On March 29th, Arkansas passed, by a vote of 28-7, HB1570 (PDF of bill text) (also known as the "SAFE" Act), which primarily prohibits "gender transition procedures" for minors, defined in the bill like so:
>"Gender transition procedures" means any medical or surgical service, including without limitation physician's services, inpatient and outpatient hospital services, or prescribed drugs related to gender transition that seeks to:
>(i) Alter or remove physical or anatomical characteristics or features that are typical for the individual’s biological sex; or
>(ii) Instill or create physiological or anatomical characteristics that resemble a sex different from the individual’s biological sex, including without limitation medical services that provide puberty-blocking drugs, cross-sex hormones, or other mechanisms to promote the development of feminizing or masculinizing features in the opposite biological sex, or genital or nongenital gender reassignment surgery performed for the purpose of assisting an individual with a gender transition.
There is contention between proponents of the bill (such as Republican lawmakers), who claim such practices to be problematic, and medical organizations (among other groups) who recommend such treatments be accessible to trans youth (source):
>During Monday’s Senate vote, one of the bill’s Republican sponsors, state Sen. Alan Clark, described gender-affirming treatments as “at best experimental and at worst a serious threat to a child’s welfare.” He argued the bill would “protect children from making mistakes that they will have a very difficult time coming back from.”
>“I know that their parents are looking for any kind of answer, and my heart truly goes out to them,” he said. “But this is certainly not the answer.”
>But major medical organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics and [the Endocrine Society](htt
With the term winding down, what better way to fill in the gaps than about upcoming lower court appeals/trials?
What better way than this case that came across my twitter timeline.
Matthew Jones v. Xavier Becerra
An appeal from the denial of a preliminary injunction in an action alleging that California Penal Code section 27510, as amended by SB 1100 and SB 61, violates the Second Amendment rights of 18 to 20 year-olds. [3:19-cv-01226-L-AHG]
The panel took an an unusal step of asking for additional answers to these questions:
What is the original public meaning of the Second Amendment phrases: “A well regulated Militia”; “the right of the people”; and “shall not be infringed”?
How does the tool of corpus linguistics help inform the determination of the original public meaning of those Second Amendment phrases?
How do the data yielded from corpus linguistics assist in the interpretation of the constitutionality of age-based restrictions under the Second Amendment?
Appointed By: Donald Trump
Dissented from denial in Young v. Hawaii
Appointed By: Donald Trump
Wrote the opinion in Duncan holding LCM bans are unconstitutional.
Did NOT join any dissenting from denials in Young v. Hawaii
Sidney Stein (SDNY, sitting by designation)
Appointed by: Bill Clinton
No second amendment opinions from my quick search
This argument will be live streamed on Youtube on May 12 at 9AM PST
The district court found the following:
Opted for intermediate scrutiny over strict scrutiny BECAUSE " [the law] does not categorically ban the possession of arms used for self-defense."
The judge used the ill fated Heller quote to deny the injunction: “However, the Court noted that this right is "not unlimited"
On an unrelated note, check out this passage from the panel that might impact the... keep reading on reddit ➡
Your 18-minute Friday report in 4539 words.
##round 2: Parliament approves main electoral code reforms
In addition to the earlier reforms that replaced Rating system with Proportional, the Parliament discussed the main parts of the reform.
At least 4 public debates with 90 minutes each will be mandatory, with at least one of them being held between frontrunners. "We held the first pre-election public debate in 2018 on H1 TV. The amendment will make it mandatory," said an MP.
Another amendment is about campaign finance transparency relating to foundation money.
Individual parties will need to win 4% instead of 5% to enter Parliament. Requirement for coalitions becomes stricter with a point increase to 8% for 3 parties, and 10% for 4 parties.
Citizens in foreign countries still cannot vote but "hopefully it will be addressed later," said an MP.
Parties will have to deposit ֏7.5m instead of the current ֏10m to participate in elections.
Reform will ensure the size of Parliament does not expand. The Constitution mandates at least 101 seats plus 4 for ethnic minorities. The likelihood of more seats being added reduces.
The party that won the most votes will attempt to form a coalition first. Within 2 weeks they will try to join with other parties in the way to have at least 52% of MPs. If they fail, the smaller parties will have a week to form a coalition with 52% MP.
Opposition LHK MP complained that the ruling party did not discuss the final version of the bill before holding a vote. Ruling MP responded, "you and I spoke about this behind closed doors; the changes were technicalities." Another opposition MP Babajanyan said their party participated in the discussions and they support the reforms.
Bipartisan groups, including opposition and ruling parties, took part in discussions for these reforms that began years earlier. Several amendments were made since then.
Parliament voted 82-0 to approve the bill.
[Unless I misunderstood, these changes will be impossible to implement before upcoming snap elections because of lack of time.]
https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/213249 https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1051523.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1051525.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1051526.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1051527.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1051528.html https://armenpress.am/arm/news/1051530.html https://factor.am/367918.html https://youtu.be/tV1lmUXAtSE https://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/213201 https://arme... keep reading on reddit ➡
The Hill: According to the Founders, all federal gun restrictions are unconstitutional | TheHill. https://thehill.com/opinion/civil-rights/545847-according-to-the-founders-all-federal-gun-restrictions-are
I have been studying SCOTUS cases regarding districting relative to racial discrimination. I am a non-layer (and non-scholar)... and struggling to wrap my head around what the court is saying in the many decisions that have spawned from Thornburg v. Gingles. Below is the core question I am trying to answer for myself, if anyone out there is an expert in this stuff, I would love to get some guidance…
Since admission to the US in the 1817, Mississippi’s Black population has ranged between ~35-60%, presently at ~40%. Including Senators, the state’s post-civil war Congressional delegation has had 6-10 members, presently at 6. Excepting Reconstruction, the state has never had more than one Black member of Congress, having first elected a single Black Representative in 1987.
