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#1 Jun 26 2013 at 7:01 AM Rating: Good
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Yesterday the SCOTUS struck down part of the Voter's Rights Act freeing up states to enact voting changes without prior approval from the feds.

Do you agree with the SCOTUS decision?

Why or why not?

Today the SCOTUS is expected to announce it's decision about DOMA and gay marriage laws.

What do you think will be the outcome?

What are you hoping for the outcome to be?
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#2 Jun 26 2013 at 7:19 AM Rating: Excellent
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I can agree that perhaps the formula for determining regions affected by the VRA should be updated since the 1960's. But the ruling effectively kills the entire Act by allowing Congress to just drop the ball on ever updating it (which they will never do) so I don't think anyone believes this was anything but a backdoor way fro the conservative wing to kill the entire Act. I don't know how much flexibility the SCotUS has in creating rulings so I'll decline from throwing out suggestions on how it would have been better. I see more argument for saying the VRA should have stood as is since Congress has the option of changing the formula and has declined to. They voted on it and approved it within the last 10 years so you could say the formula is effectively only 10 years old. That makes more sense to me than killing the entire law on a technicality.

My predictions on the SSM cases are the same as most people watching it: DOMA overturned, Prop 8 returned to the state without judgement, effectively overturning it without setting a national precedent.

Edit: I shouldn't say the "entire" Act as some aspects might be untouched but the major relevant portion of regions required to gain approval before screwing with the voting abilities of the people there is effectively dead.

Edited, Jun 26th 2013 8:23am by Jophiel
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#3 Jun 26 2013 at 7:33 AM Rating: Good
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I'm sure the DOMA stuff will be fun to watch in the next few weeks, but the real circus will start during the elections. It's like this ruling is specifically to get ratings for the twenty-four hour news stations.
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#4 Jun 26 2013 at 8:12 AM Rating: Excellent
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5-4: DOMA is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.

http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions...2-307_g2bh.pdf
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#5 Jun 26 2013 at 8:24 AM Rating: Good
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Bardalicious wrote:
5-4: DOMA is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.

http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions...2-307_g2bh.pdf
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#6 Jun 26 2013 at 8:26 AM Rating: Good
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It'll be overturned on appeal because of the Second Amendment.
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#7 Jun 26 2013 at 8:30 AM Rating: Good
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I haven't had time to read the opinions, but I thought Roberts would be on the side striking it down over the whole States Rights issue. I hadn't followed it closely, but his questioning initially seemed to be heavy on that part of the debate, from what I remember.
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#8 Jun 26 2013 at 8:42 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
My predictions on the SSM cases are the same as most people watching it: DOMA overturned, Prop 8 returned to the state without judgement, effectively overturning it without setting a national precedent.

Score one for conventional wisdom.
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#9 Jun 26 2013 at 8:44 AM Rating: Good
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So far it's been a good morning.

- TX lawmarkers didn't get away with fraud after all
- DOMA is dead
- A friend just found out her book is getting published
- Another friend just found out she's approved to close on her first house

Now if my fourth round job interview goes well this afternoon, it'll officially be the best day of 2013 so far for me.
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#10 Jun 26 2013 at 8:50 AM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:


Edit: I shouldn't say the "entire" Act as some aspects might be untouched but the major relevant portion of regions required to gain approval before screwing with the voting abilities of the people there is effectively dead.


I suppose the good that can come out of this is the SCOTUS will have to set precedent on individual voting issues as being discriminatory or not. It just takes a long time for that to happen. In the meantime, many will be disenfranchised.

I think what the republicans aren't fully realizing is that, at least with voter ID laws, friendly fire could take as big a toll on voter turn-out as those being selectively discouraged from voting.

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#11 Jun 26 2013 at 8:56 AM Rating: Good
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Necrotic fingers. Better to amputate the whole hand than to lose the whole arm or life. It's these little things we must do in order to keep those filthy Irish from voting.
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#12 Jun 26 2013 at 9:00 AM Rating: Good
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Elinda wrote:
I think what the republicans aren't fully realizing is that, at least with voter ID laws, friendly fire could take as big a toll on voter turn-out as those being selectively discouraged from voting.


Old frail republicans vote by absentee ballot, not in person having to worry about new voter ID laws.
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#13 Jun 26 2013 at 9:06 AM Rating: Decent
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I suppose the good that can come out of this is the SCOTUS will have to set precedent on individual voting issues as being discriminatory or not. It just takes a long time for that to happen. In the meantime, many will be disenfranchised.

