ply their wares on their ignorant, unsuspecting followers. I, for one, will continue to fight their lies, their bigotry, their hate, as long as I live, until it is no longer necessary to do so.
Enjoy this piece?
… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.
NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.
Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.
SCOTUS ‘Surprise’ Voting Rights Decision Could – and Did – Have Big Implications for Democrats, Legal Experts Say
It’s being called a “surprise decision,” a “landmark win,” and a “a major victory for the Voting Rights Act (VRA),” but some legal experts are warning that heralding the U.S. Supreme Court’s Thursday decision as anything except upholding the status quo is a mistake, and other experts suggest it means the Court’s earlier rulings wrongly threw control of the House of Representatives to Republicans. Some experts say a Democratic-majority House in 2024 is now more likely.
In short, in its 5-4 decision in Allen v. Milligan, the Supreme Court ruled that the state of Alabama discriminated against Black voters, which make up a quarter of its population, by drawing congressional maps to exclude them.
Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern, who writes about law and the courts, exclaimed, “WHOA!” as he explained: “The Supreme Court’s final decision of the day is a 5–4 ruling that AFFIRMS the Voting Rights Act’s protection against racial vote dilution! Roberts and Kavanaugh join the liberals. This is a HUGE surprise and a major voting rights victory.”
Democracy Docket, the website founded by Marc Elias, the voting rights attorney who won 63 of the 64 court cases Donald Trump and his allies filed to contest the 2020 presidential election, also served up a similar response on social media, calling it “a massive victory for voting rights.”
READ MORE: Biden Launches Major Initiative to Protect LGBTQ Community Ahead of Massive White House Pride Celebration
On its website, Democracy Docket calls it “an overwhelming win for Alabamians, specifically Black voters, whose voting power was found to be diluted under the current congressional map. Importantly, the conservative Supreme Court did not make the drastic decision to strike down Section 2 of the VRA, leaving an important tool in voting rights litigation in place.”
It adds the Supreme Court’s decision in Allen v. Milligan “leaves Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) intact and, in a landmark win for voters, struck down the state’s congressional map. The majority opinion, written by Chief Justice John Roberts, is joined by Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson and joined in part by Justice Brett Kavanaugh.”
Democracy Docket also notes the decision “will have major positive implications for outstanding redistricting lawsuits.”
Stern agrees, writing: “It’s a boon to Democrats’ chances of retaking the House in 2024. The Supreme Court had blocked multiple lower court rulings striking down congressional maps that diluted Black voting power. At least some of those rulings should now be implemented.”
Democracy Docket adds: “The Court’s decision in Allen likely means that litigation challenging Louisiana’s congressional map can move forward and paves the way for a favorable outcome for Louisiana voters. Louisiana’s situation directly mirrors Alabama’s. In both states, voting rights advocates argued that a second majority-Black congressional district is needed to ensure compliance with the VRA. The Supreme Court paused Louisiana’s litigation pending a decision in Allen.”
READ MORE: Fox News Anchor’s Bad Week: Slammed for ‘Complete Lie,’ Accused of Making Up Story During Primetime Guest Hosting Gig
Dave Wasserman, U.S. House editor of the nonpartisan Cook Political Report calls the decision “a major surprise,” and says: “This could reverberate to LA, SC and/or GA, forcing creation of 2-4 new Black majority districts and netting Dems 2-4 seats” in the House.
Wasserman, known for his keen knowledge of congressional districts and iconic “I’ve seen enough” early and accurate predictions of House election races, offered this view of how the Court’s decision could impact current districts:
“The Alabama Republicans in most jeopardy owing to the SCOTUS ruling: Reps. Jerry Carl (R) #AL01, Barry Moore (R) #AL02 and Mike Rogers (R) #AL03. Moore could be squeezed the most in any map reconfigured to feature a second Black majority seat.”
University of Texas law professor Steve Vladeck, author of a book on the Supreme Court, “The Shadow Docket,” offers up a stinging reminder of how the Court has damaged voting rights and helped Republicans in the process:
“If you assume that additional majority-minority districts in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, & 1–2 other states would’ve been safe Democratic seats, then today’s #SCOTUS ruling strongly suggests that the Court’s 2022 shadow docket stays [decisions/rulings] wrongly gave Republicans control of the House.”
Professor of law Anthony Michael Kreis, pointing to Vladeck’s remarks, adds: “there’s a House majority built on discriminatory lawlessness.”
