All Bets Are Off on Mobile Sports Wagering Being Legal in Florida on October 15

Under the Florida-Seminole Tribe gaming compact signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis and approved by lawmakers in May, mobile online sports wagering becomes officially legal in the Sunshine State on Oct. 15.

But after two Florida pari-mutuels filed a motion in federal court late Tuesday to block the sports wagering component of the 30-year gaming deal from being implemented, don’t bet on it.

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Web Designer Forced to Publish Messages Countering Her Religious Faith Asks Supreme Court to Hear Case

Person coding a website

A Colorado web designer asked the Supreme Court to take up her case challenging a state law forcing her to publish websites with messages counter to her religious beliefs.

Lorie Smith filed the petition with the Supreme Court on Friday, arguing a lower court ruling that upheld the Colorado law was wrongly decided, Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the firm representing her, announced. The law compelled Smith’s speech in violation of her First Amendment rights by forcing her business 303 Creative to produce content against her beliefs, she said.

“The government shouldn’t weaponize the law to force a web designer to speak messages that violate her belief,” ADF General Counsel Kristen Waggoner said during a press call before filing the petition. “This case involves quintessential free speech and artistic freedom, which the 10th circuit astonishingly and dangerously cast aside here.”

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Commentary: Biden’s Vaccine Mandate Could Rise or Fall Based on 2012 Roberts Ruling on Obamacare Individual Mandate

“Construing the Commerce Clause to permit Congress to regulate individuals precisely because they are doing nothing would open a new and potentially vast domain to congressional authority.”

That was Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts’ majority opinion ruling in 2012 that the individual mandate to purchase health insurance in the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, was unconstitutional under Congress’ Article I, Section 8 power to regulate interstate commerce.

And yet, the mandate was rescued in the very same decision by Roberts, ruling that penalty under the individual mandate was a valid exercise of Congress’ Article I, Section 8 power to collect taxes.

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Justice Breyer to Those Pushing Court Packing: ‘What Goes Around Comes Around’

Justice Stephen Breyer

Justice Stephen Breyer issued a stark warning to those pushing to pack the Supreme Court: “what goes around comes around.”

Breyer made the remark during an interview with NPR published Friday, ahead of the release of his new book, “The Authority of the Court and the Peril of Politics.” He has pushed back on calls to add seats to the court — and on progressives urging him to retire — on multiple recent occasions.

“What goes around comes around,” he said. “And if the Democrats can do it, then the Republicans can do it.”

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Biden Says He Respects Those Who Believe Life Begins at Conception, But Doesn’t Agree

President Joe Biden said Friday that though he respects Americans who believe life begins at conception, he does not agree with them.

The president discussed Texas’ Heartbeat Act, which the Supreme Court declined to block earlier this week, Friday morning with reporters. The law bans abortion after six weeks and allows “any person” to sue doctors, abortion clinics, or anyone who “knowingly engages in conduct that aids or abets the performance or inducement of an abortion.”

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Commentary: The Supreme Court’s Ruling on Texas’ Abortion Law Is Another Sign That It May Overturn Roe

Couple kissing, holding up ultrasound in front of them

Just before midnight on Wednesday, the Supreme Court issued an order denying injunctive relief to the Texas abortion providers who had sought to halt Texas’ new abortion law which prohibits abortions after an unborn baby’s heartbeat can be detected. 

The majority opinion said the Court would not intervene because the plaintiffs had failed to demonstrate whether the defendants, including state judges, can or will seek to enforce the law against them. The five conservative justices in the majority, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch, and Amy Coney Barrett, noted that federal courts have the power to enjoin people tasked with enforcing laws, and not laws themselves. 

The Texas law gives citizens the power to sue abortion providers or anyone who “aids and abets” an abortion after six weeks gestation. This structure provided the legal technicality which allowed the near-ban on abortion to remain in effect. 

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Abortion Law Is as Bad as Literal Terrorists, According to Liberal Activists

Liberal activists and progressive media compared Texas’ new pro-life law to the Taliban after it went into effect Wednesday.

