ARRA News Service
ARRA News Service facebook page  
News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used.
Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
Contact: editor@arranewsservice.com (Pub. Since July, 2006)
    Home Page

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Supreme Court Got It Wrong: Non-citizens Shouldn’t Be Counted

State legislatures should consider changing
their rules & laws governing redistricting
to make citizen population the standard
for drawing legislative districts,
not total population.
by Hans von Spakovskyz & Elizabeth Slattery : In a loss for voters, the Supreme Court has ruled unanimously against two residents of Texas who had argued that the Texas legislature diluted their votes when it used total population to redraw state Senate districts.

In Evenwel v. Abbott, the Supreme Court allowed states to use total population in redrawing district lines, even though that this includes a large number of noncitizens (legal and illegal), felons, and others who are ineligible to vote.

Sue Evenwel and Edward Pfenninger challenged the state Senate districts drawn by the Texas legislature using total population in 2013. They claimed that both the number of citizens of voting age and the number of registered voters in their districts deviated substantially—between 31 and 49 percent—from the “ideal” population of a Texas Senate district. They argued that this disparity significantly diluted their votes in comparison to those of voters who live in districts with large numbers of non-voters.

According to this logic, their votes were worth roughly half those of voters in other districts. In other words, they claimed that their Senate districts had the same number of representatives as other districts that contained the same number of people but only half the number of eligible voters.

This is a particular problem in Texas, which has almost two million illegal aliens, about seven percent of the state’s population.

‘One Person, One Vote’
By way of background, state legislatures reapportion voting districts for their state and federal representatives following each decennial Census. The guiding principle for states—“one person, one vote”—requires that all voters have approximately equal voting power.

This principle comes from a line of cases decided by the Supreme Court in the mid-1960s. Prior to that time, the court had refused to intervene in redistricting controversies, claiming that it was a “political question” the courts should not consider.

According to the court, the “one person, one vote” principle that it read into the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause requires that “seats in both houses of a bicameral state legislature must be apportioned on a population basis.”

The court never defined what population basis states could use. When the court previously declined to hear a 2001 case similar to Evenwel v. Abbott, Justice Clarence Thomas observed that the court “left a critical variable … undefined … the relevant ‘population’ that States and localities must equally distribute among their districts.”

Urban Lawmakers Dominate
Before the Supreme Court’s creation of the “one person, one vote” principle, many states had refused to redistrict for more than half a century, despite a dramatic nationwide population shift from rural to urban areas.

These state legislatures were dominated by rural legislators, who were not willing to reapportion and lose their power and control. The “one person, one vote” principle led to legislative districts being redrawn in nearly every state and urban areas gaining a large number of legislative seats.

Today, lawmakers from urban areas dominate many state legislatures the way rural areas used to because of the huge influx of noncitizens, both legal and illegal, into predominantly urban settings. The court’s decision in Evenwel is a refusal to correct this problem, in sharp contrast to what it did 60 years ago when the situation was reversed.

Claims of vote dilution have been the driving force of redistricting cases for decades, and the court has affirmed dozens of judgments against states and local governments for diluting the votes of its minority residents. Yet in Evenwel v. Abbott, the court failed to enforce its “one person, one vote” principle evenhandedly. With this ruling, the Supreme Court has sanctioned states’ dilution of citizens’ votes.

Total Population
The court has concluded that states may base their legislative districts on total population. In an opinion for six members of the court, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg found that history, the court’s precedents, and the settled practice of states using total population make clear that “it is plainly permissible for jurisdictions to measure equalization by the total population of state and local legislative districts.”

The majority also pointed out:
[N]onvoters have an important stake in many policy debates … and in receiving constituent services, such as help navigating public-benefits bureaucracies. By ensuring that each representative is subject to requests and suggestions from the same number of constituents, total-population apportionment promotes equitable and effective representation.The problem with that analysis is that noncitizens, particularly illegal aliens, are not entitled to any representation, constituent services, or public benefits. Their presence distorts the redistricting and apportionment process and shifts political power in a way that is fundamentally unfair to citizens, both those eligible to vote and those, like children, who are not eligible.

There is also no credible basis for the claim that representatives would choose to vary the amount of help they give to constituents depending on how large the population is in their districts.

Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito agreed with the majority’s conclusion but not its reasoning. Writing separately, Thomas noted that the court has never provided a sound basis for the “one person, one vote” principle and has struggled to define what that principle protects. Thomas concluded that Evenwel and Pfenninger are right that the court’s “one person, one vote” precedents are based on “the theory that eligible voters have a right against vote dilution.” In his view, the majority’s reasoning “rests on a flawed reading of history and wrongly picks one side of a debate that the Framers did not resolve in the Constitution.”

Alito pointed out one of the only redeeming features of this decision. Texas asked the court to also rule on whether states “are not barred from using eligible voter statistics” to draw boundary lines instead of total population.

This question “implicates very difficult theoretical and empirical questions about the nature of representation.” Alito stated the court has “no need to wade into these waters in this case” and can consider it “if and when” the court gets a redistricting plan that “uses something other than total population as the basis for equalizing the size of districts.”

State legislatures should consider changing their rules and laws governing redistricting to make citizen population the standard for drawing legislative districts, not total population. That is the best way to protect the value of citizens’ right to vote.
-------------
Hans von Spakovsky (@HvonSpakovsky) is an authority on a wide range of issues—including civil rights, civil justice, the First Amendment, immigration, the rule of law and government reform—as a senior legal fellow in The Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies and manager of the think tank’s Election Law Reform Initiative. More ARRA News Service articles by or about Hans con Spakovsky

Elizabeth Slattery (@EHSlattery) writes about the rule of law, the proper role of the courts, civil rights and equal protection, and the scope of constitutional provisions such as the Commerce Clause and the Recess Appointments Clause as a legal fellow in the Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.

Tags: Supreme Court, Got It Wrong, Non-citizens, Shouldn’t Be Counted, by states, Heritage Foundation, Hans von Spakovsky, The Daily Signal, Elizabeth Slattery To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 3:43 PM - Post Link

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

<< Home



national debt
Don't miss anything!
Subscribe to the
ARRA News Service
It's FREE & No Ads!

You Receive One Email Each Morning
With Prior Days Articles / Toons / More


Also, Join us at:
Facebook.com/ARRANewsService


Recent Posts:
Personal Tweets by the editor:
Dr. Bill - OzarkGuru
Married 48yr #Conservative #Constitution #NRALife #GunRights #USAF 22yr #military #veteran #Christian #CCOT #ProLife #TEAParty #GOP #TCOT #SGP #schoolchoice



Action Links!
Arkansas State Senators
AR State Representatives
Arkansas Governor Office
Arkansas Attorney General
Bankrupting America
US House of Representatives
US Senators
Family Research Council
GrassFire
NumbersUSA
Ballotpedia
Judgepedia
Sunshine Review


Facebook Accts - Dr. Bill Smith
Pages:
ARRA News Service
Arkansans Against Big Government
Alley-White Am. Legion #52
Baxter County Republicans, AR
Catholics & Protestants United Against Discrimination
End Taxpayer Funding of NPR
Overturn Roe V. Wade
Prolife Soldiers
Project Wildfire
Republican Liberty Caucus of Arkansas
The Gold Standard
Twin Lakes Republican Women
US Atty Gen Loretta Lynch, aka Eric Holder, Must Go
Veterans for Sarah Palin
Why Vote for Hillary (Satire)
FB Groups:
Arkansas For Sarah Palin
Arkansas Conservative Caucus
Arkansas County Tea Party
Arkansans' Discussion Group on National Issues
Blogs for Borders
Conservative Solutions
Conservative Voices
Defend Marriage -- Arkansas
FairTax
FairTax Nation
Arkansas for FairTax
Friends of the TEA Party in Arkansas
Freedom Roundtable
Let's Mine AR Lignite NOW!
Personhood Initiative
Pro-Life Rocks - Arkansas
Republican Network
Republican Liberty Caucus of AR
Reject the U.N.