Most (if any) challenges won't get to SCOTUS. DOJ will be forced to bring probably hundreds of Section 3 challenges, how that will shake out remains to be seen.
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#14 Jun 26 2013 at 9:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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Elinda wrote:
Yesterday the SCOTUS struck down part of the Voter's Rights Act freeing up states to enact voting changes without prior approval from the feds.

Do you agree with the SCOTUS decision?

Why or why not?


Yeah, I'm fine with that. The system was aged, ok fine. People down south say they're not going to cause a ruckus and say they're over this whole racist thing, ok fine. The law gets rewritten, the feds return in 2 years and end up re-instituting a similar system in locations where problems arise, only this time with more legitimacy.

Elinda wrote:
Today the SCOTUS is expected to announce it's decision about DOMA and gay marriage laws.


DOMA is gone, good riddance to bad rubbish and such.


Edited, Jun 26th 2013 8:40am by someproteinguy
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#15 Jun 26 2013 at 9:30 AM Rating: Excellent
Have they decided on Prop 8 yet?
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#16 Jun 26 2013 at 9:33 AM Rating: Excellent
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CNN wrote:
A little more detail on exactly what the Proposition 8 decision by the Supreme Court means: By dismissing the case, the decision will allow for the lower court decision in California that allows for same-sex marriage to be reinstated. The appeals court stay on the decision will be lifted.
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#17 Jun 26 2013 at 9:39 AM Rating: Good
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Catwho wrote:


Now if my fourth round job interview goes well this afternoon, it'll officially be the best day of 2013 so far for me.
Fourth round?!

Man, I hope they're hiring you to stream-line their decision-making procedures.
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#18 Jun 26 2013 at 9:43 AM Rating: Excellent
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#19 Jun 26 2013 at 9:51 AM Rating: Good
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Elinda wrote:
Catwho wrote:


Now if my fourth round job interview goes well this afternoon, it'll officially be the best day of 2013 so far for me.
Fourth round?!

Man, I hope they're hiring you to stream-line their decision-making procedures.


At least I don't have to fly 2,000 miles out this time.

It's a meet and greet at the office I'd actually be working at, four miles away.

The first two interviews were via phone. It went something like this...

Round 1: Are you a good conversationalist and not an @#%^? Ok, pass.

Round 2: Are you making this stuff on your resume up? No? Ok, pass.

Round 3: Can you get along with the people that would be your managers? Yes? Ok, pass.

Round 4: Can you get along with the people that will be your colleagues?

They're dragging it out because last time they tried to fill this position, they were all ready to sign the papers and then he decided to stay in ATL.
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#20 Jun 26 2013 at 10:01 AM Rating: Excellent
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Catwho wrote:
Round 1: Are you a good conversationalist and not an @#%^? Ok, pass.

Round 2: Are you making this stuff on your resume up? No? Ok, pass.

Round 3: Can you get along with the people that would be your managers? Yes? Ok, pass.

Round 4: Can you get along with the people that will be your colleagues?


Smiley: eek

They must be dragging it out, how is that not 4 questions in a single interview?
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#21 Jun 26 2013 at 10:29 AM Rating: Good
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I'd rather go through a long dragged out interview process and hear a "yes" than have that crammed into a single hour to hear "no" at the end.

Last week was the gauntlet - four hours. Today is just two hours.
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#22 Jun 26 2013 at 10:37 AM Rating: Good
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At least it isn't a two plus hour question and answer session where the best possible outcome is "congratulations, you're now on a list with several dozen other people for a promotion that will only open up if someone else vacates that position first." Nothing like a multi-year wait for succeeding in my immediate future. Smiley: laugh
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#23 Jun 26 2013 at 10:41 AM Rating: Excellent
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someproteinguy wrote:
The law gets rewritten, the feds return in 2 years and end up re-instituting a similar system in locations where problems arise, only this time with more legitimacy.

Right. The House is going to be all over writing new legislation protecting the voting rights of minorities in the south.

I expect it to be filed immediately after the "government funded abortions for everyone" legislation they're working on.
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#24 Jun 26 2013 at 10:41 AM Rating: Good
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At least it isn't a two plus hour question and answer session where the best possible outcome is "congratulations, you're now on a list with several dozen other people for a promotion that will only open up if someone else vacates that position first." Nothing like a multi-year wait for succeeding in my immediate future. Smiley: laugh


The Publisher's Clearing House of Job applications?