“I am calling on Joe Biden and the UN to lead a humanitarian effort to airlift women out of Texas,” tweeted BotSentinel founder Christopher Bouzy. “The North American Taliban has seized control of Texas.”

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Conservative Student Group Threatened with Blacklisting for Refusing to Sign ‘Black Lives Matter’ Letter

A group of students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign signed a letter of demands to the Federalist Society chapter at the university after the chapter stated it would remain neutral on the Black Lives Matter movement.

“I am incredibly proud to be part of an institution among leaders who, when faced with the recent cries from the black community who has for their entire existence in this country been oppressed, amplified these cries loud enough so that those in power will finally hear,” began the letter authored by University of Illinois College of Law student Celestina Radogno, a copy of which Campus Reform has obtained.

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Commentary: Envy as the Path to Political Power

Bernie Sanders

Demagogues appeal to envy because they believe that promising to destroy the advantages enjoyed by others will win votes and inspire loyalty. Sometimes it does. As the envy-driven horrors of Rwanda and Nazi Germany demonstrate, pledging to disrupt the envied lives of a despised “other” can be a ticket to victory for a political candidate savvy enough to convince voters that he has their best interests at heart.

More than 25 years ago, Doug Bandow, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, pronounced in his book The Politics of Envy: Statism as Theology that we “live in an age of envy.” Pointing out that “people don’t so much want more money for themselves as they want to take it away from those with more,” Bandow suggested that although “greed is bad enough, eating away at a person’s soul, envy is far worse because it destroys not only individuals, but also communities, poisoning relations.” A Christian libertarian, Bandow wrote that 

those who are greedy may ruin their own lives, but those who are envious contaminate the larger community by letting their covetousness interfere with their relations with others. 

One can satisfy greed in innocuous, even positive ways—by being brighter, working harder, seeing new opportunities, or meeting the demands of others, for instance.

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Supreme Court Strikes Down Biden’s New Eviction Moratorium

Supreme Court with a cherry blossom in the foreground

The Supreme Court ordered the Biden administration on Thursday to stop enforcing the federal eviction moratorium recently extended to October.

In a 6-3 decision along ideological lines, the high court ruled that the moratorium, which has prohibited landlords from evicting low-income tenants since its implementation in March 2020, would need congressional authorization to be continued. The decision potentially exposes about 12 million Americans, who reported having little to no confidence in being able to make their next rental payment, to imminent eviction.

“It would be one thing if Congress had specifically authorized the action that the CDC has taken,” the Supreme Court ruling said. “But that has not happened. Instead, the CDC has imposed a nationwide moratorium on evictions in reliance on a decades-old statute that authorizes it to implement measures like fumigation and pest extermination.”

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Lawyer Suing Indiana University for COVID Vaccine Mandate Expanding Effort to ‘Four or Five States’

The lawyer representing students challenging Indiana University’s COVID vaccine mandate has been “retained by students in other states to bring similar claims,” he said in an interview Tuesday.

Veteran litigator James Bopp told the John Solomon Reports podcast that he expects to file suit in another “four or five states in the next couple of weeks.”

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Texas Supreme Court Rules That Democrats in Legislature Can Be Arrested to Compel Attendance

Texas Justice Jimmy Blacklock

The Texas Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the Texas Constitution authorizes the state’s House of Representatives to arrest members who flee in order to break the quorum required to vote.

The opinion states that “just as” Texas’ Constitution enables “‘quorum-breaking’ by a minority faction of the legislature, it likewise authorizes ‘quorum-forcing’ by the remaining members,” including by “arrest.”

“The legal question before this Court concerns only whether the Texas Constitution gives the House of Representatives the authority to physically compel the attendance of absent members. We conclude that it does, and we therefore direct the district court to withdraw the TRO,” wrote Justice Jimmy Blacklock on behalf of the state’s Supreme Court.

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Supreme Court Denies Request for Injunction in IU Vaccine Mandate Case

Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett on Thursday denied the request for an emergency injunction to stop Indiana University’s vaccination mandate from going into effect.