Also taking note of Thursday’s SCOTUS ruling: House Democrats. Axios’ Andrew Solender reports House Democratic Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries’ office is “inviting Dem[ocratic] congressional staff to a Friday briefing on recent Supreme Court cases, including the Alabama congressional map case.”
Meanwhile, the well-known NYU professor of law, Melissa Murray, is stepping in to properly frame reactions to what she sees as the Court’s “weak sauce” decision on the Voting Rights Act.
“Some initial thoughts on Allen v. Milligan,” she writes on Twitter. “Media is trumpeting this as a ‘victory’ for the Voting Rights Act. And it is. And I don’t want to be a turd in the punchbowl… but this is pretty weak sauce from this Court.”
READ MORE: Pence Presidential Launch Mocked for Suggesting Drag Queens Are Assaulting ‘American Values’ – With No Mention of Trump
Professor Murray says, “this doesn’t ‘strengthen’ the VRA. It preserves the status quo. And the status quo is that this Court has done an A+ job of hobbling the VRA over the last 10 years.”
Murray offers up some quick historical background.
“In 2013’s Shelby County v. Holder, it eviscerated the preclearance formula. The preclearance regime required states with a history of voting discrimination to first ‘preclear’ any changes to their voting rules and regs with the DOJ or a three-judge federal court panel.”
“The Court invalidated the preclearance formula on the ground that progress had been made and minorities were voting and blah blah blah,” she notes. “This progress narrative prompted RBG [the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg] to note in dissent that throwing out the preclearance formula was like throwing out your umbrella in a rainstorm because you weren’t getting wet. She was right.”
Murray also refers to a number of other cases along the way that weakened voting rights.
“So, yes,” she concludes, “today’s decision is a victory that maintains the status quo for Section 2 of the VRA. But it is cold comfort when one considers the way this Court through its decisions has actively distorted the electoral landscape and made true representative government more elusive.”
The Economist’s Supreme Court reporter Steven Mazie, calls Prof. Murray’s remarks, “Crucial zoomed-out context for today’s Voting Rights Act ruling. The 5-4 is a surprise, and it’s a victory—but after a long string of losses, today’s win amounts to…not losing YET MORE voting protections for people of color.”
The Nation’s justice correspondent, Elie Mystal, offers a bit of a more compact and down-to-earth response: “A way to understand what just happened with Roberts and Kav[anaugh] in the Voting Rights Case is that it’s not going to change much in terms of Alabama’s racist maps. This cost them little,” he says. “The *victory* is that these fools could have straight killed Section 2 of the VRA, but didn’t.”
'DISTURBING SURGE IN VIOLENT THREATS'
Biden Launches Major Initiative to Protect LGBTQ Community Ahead of Massive White House Pride Celebration
The Biden administration is launching a three-pronged plan to protect members of the LGBTQI+ community, including protecting their safety and civil rights, supporting LGBTQI+ children, and protecting students from book bans.
“Over a dozen states have enacted anti-LGBTQI+ laws that violate our most basic values and freedoms as Americans, and are cruel and callous to our kids, our neighbors, and those in our community,” the White House said in a statement Thursday. “The Biden-Harris administration stands with the LGBTQI+ community and has their backs in the face of these attacks.”
The initiative will be announced during President Joe Biden’s Thursday evening Pride event, which Reuters reports will be “the largest White House Pride Month celebration in history.” In a “a deliberate contrast to a cascade of Republican legislation and other attacks targeting LGBTQ+ people,” President Biden will host “thousands” on the White House South Lawn.
READ MORE: Pence Presidential Launch Mocked for Suggesting Drag Queens Are Assaulting ‘American Values’ – With No Mention of Trump
“This year we’re seeing a disturbing surge in violent threats against LGBTQ community organizations,” Biden White House domestic policy advisor Neera Tanden told reporters. “In too many parts of our country, LGBTQ Americans are being targeted for who they are, and that, simply put, is discrimination.”
President Biden has directed three federal agencies, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), to “launch the LGBTQI+ Community Safety Partnership. The Partnership will work hand-in-hand with LGBTQI+ community organizations to provide critical safety resources to ensure these organizations can remain safe spaces for the community,” the White House says. “In acknowledgement of the mistreatment that LGBTQI+ communities have often faced in interactions with law enforcement, the Partnership will also work to build trust between LGBTQI+ organizations and federal law enforcement agencies.”
Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Kristen Clarke, will chair regular meetings with the U.S. Dept. of Justice’s LGBTQI+ Working Group, focused on “issues related to discrimination against the LGBTQI+ community.”