Edit:
Damn it Joph, now I gotta go back and edit in a quote.

Edited, Jun 26th 2013 12:42pm by TirithRR
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#25 Jun 26 2013 at 10:47 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
someproteinguy wrote:
The law gets rewritten, the feds return in 2 years and end up re-instituting a similar system in locations where problems arise, only this time with more legitimacy.

Right. The House is going to be all over writing new legislation protecting the voting rights of minorities in the south.

I expect it to be filed immediately after the "government funded abortions for everyone" legislation they're working on.

Maybe it was just foolish of me, but as jumpy as they all are about voter fraud you'd think there'd be room in there for some kind of punitive reaction to cases where it's been shown to happen. Locations where there's evidence of voter fraud get enhanced scrutiny for a few years or something.
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#26 Jun 26 2013 at 10:51 AM Rating: Good
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someproteinguy wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
someproteinguy wrote:
The law gets rewritten, the feds return in 2 years and end up re-instituting a similar system in locations where problems arise, only this time with more legitimacy.

Right. The House is going to be all over writing new legislation protecting the voting rights of minorities in the south.

I expect it to be filed immediately after the "government funded abortions for everyone" legislation they're working on.

Maybe it was just foolish of me, but as jumpy as they all are about voter fraud you'd think there'd be room in there for some kind of punitive reaction to cases where it's been shown to happen. Locations where there's evidence of voter fraud get enhanced scrutiny for a few years or something.

I think you misunderstand their intentions. Do they care about voter fraud? [sarcasm]Yes[/sarcasm]. Do they care about voter's who don't vote for them not being able to vote because of restrictive voting ID laws? Hahaha...
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#27 Jun 26 2013 at 10:53 AM Rating: Good
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TirithRR wrote:
The Publisher's Clearing House of Job applications?
That or a Ponzi/Pyramid scheme.
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#28 Jun 26 2013 at 11:01 AM Rating: Decent
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Maybe it was just foolish of me, but as jumpy as they all are about voter fraud you'd think there'd be room in there for some kind of punitive reaction to cases where it's been shown to happen

Voter fraud only consists of people who shouldn't be allowed to vote (darkies and the like) voting. People not voting is never fraud, it's states rights.
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#29 Jun 26 2013 at 11:10 AM Rating: Excellent
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someproteinguy wrote:
Maybe it was just foolish of me, but as jumpy as they all are about voter fraud...

They don't give a shit about "voter fraud". They care about using "voter fraud" as an excuse to create barriers to low income (esp. minority) voters such as requiring state IDs, eliminating polling places in low income neighborhoods, making it harder to vote absentee, making it harder to vote without a permanent place of residence, etc.
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#30 Jun 26 2013 at 1:08 PM Rating: Good
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Wonder how it'll effect the six deployed overseas people that still vote.
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#31 Jun 26 2013 at 1:39 PM Rating: Decent
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#32 Jun 26 2013 at 3:52 PM Rating: Default
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My only concern is the definitions and applications of "constitutional" vs. "unconstitutional". We obviously know what they are, but why did it take so long for something openly practiced to be deemed "unconstitutional". Nothing has changed over the years, but time and this seems to be a trend in other topics.

Why does it take so much energy, time and money to declare something unconstitutional when the facts are in your face? This is the same gripe that I have had before and will continue to have until we just start calling a spade and spade and stop wasting resources.
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#33 Jun 26 2013 at 4:28 PM Rating: Excellent
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Because the only ones who can say something is or is not constitutional is the Supreme Court, and they can only do it when presented with a case challenging the legality of an existing law?

There are a sh*tton of laws that are probably unconstitutional, but until a legal challenge against them goes all the way to the top, even if it's obvious to everyone that it's a bad law, no one can do anything about it except repeal it with another law.
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#34 Jun 26 2013 at 4:57 PM Rating: Excellent
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Keep in mind that the primary arguments in the DOMA case weren't "poor gays" but rather states' rights arguments. Determining the line between federal and state issues isn't always obvious or a simple matter of "calling a spade a spade".
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#35 Jun 26 2013 at 5:04 PM Rating: Default
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Catwho wrote:
Because the only ones who can say something is or is not constitutional is the Supreme Court, and they can only do it when presented with a case challenging the legality of an existing law?