Her decision, however, does not mark the end of the road for the eight IU students suing the university, or for their attorney, Jim Bopp.

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Commentary: Mandatory Vaccinations Undermine Roe v. Wade and Choice

COVID Vaccine

Well, isn’t this interesting.

Recall Roe v. Wade? The famous abortion decision from the U.S. Supreme Court that was issued in January of 1973? It said this:

This right of privacy, whether it be founded in the Fourteenth Amendment‘s concept of personal liberty and restrictions upon state action, as we feel it is, or … in the Ninth Amendment‘s reservation of rights to the people, is broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy.” — Roe, 410 U.S. at 153

In the vernacular, this quickly was reduced to a pro-Roe movement that self-identified as “pro-choice.” Or, as the saying goes, “abortion rights”  boosters supported the idea of “my body, my choice.”

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Pelosi, House Democrats Ask Biden to Extend Eviction Moratorium in Violation of Supreme Court Ruling

Nancy Pelosi

House Democratic leaders issued a joint statement calling on the White House to disregard a recent Supreme Court ruling and extend the national eviction moratorium.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the other top House Democratic leaders urged President Joe Biden’s administration to extend the eviction moratorium until Oct. 18, 2021 and said doing so is a “moral imperative,” according to the joint statement released Sunday. The moratorium — first introduced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last year to prevent landlords from evicting low-income tenants during the pandemic — expired over the weekend after Congress failed to pass legislation extending it.

“Action is needed, and it must come from the Administration,” the House Democrats said. “That is why House leadership is calling on the Administration to immediately extend the moratorium.”

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Report: 1.9 Million Households Owe $15 Billion in Back Rent as Eviction Moratorium Expires

Aerial view of a suburb

Up to 1.95 million households across America will owe a collective $15 billion in back rent when the eviction moratorium expires Saturday, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia estimates.

That number will reach 2 million by December, according to the report released Friday. In Pennsylvania, about 60,000 renter households will owe $412 million come August. 

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) made one final 30-day extension of the Emergency Rental Assistance Program through July 31. President Joe Biden’s administration said its “hands are tied” by the courts on the matter and any further relief must come from Congress itself. 

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Hawley, Cruz, Lee Call for Supreme Court to Overturn Roe v. Wade

Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz and Mike Lee

Leading Republican senators filed an amicus brief Monday urging the Supreme Court to overrule its decisions in two major abortion cases.

Republican Sens. Josh Hawley of Missouri, Mike Lee of Utah, and Ted Cruz of Texas filed the brief in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which the court is scheduled to hear beginning in October, calling on the court to revisit its rulings in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey.

The senators pushed the Court to return questions of abortion legislation to the states and challenged the Supreme Court’s abortion jurisprudence as unconstitutional.

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Commentary: Supreme Court Raised the Bar for Challenge to Georgia Election Law

The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee has prompted extensive commentary about the implications for future challenges to election laws under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. Litigants arguing that some laws, such as Georgia’s newly enacted SB 202, disproportionately affect racial minorities may have a greater challenge meeting the standard set forth by the court than the standard that some lower courts had been using in recent years.

But while the justices split on a 6-3 vote on whether a pair of Arizona statutes ran afoul of the Act, it voted 6-0 (with three justices not addressing the question) in concluding that Arizona did not act with discriminatory intent. This holding sets the stage for the Justice Department’s recent lawsuit against Georgia, and it offers hints at how district courts and reviewing courts should behave. In short, the Justice Department has an uphill battle.

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Mississippi Attorney General Urges Supreme Court to Overturn Roe v. Wade

Mississippi’s Attorney General Lynn Fitch called on the Supreme Court Thursday to defend the right of states to pass laws protecting “life and women’s health,” urging the court to overturn the landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade.

The attorney general filed a brief in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which the court will hear beginning in October, slamming Roe as “egregiously wrong” and calling on the Supreme Court to uphold Mississippi’s ban on abortions after 15 weeks.

