Trump Remade SCOTUS Into a Far Right Conservative Court. It Now Looks Ready to Allow Him to Harm Immigrants – and Democrats – Even More.
Conservatives are making great strides in disenfranchising immigrants and imposing a stranglehold on America’s electoral system with the implicit goal of ensuring Republican majorities despite the actual number of Democrats across the country.
Here’s how it works.
First, convince the U.S. Supreme Court to gut the Voting Rights Act.
Check. Completed in 2013.
Once that was done, Republican-majority states across the country enacted harsh voter ID laws and gerrymandered congressional districts to ensure fewer lower-income residents and fewer people of color – who historically vote in larger numbers for Democrats – were able to vote, or have their votes “count.”
These pie charts perfectly illustrate what’s going on:
This effort to maintain control of the state’s courts is the WI GOP’s last ditch effort to protect their gerrymander, which is horrendous by the way. This election, Democrats won 53% of the popular vote in Wisconsin but will only control 36% of the state legislative seats. 6/ pic.twitter.com/Ty1s6mNeW3
— Jiggy Athilingam (@jiggy_ca) December 2, 2018
And now, the Trump administration’s attacks on immigrants just appears to have won a major – and some say, unconstitutional – battle.
Despite having lied to Congress, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross appears to have been successful in achieving President Trump’s wish to add a citizenship question to the U.S. Census. The Commerce Dept. is in charge of the census.
Opponents of the question, which has never before been added to the constitutionally-mandated census taken every 10 years, rightly say it will scare immigrants from filling out the census, thus undercounting them.
Remember, the Constitution mandates every person – not just every citizen –shall be counted.
Given the Trump administration’s harsh roundups, detentions, and deportations of immigrants, why would anyone want to risk the thinly veiled threat that question poses?
Tuesday the U.S Supreme Court heard arguments about adding the citizenship question to the 2020 census, which is sent to every household in the country.
“Conservative U.S. Supreme Court justices on Tuesday appeared sympathetic toward a bid by President Donald Trump’s administration to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census, a plan opponents have called a Republican effort to deter immigrants from taking part in the population count,” Reuters reports.
Attempts to add the question were blocked by lower courts, so the Trump administration, as it repeatedly does, asked the Supreme Court to weigh in.
“Opponents have said inclusion of the question would cause a sizeable undercount by frightening immigrant households and Latinos from filling out the census,” Reuters adds, “fearful that the information would be shared with law enforcement. This would cost Democratic-leaning areas electoral representation in Congress and federal aid, benefiting Republican-leaning parts of the country, they said.”
Opponents are correct.
Experts are weighing in on today’s SCOTUS hearing:
Former U.S. Attorney:
Census data determines how voting districts are drawn, allocation of health care & education resources & plans for infrastructure. This is an important case-part of the Trump administration’s plan to harm immigrants & communities that support them. We should all pay attention. https://t.co/dPHvMGfyHa
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) April 23, 2019
Voting rights expert:
My quick takeaway from oral arguments in census case: same conservative justices who gutted Voting Rights Act now claim citizenship question needed to better enforce Voting Rights Act. What a farce. 5-4 decision upholding citizenship q would have devastating impact on democracy
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) April 23, 2019
Yesterday he warned:
Trump could rig American politics for next decade if SCOTUS upholds citizenship question on 2020 census. Would be as devastating to democracy as anything in Mueller report. Pay attention to oral arguments Tuesday https://t.co/FEBrVtZCrh
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) April 22, 2019
Supreme Court reporter for The Washington Post:
Supreme Court’s ideological divide on full display as #scotus takes up Trump administration’s census citizenship question. The court’s conservative majority seemed open to deferring to Commerce Secretary’s decision to add question https://t.co/EVC3ikTuOj
— Robert Barnes (@scotusreporter) April 23, 2019
SCOTUS reporter for The Economist:
It will be rich when a 5-4 majority ignores all evidence of Wilbur Ross’s shenanigans re the citizenship question & turns around to overturn Auer (and eventually Chevron) deference to administrative agencies.
— Steven Mazie (@stevenmazie) April 23, 2019
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Watch: Schumer Compares McConnell to Southern Segregationists for Blocking Voting Rights
On Tuesday, following Senate Republicans’ lockstep vote to block debate on voting rights, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) gave a thunderous speech comparing Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to the southern segregationists who fought the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
“Republican state legislatures across the country are engaged in the most sweeping voter suppression in 80 years,” said Schumer. “Capitalizing on and catalogued by Donald Trump’s big lie. These state governments are making it harder for younger, poorer, urban and non-white Americans to vote. Earlier today, the Republican leader told reporters that, quote, ‘Regardless of what may be happening in some states, there is no rationale for federal intervention.’ The Republican leader flatly stated that no matter what the states do to undermine our democracy — voter suppression laws, phony audits, partisan takeovers of local election boards — the Senate should not act.”
“The Republican leader uses the language and the logic of the southern senators in the ’60s who defended states rights, and it is an indefensible position for any senator, any senator, let alone the minority leader to hold,” said Schumer. “When John Lewis was about to cross that bridge in Selma, he didn’t know what waited for him on the other side. He didn’t know how long his march would be. And his ultimate success was never guaranteed. But he started down that bridge anyway. Today Democrats started our march to defend the voting rights of all Americans. It could be a long march, but it is one we are going to make.”
