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equal protection

Same-Sex Marriage: 85,600,000 and Growing

February 24, 2012

More than one-fourth of Americans now live in jurisdictions that recognize same-sex marriage.  Within five years more than half of Americans may live in such jurisdictions.  But there are legal barriers.

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DOMA Struck Down by District Court in Golinski Case

February 23, 2012

In a ruling issued yesterday, Judge Jeffrey S. White of the Northern District for the State of California struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause.  Judge White did not find that the Constitution requires the states to recognize same-sex marriage.  Instead he simply ruled that the federal government […]

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2011-2012 Supreme Court Term: Armour v. Indianapolis, Docket No. 11-161

February 19, 2012

One of the constitutional cases that the Supreme Court is currently reviewing is Armour v. Indianapolis, a tax case brought under the Equal Protection Clause. In 2001 the City of Indianapolis assessed Christine Armour and a group of 180 other homeowners a fee of $9,278 to pay for connection to city sewers.  Of this group, […]

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Rick Santorum's Call for a "Moral Impact Statement" Is Present in the Prop 8 Case

February 17, 2012

In his book "It Takes a Family" Presidential candidate Rick Santorum advocates preparing "moral impact statements" to evaluate changes in society, analogous to the requirement that there be an "environmental impact statement" before land use changes are undertaken.  I completely agree.

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Ninth Circuit Affirms District Court, Strikes Down Proposition 8

February 8, 2012

On Tuesday the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit handed down its decision in the case of Perry v. Brown, the Prop 8 case.  The Court of Appeals struck down Proposition 8, but it did so on narrow grounds.  It is unlikely that the United States Supreme Court will agree to review the decision […]

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House Briefs Against Same-Sex Marriage (2): Brief in Opposition to Motion for Summary Judgment

August 5, 2011

As reported in yesterday's post, the House of Representatives has filed briefs in the case of Windsor v. United States in federal district court in New York.  Yesterday's post described the House's Answers to Interrogatories.   Today's post summarizes the House's Brief in Opposition to Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment.

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Arguments for and against ENDA

July 7, 2011

ENDA (the Employment Nondiscrimination Act) is before Congress.  This law would make it illegal for employers to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

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Justice Department Brief in Golinski Case Opposing Defense of Marriage Act

July 3, 2011

On February 23, 2011, Attorney General Eric Holder wrote a letter to John Boehner, Speaker of the House of Representatives, informing him that the President had determined that his administration could no longer in good conscience defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.  The President promised to continue to enforce the Act, but […]

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Sixth Circuit Strikes Down Amendment to Michigan Constitution Prohibiting Affirmative Action

July 2, 2011

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has handed down its decision in the case of Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action v. Regents of the University of Michigan.  By a vote of 2-1, a panel of the Court of Appeals struck down Proposal 2 amending the Michigan Constitution insofar as the amendment prohibits state universities from adopting […]

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2010-2011 Supreme Court Term: Non-Decision in Flores-Villar v. United States

June 19, 2011

On June 13 the Supreme Court called it a tie in Flores-Villar v. United States.

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Politicial Gerrymandering: "The Same Tyrannical Principle"

June 9, 2011

The single greatest unifying theme in American constitutional history has been the struggle to fully recognize the political equality of every human being.  It is the highest manifestation of the principle "all men are created equal."  Political gerrymandering, just like dozens of other discriminatory electoral devices, tends to destroy that principle.

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Constitutionality of Tennessee "Equal Access to Intrastate Business Act"

May 22, 2011

The Tennessee Legislature has approved legislation that is intended to make it impossible for Nashville or other cities to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.  The legislature is attempting to frame the bill as "pro-business" rather than "anti-gay."  Will this tactic insulate the bill from constitutional attack?

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