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Pennsylvania State Sen. Doug Mastriano Initiates Forensic Investigation of 2020 Election

Doug Mastriano

The Pennsylvania state senator who led a hearing on election fraud in Gettysburg, PA, last November, has initiated a “full forensic investigation” into 2020 election results in several counties.

Republican State Sen. Doug Mastriano said in a statement that as chair of the Senate Intergovernmental Operations Committee, that he has issued letters to several counties representing “different geographical regions of Pennsylvania and differing political makeups,” requesting “information and materials needed to conduct a forensic investigation of the 2020 General Election and the 2021 Primary.”

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Supreme Court Rules Against California Requirement That Exposes Non-Profit Donations

In a 6-3 vote, the Supreme Court struck down a California requirement, pushed by Vice President Kamala Harris while she was Attorney General, that would force the disclosure of donations to various non-profits.

In an opinion siding with the Thomas More Law Center (TMLC) and Americans For Prosperity (AFP), who both sued the state, Chief Justice John Roberts stated, “The government may regulate in the First Amendment area only with narrow specificity, and compelled disclosure regimes are no exception.”

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Supreme Courts Upholds Arizona Voting Laws Aimed at Increasing Election Security

In a 6-3 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld on Thursday two Arizona rules that were implemented in an attempt to increase overall election security.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich celebrated the decision handed down by the court. “I am thankful the justices upheld states’ ability to pass and maintain commonsense election laws, at a time when our country needs it most.”

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Supreme Court Rules That Previously-Deported Illegal Aliens Have No Right to a Bond Hearing

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court ruled that illegal aliens who have been detained in the country after having already been deported do not have the guaranteed right to a court hearing to determine their fate, the New York Post reports.

The 6-3 ruling came down along strictly ideological lines, with the court’s three left-wing justices – Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan – dissenting. The decision determined that even detainees who claimed that they feared persecution or violence in their home countries are not automatically allowed a court hearing, which would normally determine whether or not they are allowed to be released from jail while their legal proceedings are underway.

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Supreme Court Hands Union Loss in California Trespass Case

The Supreme Court has ruled that a California regulation allowing union organizers to trespass on private property to recruit agricultural workers violated private property rights.

In Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid released Wednesday, California agriculture businesses Cedar Point Nursery and Fowler Packing Company challenged a state law allowing labor unions a “right to take access” to an agricultural employer’s private property three hours per day, 120 days per year to recruit new union members. The court held that this constitutes a “per se” taking. They reversed and remanded prior rulings on California’s access regulation with a 6-3 vote, the dissenting votes belonging to the court’s three left-leaning justices. 

In 2015, union organizers entered Cedar Point Nursery at 5 a.m., disrupting work during harvest season with bullhorns to convince the farm employees to join the United Farm Workers (UFW) union. Mike Fahner, the owner of the strawberry farm, did not grant the union workers permission to enter his property, nor was he given notice of their arrival. He was not legally allowed to ask the union organizers to leave his property. 

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules Against NCAA on Payment for College Athletes

Paying college athletes has been a hotly debated topic for years, but now the U.S. Supreme Court has released a ruling on the issue.

A group of current and former student athletes brought the lawsuit against the National Collegiate Athletic Association, arguing that the organization violated antitrust laws when it prevented student athletes from accepting certain education-related benefits.

The case, filed in 2018, challenged the NCAA and the biggest conferences including the Pac-12, Big Ten, Big 12, SEC, and ACC. The Supreme Court ruled unanimously in favor of the students Monday, saying the NCAA could not deny those benefits, which could include things like “scholarships for graduate or vocational school, payments for academic tutoring, or paid posteligibility internships.”

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Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Nestle, Cargill in Human Rights Lawsuit

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Nestle USA and Cargill could not be sued for alleged human rights abuses that occurred overseas.

The plaintiffs, six Mali citizens enslaved as children on Ivory Coast cocoa farms supplying the food giants, sued Nestle and Cargill for damages, alleging the companies had aided and profited from child labor. The court ruled the corporations could not be sued for the overseas abuses.

“Nearly all the conduct they allege aided and abetted forced labor—providing training, equipment, and cash to overseas farmers—occurred in the Ivory Coast,” Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in the majority opinion.