Meanwhile 2 U.S. Code § 2c. dictates that states must have “a number of [Congressional] districts equal to the number of Representatives” and that “no district [may] elect more than one Representative.”
I speculate that should (a) Congress remove that law and (b) Mississippi started electing its Representatives “at large” in a single multi-member district (the entire state) then (c) the state would no longer have any Black members of Congress. To wit: If the state elected its Representatives as they do their Senators, the entire delegation would look like the state’s Senators - e.g. all white men.
Question: In this hypothetical would SCOTUS rule Mississippi’s use of “at large” unconstitutional? If so on what basis (Equal Protection or VRA, or both/neither)?
"A charity representing the Jehovah’s Witnesses claims that a B.C. privacy law violates religious freedoms and is seeking to have the legislation struck down as unconstitutional. The Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada, a charity that represents the Jehovah’s Witnesses Christian denomination in Canada, filed a lawsuit in B.C. Supreme Court after two former congregants lodged complaints with the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia. The former congregants, one in Grand Forks and one in Coldstream, had repudiated the Jehovah’s Witnesses and had contacted the privacy commissioner after the congregations in the small communities had denied them access to personal information. When they had withdrawn as Jehovah’s Witnesses, the congregations had set up committees of three elders to provide the former congregants with any possible spiritual assistance and otherwise confirm their decisions to repudiate. The committees each created a “confidential religious summary” of the matters and securely stored them in the local Kingdom Hall used by the congregations. The congregations refused to release the documents to the former congregants. In the case of one former congregant, the privacy commissioner appointed an investigator and in January a decision was made to proceed to an inquiry, although the inquiry has not yet commenced. In the other case, an investigator has not yet been appointed, but a lawyer for the charity said in an interview Tuesday that there should be no inquiries in either case. “Our position is we shouldn’t go there,” said Jayden MacEwan. “This is really the government interfering with religious practice." #jworg #jw https://www.cultnews101.com/2021/04/jehovahs-witnesses-challenge.html
To start off, I believe that an elected body should try to accurately reflect the wishes of voters as a whole. In the last Canadian election the Conservative party, despite winning a plurality of votes, won 30 fewer seats in the house of common than the Liberals, who formed a minority government. While I support the Liberals, I think this result was unfair.
The US is arguably in an even worse position, as FPTP has choked out all third parties and has arguably made domestic politics extremely partisan, with large back and forths in politics depending on who wins elections and voters being forced to pick the lesser of two evils.
While some may argue that Proportional-representation parliaments can be too diverse and indecisive, I believe that this can be curbed and should be welcomed to some extent. PR can lead to a consensus of opinion and the representation of several different political philosophies.
Assume that I can press a button to instantaneously implement proportional representation. This system can be any form of PR. You don't need to cover both Canada and the US in your response, one is fine.
EDIT: I made it sound like the Conservatives won far less seats than they were entitled to in the latest Canadian election. That's untrue, their result was almost proportional. It was in fact the Liberals who won about a far greater proportion of the seats compared to their proportion of the popular vote. Edited to reflect that.
Georgia just passed a new election reform law which, some would argue, violates equal voting rights that are Constitutionally guaranteed.
So, let’s say some party wants to mount a challenge to the law’s Constitutionality. Does this require that a party or person shows injury because of the law (ie they were not allowed to vote, etc) or can a challenge be mounted now to prevent potential future injury?
I also assume that this would have to be ruled on by the GA Supreme Court, then District Court, and then only then could SCOTUS step in. Am I correct here?
Due to Covid, according to CNN, there will be a new wrinkle in the Electoral College meetings tomorrow: "Three states -- Colorado, Nevada and Utah are holding virtual meetings by video conference." If this is true, then what are the chances Team Trump will contest at least the Colorado and Nevada virtual meetings and their 15 electoral votes?
The 12th Amendment requires: "The Electors shall meet in their respective states and vote by ballot for President and Vice-President..." I assume all the virtual meeting electors will be within their respective states, but can the virtual meetings and virtual ballots be challenged? The amendment was passed in 1803, so would originalist justices have a problem with this?
3 U.S. Code § 9 requires: "The electors shall make and sign six certificates of all the votes given by them..." Will the courts accept digital signatures or other forms of verification? That statute was approved in 1948, so more originalist issues?
Nevada's state laws are vague on the meeting place, but Colorado's designate it to be in the governor's office and Utah's designate the lieutenant governor's office. I assume a court or executive officer has authorized the virtual meetings, but 3 U.S. Code § 7 says these electors shall meet "at such place in each State as the legislature of such State shall direct."
So, similar to the U.S. Constitution's Article II, Section 1, Clause 2's assigning powers to states' legislatures, does 3 U.S. Code § 7 give SCOTUS the opportunity to revisit the Independent Legislature Doctrine? Must the meeting places be designated only by the legislatures? Or can the legislatures delegate this power to executive and/or judicial branch officials? Did the legislatures make such delegations? I assume there would be a laches issue, at least if the lawsuit is filed after 14 Dec. How much influence will stare decisis have if a ruling on the merits occurs?
 A recent Denver Post [article](https://www.den... keep reading on reddit ➡