The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services on Thursday will “issue a Behavioral Health Care Advisory on Transgender and Gender Diverse Youth to provide evidence-based practices for mental health providers. HHS will also issue a guidance to states and communities on using federal funding to support mental health services for LGBTQI+ youth.”
READ MORE: Republican Complaining It’s ‘Almost Impossible’ for Straight ‘White Guys’ to Get Appointed by Biden Has History of Bigotry
The administration points to the disproportionately large number of LGBTQI+ youth in the child welfare system, and notes that “far too often” they “experience trauma, including being exposed to so-called ‘conversion therapy,'” which Biden has spoken out against before. HHS says it “will issue a Behavioral Health Care Advisory on Transgender and Gender Diverse Youth to provide evidence-based practices for mental health providers. HHS will also issue a guidance to states and communities on using federal funding to support mental health services for LGBTQI+ youth.”
The White House also says it is working to “Shield LGBTQI+ kids and families from discrimination,” and “Address LGBTQI+ youth homelessness.” It also points to its efforts on “Protecting Americans from book banning,” and “Uplifting LGBTQI+ communities.”
In December, President Biden signed a law protecting same-sex and interracial marriages.
You can watch the video above or at this link, and read the entire White House announcement on its website.
READ MORE: Buttigieg: Republicans Are Targeting LGBTQ People Because They ‘Don’t Want to Talk About’ Their Own ‘Radical Positions’
House Freedom Caucus Republican: Trump Is Spinning Out of Control
A right-wing GOP lawmaker who has backed Donald Trump through both of his impeachments is sounding the alarm that the former president is becoming increasingly erratic which could put the 2024 general election at risk for his party.
According to a report from Politico, the closer Donald Trump gets to becoming the Republican Party’s 2024 presidential nominee the more some GOP lawmakers are growing worried that not only will they lose their shot at taking back the White House, but he’ll take down-ticket GOP candidates down with him.
The report also notes that the battle between Trump and Gov. Ron DeSantis is starting to turn off conservative voters and some are hoping that an alternative will rise from the squabble.
Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) was blunt about the GOP’s prospects as they stand today, telling reporters, “I’m worried about it,” and expressed fears that Trump will keep independent voters at a distance.
READ MORE: Trump lobs wild bribery claim against DOJ lawyer in all-caps midnight Truth Social rant
With a wide array of candidates having just appeared over the past weekend in Iowa, Rep. Zach Nunn (R-IA) claimed the infighting is turning voters — even Republicans — off.
“We’ll see if the two titans punching each other fires up the base, or if six months from now people are tired of both and ready for a third way,” Nunn explained before making tha blunt observation, “When you talk to Iowans, s–t-talking other candidates will not get you success. We don’t necessarily pick the winner, but we’re pretty good at smelling bulls–t.”
Kentucky Rep. Tom Massie (R), who has sided with DeSantis, is very worried about the possibility of Trump at the top of the ticket.
“I wish Trump were on Twitter. He’s in an echo chamber right now. And people don’t know how far he’s spun out from where he was,” he said in an interview. “The more visibility that we can help Trump get — when he attacks [his former White House press secretary] Kayleigh McEnany, for instance — the better.”
You can read more here.
Image via Shutterstock
- News2 days ago
‘Isn’t There a Beach in Mexico Waiting for You?’: Cruz Mocked for Claiming Garland Will Indict Trump Over SCOTUS Seat Loss
- News2 days ago
‘This Is It, Make No Mistake’: ‘Nihilistic Moron’ Trump Heading for Another Indictment Says George Conway
- News2 days ago
Jim Jordan Demands Merrick Garland Hand Over Documents Authorizing Special Counsel’s Trump Investigation
- News1 day ago
Pence Presidential Launch Mocked for Suggesting Drag Queens Are Assaulting ‘American Values’ – With No Mention of Trump
- News3 days ago
‘Recycling Stale and Debunked Burisma Conspiracy Theories’: Raskin Refutes Comer’s Claims as ‘Effort to Smear Biden’
- CRIME2 days ago
Double Bombshell: Mark Meadows and Trump’s Secret Service Agents Have Testified, NYT Reports
- News2 days ago
Buttigieg: Republicans Are Targeting LGBTQ People Because They ‘Don’t Want to Talk About’ Their Own ‘Radical Positions’
- BREAKING NEWS2 days ago
Will Santos Choose Jail? Judge Rules Names of Persons Who Provided His Half-Million Dollar Bond Must Be Made Public