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Judge Rules Christian Baker Jack Phillips Must Make ‘Gender Transition’ Cake

Jack Phillips

A Colorado baker and self-described cake artist who won a 2018 victory at the Supreme Court faced a related setback this week when a state court ruled in another case that the law requires him to make a cake to celebrate a gender transition. 

Denver District Court Judge A. Bruce Jones ruled against Jack Phillips, the Christian owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, in the case of Scardina v. Masterpiece Cakeshop. 

“The anti-discrimination laws are intended to ensure that members of our society who have historically been treated unfairly, who have been deprived of even the every-day right to access businesses to buy products, are no longer treated as ‘others,’” Jones wrote Tuesday in a 28-page opinion.

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Supreme Court Unanimously Sides with Catholic Adoption Agency in Religious Freedom Case

The United States Supreme Court has unanimously sided with a Catholic adoption agency in a religious freedom case regarding same sex unions.

The court ruled 9-0 that the city of Philadelphia’s refusal to contract with Catholic Social Services (CSS) unless CSS agreed to ‘certify same-sex couples as foster parents” violates CSS’s free exercise of the First Amendment.

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Commentary: The Real Threats to Our Democracy

United States Capitol at night

In the Wall Street Journal of June 10, Peggy Noonan captured the kernel of the crisis of national division that afflicts America: Donald Trump and opposed perceptions of last year’s presidential election. Equitable person though Noonan is, she qualifies as a Trump-hater, whose invective against Trump has only escalated over time.

Noonan’s premise today is that any question about the 2016 presidential election is unfounded conspiracism, but that suspicion is growing, spread by “the Trump underworld—the operatives, grifters, and media figures around him  . . .  This lessens our faith in our systems   . . . it leaves the GOP with an untreated cancer.” She holds that “QAnon is important” in propagating this fraud. She thinks that anyone who wasn’t appalled by the storming of the Capitol on January 6 has given up on democracy. Lingering concern about the fairness of the result is in itself an assault upon democracy. “The breaching of the Capitol happened because of a conspiracy theory: that the election was actually won by Mr. Trump but stolen from him by bad people.”

She makes no allowance for exactly the opposite view: that there is ample evidence that Trump was sandbagged in rigged voting and vote-counting in only six states, stonewalled by the courts, and defamed by a unanimous national political media: the courts couldn’t face overturning the election, and the media can’t accept the idea that it was a tainted election. I agree with her that “the only thing that can stop” (the cancer that supposedly afflicts the GOP, even if it is in fact benign righteousness) “is true facts independently developed and presented with respect and receipts.” 

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Supreme Court Denies Green Cards for Migrants Granted Temporary Protected Status

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected an effort to allow migrants who have claimed temporary humanitarian relief from deportation to obtain permanent residency.

In an increasingly rare, unanimous decision, the court states that the country’s immigration laws prevent migrants who entered the country illegally and now have Temporary Protected Status (TPS) from seeking “green cards” to stay in the U.S. permanently

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Commentary: No One Supreme Court Case Can Relieve Us of Our Duty to the Unborn

Infants feet in woman's hand

The Supreme Court’s decision to take up Mississippi’s petition to reinstate their landmark ban on late-term abortions has brought forth an outpouring of both giddiness and trepidation from the pro-life community. Pro-life Americans are by turns hailing the opportunity for the greatest legal victory for the unborn in decades and declaring the case, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a litmus test on the usefulness of the entire conservative legal movement.

I don’t want to downplay Dobb’s importance. Mississippi’s law, protecting the lives of unborn children after 15 weeks, is both one of the bravest acts on behalf of mothers and children by any American legislature and striking in its common sense and humanity. That every one of America’s 50 states is, by judicial fiat, one of the very few places on earth that allow children to be aborted on-demand this late into pregnancy, is a disgrace whose correction is long overdue.

