'A new and troubling low': Alabama Republicans’ Supreme Court defiance blasted by legal expert

'A new and troubling low': Alabama Republicans’ Supreme Court defiance blasted by legal expert
The U.S. Supreme Court in 2022 (Creative Commons)

In a 5-4 ruling in June, the U.S. Supreme Court infuriated Alabama Republicans by striking down a GOP-drawn voting map as racially discriminatory. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh, both right-wing Republicans, shocked legal experts when they sided with the High Court's three Democrat-appointed justices — Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson — and agreed that the map discriminated against Black voters.

The four dissenting justices were Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch and Amy Coney Barrett, all appointed by Republican presidents.

The High Court ordered Republicans in the Alabama State Legislature to create two heavily Black districts. But University of Baltimore law professor Kimberly Wehle, in a scathing article published by the conservative website The Bulwark on September 12, argues that the Alabama Republicans are behaving shamelessly by dancing around a Supreme Court ruling.

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"Not only is the legislature knowingly violating the Voting Rights Act and multiple federal court orders directing it to create two, not one, majority-black voting districts," Wehle writes. "But in a new and troubling low for Republicans, the state's GOP lawmakers have also openly and admittedly flouted a June 8, 2023 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court holding that two black districts, not one, are required by law."

Alabama Republicans, Wehle adds, behaved "like belligerent toddlers" when they "responded to the High Court's ruling with another plan containing only a single Black district."

"Alabama is correct to anticipate that this right-leaning Court will issue more rollbacks of longstanding constitutional protections on the basis of race and other immutable characteristics," Wehle laments. "But the fact that Alabama is pushing that outcome while at the same time testing the legitimacy of the Court's precedent is pretty scary."

READ MORE:Federal court blocks Alabama’s congressional map, orders new lines drawn

Read Kimberly Wehle's full article for The Bulwark at this link.

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