GOP Senators Orchestrate ‘Blockade’ of Key Biden Agenda Bills: Voting Rights Bill Killed, Infrastructure in Doubt
Republicans Tuesday evening killed debate on the For the People Act, a key component of Democrats’ agenda to protect democracy, expand and strengthen voting rights, and reduce the influence of dark money in elections. As Senators were voting on the motion to begin debate on the bill, news broke that the GOP Whip, Sen. John Thune of South Dakota had announced another critical piece of Democratic legislation, the infrastructure bill, was even further in doubt.
GOP Senators appeared to be orchestrating a complete and total shutdown of key legislation critical to President Joe Biden’s progressive agenda.
Democratic Majority Leader Schumer immediately denounced Republicans’ “blockade.”
Sen. Thune also said Republicans would oppose a slimmed down version of a voting rights bill:
Thune contradicts Blunt when asked just now if GOP leadership would come out against narrower measures like the VRA: “I suspect yes.”
“It just replaces a state’s sovereignty with the federal government, and that’s a bridge I don’t think our members are willing to cross.” https://t.co/mmVduM5fPH
— Andrew Solender (@AndrewSolender) June 22, 2021
60 votes were required to begin debate on the voting rights bill. The motion failed in a 50-50 vote. As voting was taking place GOP Minority Leader Mitch mcConnell could be seen huddling with other top Republican Senators including John Cornyn of Texas and John Kennedy of Louisiana.
The only option to pass the bill now would be for a simple majority of Senators agree to kill the 60-vote filibuster. Some are supporting a modification to 55 votes. Democratic Senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona had steadfastly refused to support killing the filibuster.
“This is a dark day in this country,” Al Sharpton said on MSNBC.
“This is a dark day for Republicans,” host Nicolle Wallace replied. “Republicans won’t just walk over norms, they will burn them down,” she told host Ari Melber during the handoff.
Voting rights expert Ari Berman weighed in, chastising the GOP:
Vote on For the People Act isn’t on legislation itself, but whether to start debate on the bill. Republicans are so afraid of democracy they won’t even allow a debate on how to fix it
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) June 22, 2021
‘Monster’: Internet Makes #AbbottHatesDogs Trend After Texas Governor Vetos Bipartisan Anti-Cruelty Bill
Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott is under fire for vetoing the Safe Outdoor Dogs Act, bipartisan legislation to protect dogs by making it illegal to tie them up with heavy chains outdoors, or leave them without water or shade. He criticized the bill as “micro-managing and over-criminalization.”
The legislation “would have expanded and clarified the state’s animal cruelty laws,” and “had the support of animal control officers, law enforcement agencies and organizations, county prosecutors, and advocates for animals, and it passed 28-3 in the Senate and 83-32 in the House,” as The Week reports.
Abbott increasingly has been in the national news, amid speculation he might run for the White House in 2024. He is also facing a possible primary from the right. As #AbbottHatesDogs trended on social media the Texas Republican governor posted a clip of his two dogs. It did not seem to help.
Peaches and Pancake ready to play.
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) June 22, 2021
Vetoing legislation to protect dogs does not seem to have helped his future prospects, as many social media users appear to think, but it did help former U.S. Congressman Beto O’Rourke’s fortunes as people started to post #BetoLovesDogs tweets.
I have to hand it to the governor. “Anti-voting rights, pro-animal cruelty” is a bold re-election message. pic.twitter.com/bw6JoqC1U2
— Julián Castro (@JulianCastro) June 22, 2021
Beto would never veto a dog cruelty bill.#AbbottHatesDogs
— Jake Lobin (@JakeLobin) June 22, 2021
What kind of monster is against protecting dogs? https://t.co/S4nsPYLaYG
— Aki Peritz (@AkiPeritz) June 22, 2021
Greg Abbott wants Texas to be the state where you freeze in the winter, roast in the summer, can chain up a dog with no shelter or water and force a 13 year old rape and incest victim to give birth to her grandfather’s baby.
— thearticles7777 (@thearticles7777) June 22, 2021
Nice try. You’re so obviously trying to play down the hate dog message you’ve sent.
— Bry (@irebry) June 22, 2021
Nice that they can play. Unlike the countless dogs who are chained up without food, shelter, or water in your state who you chose to keep in those conditions for no fucking reason.
Go fuck yourself, you dick jiggling toadstool. You don’t deserve dogs.
— Stefanie Williams (@StefWilliams25) June 22, 2021
“Texans don’t need that kind of micromanagement” is a hell of a statement considering the bills he did sign…
— Amanda Miller (@mrsmillerbio) June 22, 2021
While it sounds incomprehensible at first, this does make sense when you consider the fact that Gov Abbott doesn’t feel like humans should have drinkable water or adequate shelter either.
— cogito, ergo bibo. (@TheDillon13) June 22, 2021
This was one of 18 dogs chained up in a yard, & he was too scared to go near anyone. Nephew Dylan coaxed him out of his hiding place so a rescue group could take him to a cozier home.
Dogs know who the good people are. #AbbottHatesDogs pic.twitter.com/mFnsezsdym
— Lynne Kelly 🐘🐳 (@LynneKelly) June 22, 2021
— Nikki Smith (@kennahgramma) June 22, 2021
— Witch Queen of Angmar | ♿️🏳️🌈 (@themadkatter1) June 22, 2021
— Kelly ツ (@kellwoohoo) June 22, 2021
Governor Abbott vetos cruelty to animals bill, cares less about dogs, cares less about his freezing citizens in the winter or sweltering citizens in the summer and only thinks about using their tax money to pay for a wall, to please Trump.#AbbottHatesDogs pic.twitter.com/rTIymiGicg
— Rick Ocean 🇺🇲🇳🇴 #Resister (@RickOceanMusic) June 22, 2021
— Kelly ツ (@kellwoohoo) June 22, 2021
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