Furthermore, the Supreme Court merely agreeing to hear Mississippi’s appeal after lower courts struck the law down, represents a victory unto itself. To get to this point, at least four justices had to have agreed that this area of the law is in need of clarification and perhaps correction. Amicus briefs from many of the country’s leading pro-life lawyers will introduce arguments at the highest level of American jurisprudence that may seed future legislation and lawsuits even if Mississippi’s law is not allowed to go into effect.

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Realtor Groups Bring Eviction Moratorium Case to Supreme Court, Argue Against CDC’s ‘Staggering’ Power

Supreme Court building

A group of realtor organizations asked the Supreme Court to block the federal eviction moratorium that has been in effect throughout the pandemic and prevents landlords from evicting tenants who skip rent payments.

The group, led by the Alabama Association of Realtors, asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to issue an emergency order blocking the moratorium, which had been crafted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), according to court filings. The moratorium has resulted in more than $13 billion in unpaid rent per month since it was introduced, the coalition wrote to the high court.

“Congress never gave the CDC the staggering amount of power it now claims,” the groups’ filing said.

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Texas Bill Banning Abortion If Roe Is Overturned Heads to Governor’s Desk

Baby sleeping

The Texas state Senate has sent a bill banning abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned to the pro-life governor’s desk for signing.

The Human Life Protection Act of 2021 is a trigger bill that would ban abortion if the United States Supreme Court overturns the landmark decision Roe v. Wade. The court announced in mid May that it had agreed to take up a major Mississippi abortion case that could directly challenge Roe v. Wade, sparking hope in pro-life advocates and fear among abortion proponents.

Under the Texas trigger bill, which the Senate voted to send to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk Tuesday night, doctors or individuals attempting to perform abortions would face a second degree felony, and if the unborn baby died “as a result of the offense,” the penalty would increase to a first degree felony with the potential of a life sentence.

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Texas State Border Officials Fear Large Spikes in Overdose Deaths with Drug Traffic Increases

Texas Department of Public Safety SUV

Texas officials said Thursday they’re worried about dramatic spikes in drug overdose deaths in some areas of the state as illegal border crossings and drug trafficking have picked up since President Joe Biden took office.

Gov. Greg Abbott joined Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steve McCraw and Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn on Thursday in Fort Worthto provide an update on the border crisis.

“We’re heading for a 50 percent increase in overdose deaths in Tarrant County alone,” Waybourn warned, noting that the amount of drugs flooding into Tarrant County has skyrocketed even with DPS intervention.

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Over 20 Million Hold Concealed Carry Permits as Supreme Court Test Case Looms

Person shooting a hand gun in a shooting range

More than 20 million Americans currently hold a permit to carry a concealed weapon, a historically high number that comes ahead of what will likely be a landmark Supreme Court ruling regarding carry rights under the Second Amendment.

The court last month said it would take up an appeal by two U.S. gun owners on the question of whether or not the Second Amendment protects an American’s right to carry a concealed firearm. Previous court rulings have affirmed that the amendment protects the individual right of American citizens to own guns.

The concealed carry question has eluded constitutional scrutiny thus far, even as the number of Americans possessing concealed permits has soared to historic levels.

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Left-Wing Groups Sue to Stop ‘Sanctuary for the Unborn’ Ordinance

baby sleeping in crib

Planned Parenthood and the ACLU filed a lawsuit against Lubbock, Texas on Monday after the city declared itself a “sanctuary city for the unborn” ordinance that seeks to outlaw abortions.

The ordinance was passed by local voters earlier this month over the opposition of City Council members who warned it would cause a costly legal fight, the Texas Tribune reported.

The lawsuit seeks to stop the abortion ban which would reportedly take effect on June 1.

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‘Reproductive Rights Are in Danger’: Abortion Advocates, Dems Melt Down as Supreme Court Reviews Case Challenging Roe v. Wade

Abortion advocates and Democrats reacted with anger and fear to news that the Supreme Court would review a case directly challenging aspects of Roe v. Wade, warning that “reproductive rights are in danger.”

The court announced Monday that it will hear Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization beginning in October, and a decision on the case will likely come by June 2022, CNBC reported. This will be the first major abortion case in which all three of former President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court justice appointees participate, including Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who gained a seat on the court after a contentious confirmation process in October.