There are a sh*tton of laws that are probably unconstitutional, but until a legal challenge against them goes all the way to the top, even if it's obvious to everyone that it's a bad law, no one can do anything about it except repeal it with another law.


As I said in a previous thread, if the law were "Women can't work" (as once before), it wouldn't have lasted long enough to be annotated in history. Regardless whether what you say is accurate or not, it displays a weakness in the system.

So, basically, it comes down to if enough of the "right" people care about it as opposed to it actually being constitutional or not. At that point, it becomes subjective as opposed to objective. Things are only "unconstitutional" if it goes against certain people's beliefs and things are only "constitutional" when it favors certain people's beliefs.

The constitution has become a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people. As a result, we waste time in manners such as these. Hopefully, everything will be completed in this "movement", so we don't have to waste more resources on such topics.


Or will we? Given the turn on the Voting Rights Act, it only supports my argument even more. We need more objectivity and less subjectivity.
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#36 Jun 26 2013 at 11:17 PM Rating: Good
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Almalieque wrote:
The constitution has become a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people.

Become implies it was ever any different. Politics is why we have a bicameral legislature.
#37 Jun 27 2013 at 1:51 AM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
Keep in mind that the primary arguments in the DOMA case weren't "poor gays" but rather states' rights arguments. Determining the line between federal and state issues isn't always obvious or a simple matter of "calling a spade a spade".

You're absolutely right, but if I understand the argument correctly, that only substantiates my point.

First, forgive me as I'm no longer in the US, so I don't have the full coverage as I did. The message that I received was that DOMA was deemed "unconstitutional". So, unless I'm missing something, it's either unconstitutional because it was federally mandated or unconstitutional due to the restrictions of marriage. Given that we have a ton of federal mandates, my assumption is that 'twas the latter.

So, if the main arguments used were that it should be a state's decision on the rulings of marriage, then it completely contradicts the aforementioned. That essentially says, "The restrictions of marriage is unconstitutional, but only at the federal level, it's ok at the state level"

I'm sure that I'm missing something, so please expound.

Allegory wrote:
Almalieque wrote:
The constitution has become a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people.

Become implies it was ever any different. Politics is why we have a bicameral legislature.


'Twas indeed different. I'm not a history buff, but you're allowing the negative connotation of "politics" skew reality. There is a difference between laying the foundation of rules and regulations for a nation vs purposely interpreting the aforesaid rules in a way to bolster personal motives. I won't deny that anyone ever did the latter during the creation and amendments of our constitution; however, it has become more of a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people.
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#38 Jun 27 2013 at 3:23 AM Rating: Good
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Almalieque wrote:
however, it has become more of a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people.

Care to offer something more than conjecture toward that point"?
#39 Jun 27 2013 at 4:16 AM Rating: Default
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Allegory wrote:
Almalieque wrote:
however, it has become more of a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people.

Care to offer something more than conjecture toward that point"?


See post #37.
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#40 Jun 27 2013 at 4:26 AM Rating: Good
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#41 Jun 27 2013 at 6:03 AM Rating: Excellent
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In before multiple pages of people trying to argue with Alma while he just points back to a previous post that doesn't say sh*t.
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#42 Jun 27 2013 at 6:30 AM Rating: Default
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His Excellency Aethien wrote:
In before multiple pages of people trying to argue with Alma while he just points back to a previous post that doesn't say sh*t.


Don't expect me to waste time and energy because you're either too lazy and/or not intelligent enough to read and comprehend a simple post. As always, point out specifically what you don't understand and I'll address your concern. Else, you'll simply get a reference to the already established answer.
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#43 Jun 27 2013 at 6:46 AM Rating: Excellent
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Alma wrote:
I won't deny that anyone ever did the latter during the creation and amendments of our constitution; however, it has become more of a political tool as opposed to outlining rules and supporting the people.


You see where you said that and then didn't give any arguments or anything at all to prove that what you are saying is based in reality? And then Allegory pointed that out and somehow you thought pointing him back to the post was a good idea.

