The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

In one of the most anticipated cases of the week, the Supreme Court struck down 3 of the 4 provisions of the aggressive 2010 Arizona immigration law that many have criticized as de facto endorsement of racial profiling. In a 5-3 decision (Judge Elena Kagan recused herself due to her previous involvement with the case as solicitor general), the court ruled that Arizona cannot make it a crime for illegal immigrants to work or look for work. The state was also barred from criminalizing immigrants to not be carrying legal identification, nor are Arizona police are not allowed to arrest someone solely based on the suspicion that they are in the country illegally. The court did, however, affirm the provision that required police to check the immigration status of people they’ve detained if there’s “reasonable suspicion” that they are not a legal resident of the country. This decision could affect states that have similar state-level immigration laws such as Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, South Carolina, and Utah.

Taken in full, the ruling was win for President Obama and his administration’s efforts to block the Arizona law from taking effect by arguing that it impeded the federal government’s power to enforce the nation’s immigration laws. This decision effectively gives the federal government sole power to enforce illegal immigration laws. In his written opinion, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy acknowledges that “Arizona may have understandable frustrations with the problems caused by illegal immigration, but the state may not pursue policies that undermine federal law.”

The SCOTUS decision follows Obama’s recent announcement of his executive order to stop the deportation of illegal immigrants under 30 that meet requirements. It once again highlights immigration as an important topic for this upcoming presidential election–something Mitt Romney may not be entirely happy about as he simultaneously tries to court Hispanic voters and rally up his anti-immigration base.

But the Obama Administration — along with campaign finance reformers who were hoping the SCOTUS would reconsider the the controversial 2010 Citizens United decision — found themselves disappointed today. The ruling that allowed corporations and unions to spend an unrestricted amount on political expenditures, which has led to an unprecedented flood of campaign spending, was directly challenged by the Montana state supreme court when refused to strike down the ban that restricted corporations from contributions to political campaigns, citing their state’s history of corruption. The Supreme Court rejected this argument with 5-4 vote along partisan lines. The conservative judges argued that “there can be no serious doubt” that the Citizens United  case applied to Montana’s state campaign finance laws.

In another 5-4 ruling, the Supreme Court ruled that sending juveniles to jail for life without a chance for parole was unconstitutional. This decision stems from the cases of Evan Miller and Kuntrell Jackson, who were both 14 when they were convicted of robbery and murder.

The last Supreme Court decision day will be this Thursday, when the highly anticipated healthcare decision will finally be announced.



Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Rep. Ted Budd, left, and Cheri Beasley

On Tuesday, North Carolina Republicans selected Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC), a far-right extremist who has pushed false claims about the 2020 election, to be their Senate nominee. He will face Democratic nominee Cheri Beasley, a former chief justice of the state's Supreme Court.

As of Wednesday morning, Budd had received more than 58 percent of the GOP primary vote. Former Gov. Pat McCrory received just below 25 percent of the vote, while former Rep. Mark Walker received about nine percent of the vote.

Keep reading... Show less

Stephen Colbert

It seems we can't go even a week in America without some deranged white nationalist shooter taking the lives of decent people. Of course, this type of violence is propagated on a daily basis by the far-right sh*tweasals at Fox News and, worse yet, in the ranks of the Republican Party.

After returning to the Late Show helm, Stephen Colbert weighed in on the real culprit behind the mass shootings -- the Replacement Theory popularized by Tucker Carlson.

Keep reading... Show less
{{ }}