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Commentary: The Rise of the New State Church

Saint Marys Cathedral, Natchez, United States

The United States is historically a Christian country, that is, it was founded by Christians and its population remains largely Christian to this day. The speeches and statements of our presidents, our official holidays, the prayers that are said before the opening of Congress and the Supreme Court, the imagery we see on official buildings all attest to the religious, indeed Christian, foundation of our nation. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court in an 1892 decision declared explicitly that “we are a Christian nation.”

Nevertheless, at least until recent days, Americans have understood that we live in a pluralistic society where Protestants, Catholics, Jews, even atheists, were equal before each other and equal before the law. There was no official church at the federal level that would require belief, assent, or obedience. This is not to say that there have not been dark times in our history when we failed to live up to our ideals. Catholics may recall times when our churches were burned and there were riots against us. But the highest American aspiration has always been that all should be treated equally, that a Jew should get the same treatment in a court of law as a Methodist or a Muslim.

Our twin understanding of our country’s deep religious roots coupled with an ideal of religious freedom grew out of the English tradition of religious toleration. The English had an official state church, but the English also recognized the importance of providing dissenters with some measure of freedom. The Act of Toleration of 1689 provided this freedom.

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Commentary: Manchin Saves the Filibuster for Now, so House Democrats Call Supreme Court Packing ‘Infrastructure’

Joe Manchin

On April 7, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) penned an oped for the Washington Post entitled, “I will not vote to eliminate or weaken the filibuster,” appearing to foreclose any possibility of President Joe Biden ramming through major changes to law on a slim partisan basis expanding the Supreme Court, nationalizing election law, expanding statehood to D.C. or Puerto Rico, and so forth.

“The filibuster is a critical tool to protecting that input and our democratic form of government. That is why I have said it before and will say it again to remove any shred of doubt: There is no circumstance in which I will vote to eliminate or weaken the filibuster,” Manchin wrote, appearing to salvage the nation’s two-party system — for now.

But not so fast, say House Democrats, who last week unveiled a plan to expand the Supreme Court from nine to 13 justices, the Judiciary Act of 2021.

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Poll: Majority of Americans Oppose Expanding the U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Supreme Court

Democrats enthralled their base and alarmed Republicans with the recent announcement of a new push to add four justices to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the latest polling suggests the majority of Americans don’t favor expanding the highest court in the land.

New polling released by Rasmussen Tuesday found that only a third of likely voters support adding justices to the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, 55% of likely voters oppose expanding the bench, which has remained at nine justices for over 150 years.

The poll surveyed 1,000 likely voters between April 15 and April 18 of last week. Respondents were asked:

“The U.S. Supreme Court as defined by law has nine members – a chief justice and eight associate justices, all appointed to lifetime terms. Do you favor or oppose increasing the number of justices on the U.S. Supreme Court?”

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Biden Administration Won’t Define ‘Sex’ as Biological as Title IX Review Starts

Women's soccer game

The Biden administration has rejected a petition to define sex in biological terms as it reviews the Trump administration’s Title IX policies on women’s sports and sexual misconduct proceedings.

The rejection came a day after the Department of Education announced it was soliciting public input on implementing President Biden’s March 8 executive order on sex discrimination.

The Women’s Liberation Front (WoLF), a self-described radical feminist group that opposes transgender policies, said it was pleased that the department did not reject its legal arguments out of hand.

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Commentary: Keep Nine to Keep the Independent Judiciary

Congressional Democrats have introduced legislation that would add four more justices to the U.S. Supreme Court, boosting the number of justices on the bench from nine to 13, as Democrat congressional leaders are going all-in on packing the Supreme Court.

This is just more evidence that the very slender, far-left Democrat majority intends to seize and maintain power using any tactic available, even if it means destroying the independence of the judicial branch of government.

Given that court packing is now actively in play, every GOP Senator and House Member along with any rational Democrat members of Congress must push back by cosponsoring the Keep Nine constitutional amendment by Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), S.J. Res. 9, and Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.), H.J. Res. 11.

