Tuesday morning the Supreme Court’s decision in Moore v Harper came down. It was a 6-3 decision written by Chief Justice John Roberts – which in part indicates its importance – in which when faced with a clear threat to American democracy this Court chose not to act. A more charitable analysis might be it split the baby. Split babies die.
At the heart of the case was the hair brain Independent State Legislature theory. It basically holds that a state legislature can do almost anything it wants to do and is not accountable to state or federal courts. The Court ruled that state legislatures’ redistricting activities are subject to oversight by state courts for state offices and federal courts in the case of federal offices. I live in North Carolina, where this case originated. Effectively the Court has maintained democracy at the federal level but not at the state level.
As an American I live in a democracy; as a North Carolinian I do not.
What percentage of Americans can name their state legislators? (It’s two in 49 of the states.) Do you really feel it is American to let them rule unchecked?
Let’s examine the 6-3 vote for a minute. Two of the three were no surprise: Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito. Rounding out the trio was Neil Gorsuch who was the first round draft choice in the right wing’s Trump Draft. I’ll let my readers take it from there.
Anyone who will say this decision and/or the Court is apolitical simply hasn’t been paying attention lately. The far right wing Republicans (and that’s the element that controls the GOP today) have an operating philosophy that once they gain power they will use that power to maintain that power regardless of the consequences.
I sum up the Court’s ruling as neglect by inaction; until and unless this Court is reformed that may well be the best we can hope for.
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