Patriots
Exchange
Links

Links to ARRA News
A Patriotic Nurse
Agora Associates
a12iggymom's Blog
America, You Asked For It!
Americans for a Free Republic
America's Best Choice
America's Whatchtower
An Ol’ Broad’s Ramblings
AR Republican Assembly
ARRA Twitter
As A Matter of Fact
As The Crackerhead Crumbles
Baaad Media!
Baxter Co. GOP Assembly
Baxter County Republicans
Benton Co. GOP Assembly
Black & Right
Blogs For Borders
Blogs for Palin
Blow the Trumpet Ministry
Boot Berryism
Cap'n Bob & the Damsel
Chicago Ray Report
Chuck Baldwin - links
Citizen Pamphleteer
Common Cents
Conservative Hideout
Conservative Observer AZ
Conservative Voices
Conway Real Deal
Defeat Obama's Agenda
Diana's Corner
eGOP News
Florida Pundit
Franklin Online Outreach
Freedom For US Now
Free Zone Media Center
For God and Liberty
Garland County Republicans
Greater Fitchburg For Life
Guns and Religion
Lasting Liberty Blog
Liberal Isn't Amy
Liberty's Lifeline
Maggie's Notebook
Marathon Pundit
Monkey in the Middle
NASA Satellites
No Runny Eggs
Okie Campaigns
Our Voices Arkansas
Patriot's Corner
ProLifeBlogs
Publius Forum
Randy's Roundtable
Real Debate Wisconsin
Religion and Morality
Right on Issues that Matter
Right Reason
Rocking on the Right Side
Saber Point
Saline Watchdog
Secure Arkansas
Sentry Journal
Teresamerica
Stop Obama Satire & Cartoons
The Arkansas Patriot
The Audacity of Logic
The Blue Eye View
The Bobo Files
The Born Again Americans
TEA Party Cartoons
The Conservative Citizen
The Foxhole | Unapologetic Patriot
The Liberty Republican
The Lid
The Looking Spoon
The Maritime Sentry
The O Word
The Path to Tyranny Blog
The Real Polichick
TOTUS
Truth About Obamacare
Twitter @ARRA
Warning Signs
Women's Prayer & Action
WyBlog

Editor's Managed Twitter Accounts
Twitter Dr. Bill Smith @arra
Twitter Arkansas @GOPNetwork
Twitter @BootBerryism
Twitter @SovereignAllies
Twitter @FairTaxNation


Editor's Recommended Orgs
Accuracy in Media (AIM)
American Committment
American Enterprise Institute
American Family Business Institute
Americans for Limited Government
Americans for Prosperity
Americans for Tax Reform
American Security Council Fdn
AR Faith & Ethics Council
Arkansas Policy Foundation
Ayn Rand Institute
Bill of Rights Institute
Campaign for Working Families
Center for Individual Freedom
Center for Immigration Studies
Center for Just Society
Center for Freedom & Prosperity
Citizens Against Gov't Waste
Citizens in Charge Foundstion
Coalition for the Future American Worker
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Concerned Veterans for America
Concerned Women for America
Curtis Coleman Institute for Constitutional Policy
Declaration of Am. Renewal
Eagle Forum
FairTax
Family Research Council
Family Security Matters
Franklin Center for Gov't & Public Integrity
Gingrich Productions
Global Incident Map
Great Americans
Gold Standard 2012 Project
Gun Owners of America (GOA)
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Institute For Justice
Institute for Truth in Accounting
Judicial Watch
Less Government
Media Reseach Center
National Center for Policy Analysis
National Right To Work Foundation
National Rifle Association (NRA)
National Rifle Association (NRA-ILA)
News Busters
O'Bluejacket's Patriotic Flicks
Open Secrets
Presidential Prayer Team
Religious Freedom Coalition
Renew America
Ron Paul Institute
State Policy Network
Tax Foundation
Tax Policy Center
The Club for Growth
The Federalist
The Gold Standard Now
The Heritage Foundation
The Leadership Institute
Union Facts



Blogs For Borders

Reject the United Nations

Adopt Our Troops in Prayer


Thousands of Deadly Islamic Terror Attacks Since 9/11

FairTax Nation on FaceBook
Friends of Israel
Blog Feeds
Syndicated - Get the ARRA News Service feed Syndicated!
ARRA Blog Feed

Add to Google Reader or Homepage

Add to netvibes

Add to Bitty Brouser

Add to The Free Dictionary

Powered by Blogger

Politics Blogs
Politics blog


  • How To Exchange Links!
  • Comments by contributing authors or other sources do not necessarily reflect the position the editor, other contributing authors, sources, readers, or commenters. No contributors, or editors are paid for articles, images, cartoons, etc. While having reported on and promoting the beliefs associated with the ARRA, this blog/site is not controlled by nor funded by the ARRA. This site/blog does not advertise for money or services nor does it solicit funding for its support.
  • Fair Use: This site/blog may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material as provided for in section Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Per said section, the material on this site/blog is distributed without profit to readers to view for the expressed purpose of viewing the included information for research, educational, or satirical purposes. Any person/entity seeking to use copyrighted material shared on this site/blog for purposes that go beyond "fair use," must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
  • © 2006 - 2016 ARRA News Service
Creative Commons License
Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.