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Biden’s Court Packing Committee Contains an Army of Professors Open to Altering Supreme Court

Joe Biden walking with his administration, wearing masks

President Joe Biden unveiled a new commission to explore the possibility of packing the Supreme Court. Although the commission does contain some constitutional originalists, it is heavily staffed by legal professors with revisionist views on the nation’s top judicial body.

The Biden administration unveiled a “Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States,” which will “provide an analysis of the principal arguments in the contemporary public debate for and against Supreme Court reform” — including “the length of service and turnover of justices on the Court” and “the membership and size of the Court.”

Although the White House insists that the commission is meant to be “bipartisan,” several of its members — both right-leaning and left-leaning — appear to hold some degree of revisionist views on the Supreme Court.

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Commentary: Left is Using Supreme Court Commission to Change Court’s Decisions, Not to Improve It

U.S. Supreme Court

Today, President Joe Biden signed an executive order creating the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States. The White House announcement and the members chosen for this commission raise serious questions about its real purpose and concerns about its impact on the independence of the judiciary.

The most obvious question is why the Supreme Court needs to be examined at all. The simple answer is that the left wants a judiciary in general, and a Supreme Court in particular, that is likely to decide cases that will further a leftist political agenda.

Results that are politically correct—not judicially correct—are what matter to the left, and the left is not satisfied with the current Supreme Court’s decisions of late. Therefore, it wants to create one in its own image.

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Liberal Activists Pressure Justice Breyer to Retire Because He’s Against Court-Packing

Justice Breyer

Liberal activists increased calls for Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer to step down Friday after he spoke out against packing the court.

Breyer spoke with Harvard Law School Students earlier this week and warned them that packing the court could negatively affect the United States rule of law.

“Proposals have been recently made to increase the number of Supreme Court justices. I’m sure that others will discuss related political arguments,” he said, Fox News reported. “This lecture reflects my own effort to be certain that those who are going to debate these questions … also consider an important institutional point. Consider it. Namely, how would court packing reflect and affect the rule of law itself?”

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Commentary: Running Out of Choices on Tech Monopolies

It is not often that a concurring opinion of the Supreme Court calls for in-depth comment, but Justice Thomas’ opinion, in Joseph R. Biden Hr., President of the United States, et al v. Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, et al., is an exception.

The case arises out of the suit by Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University against former president Donald Trump. Knight sued Donald Trump on First Amendment grounds for blocking Knight from accessing the comment thread of Trump’s Twitter feed.

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Biden Admin Won’t Consider Limiting Immigration for Migrants Who Will Depend on Government Benefits

The Biden administration told the Supreme Court Tuesday it will not seek to expand the Trump-era decision to limit immigration for migrants who will depend on government benefits, NBC News reported.

The Department of Homeland Security under the Trump administration was working to expand the definition of “public charge” to include denying admission to migrants who might rely primarily on government benefits as a source of income, NBC News reported. Any migrant needing government assistance for over one year in any three-year period would have been included in the expanded definition.

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Supreme Court Sides with Student Whose Christian Beliefs Were Suppressed by Georgia College Campus

In a rare nearly-unanimous decision, the Supreme Court sided with a Christian college student whose right to freedom of expression and freedom of religion were initially silenced by his college campus in Georgia, as reported by ABC News.

The 8-1 decision was led by Justice Clarence Thomas, with Chief Justice John Roberts being the sole dissenting vote. Writing for the majority, Justice Thomas said that Chike Uzuegbunam, an African-American Evangelical Christian, can seek nominal damages from Georgia Gwinnett College, after officials at the school told him he was not allowed to hand out Christian literature on the campus’s “free speech zone.” This comes even after the school reversed course from its initial restrictions, and after Uzuegbunam ultimately graduated.

“It is undisputed that he experienced a complete violation of his constitutional rights when respondents enforced their speech policies against him,” Thomas wrote. “Because ‘every violation [of a right] imports damage,’ nominal damages can redress Uzuegbunam’s injury even if he cannot or chooses not to qualify that harm in economic terms.”

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