Edited, Jun 27th 2013 2:47pm by Aethien
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#44 Jun 27 2013 at 6:55 AM Rating: Excellent
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Almalieque wrote:
First, forgive me as I'm no longer in the US, so I don't have the full coverage as I did. The message that I received was that DOMA was deemed "unconstitutional". So, unless I'm missing something, it's either unconstitutional because it was federally mandated or unconstitutional due to the restrictions of marriage. Given that we have a ton of federal mandates, my assumption is that 'twas the latter.

So, if the main arguments used were that it should be a state's decision on the rulings of marriage, then it completely contradicts the aforementioned. That essentially says, "The restrictions of marriage is unconstitutional, but only at the federal level, it's ok at the state level"

The issue is that marriage has traditionally been left to the states to define. The argument made as that the federal government was infringing on the traditional domain of the state by effectively saying "You can call that marriage but it's not and we won't honor it". Without exceptional cause to justify the intrusion (as in miscegenation), that provision of the law was struck down.

That it was "marriage" is somewhat secondary except that you'd need something within the state's sphere to act as a catalyst for the case. For an opposite example, the SCotUS struck down provisions from Arizona's state laws regarding immigration enforcement; immigration being the traditional sphere of the federal government and the state not having the right to interfere.

Neither case was argued so much about "marriage" or "immigration" but rather "How far can the federal/state infringe into the working of the other?" If not for the social aspect, conservatives would be hailing this as a huge win for state's rights.
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#45 Jun 27 2013 at 7:33 AM Rating: Excellent
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Am I the only one that has a good chuckle whenever someone argues that amendments shouldn't be changed, or interpreted based on 1800s culture?
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Am I the only one that has a good chuckle whenever someone argues that amendments shouldn't be changed, or interpreted based on 1800s culture?

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#47 Jun 27 2013 at 7:58 AM Rating: Good
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No. In related news, homosexual couples in the State of Tasmania can now adopt children, although they still can't marry. Baby steps, baby steps [heh], but I think the right to @#%^ up children just like any other couple is an important one. Also, our new-old Prime Minister is very pro-gay marriage. This might not move things any faster here, since the MPs vote as individuals in a "conscience" vote on the issue, and most present MPs are socially conservative, but it does help the "tone" of the public argument.
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#48 Jun 27 2013 at 8:03 AM Rating: Excellent
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No. In related news, homosexual couples in the State of Tasmania can now adopt children,
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#49 Jun 27 2013 at 9:59 AM Rating: Excellent
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His Excellency Aethien wrote:
You see where you said that and then didn't give any arguments or anything at all to prove that what you are saying is based in reality?
No no no, you know you can't skip ahead like that. Just check back in 15 pages once someone manages to wring an answer out of him.
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#50 Jun 27 2013 at 12:48 PM Rating: Default
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Jophiel wrote:
The issue is that marriage has traditionally been left to the states to define. The argument made as that the federal government was infringing on the traditional domain of the state by effectively saying "You can call that marriage but it's not and we won't honor it". Without exceptional cause to justify the intrusion (as in miscegenation), that provision of the law was struck down.


It was a pretty predictable decision, doubly so given the current make up of the court. Obviously, I disagree with it, but that's a whole different discussion (which we've had many times). It'll be interesting to see how the federal government responds to this in the future. The ruling does not resolve the issue of taxpayers in one state paying for federal benefits for marriages that their state does not recognize. Either we'll see all states recognize gay marriage (which is presumably what the SSM advocates want), or we'll see a movement to eliminate or change the requirements for the relevant federal benefits (which could shake out a number of different ways).

The prop 8 ruling/dismissal, while also not totally unexpected, is disappointing most because it effectively means that the referendum process has no high court constitutional protection. IMO, that's a far far bigger issue than the specific marriage issue in this case.
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#51 Jun 27 2013 at 12:55 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
The ruling does not resolve the issue of taxpayers in one state paying for federal benefits for marriages that their state does not recognize.

Probably because it's not an issue. It's federal tax money being disbursed through the federal system. If your state is creating a barrier to accessing that money, that's an issue with the state, not the federal government.

Out of your outcomes, I'd see if far more likely that states are forced to remove that barrier than a massive change in apportioning the money. Really though, I expect the real (federal) outcome from that avenue to be nil and married SS couples in states legally recognizing the marriage will get the benefits and those who don't won't. And they'll either continue to petition the states or move to friendlier climates.


Edited, Jun 27th 2013 1:56pm by Jophiel
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Belkira wrote:
Wow. Regular ol' Joph fan club in here.
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