Following an allegation of sexual assault, the confirmation of U.S. Circuit Judge and Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh became more controversial. Now some Democrats, including New Mexico’s two senators, want an investigation into what happened between Kavanaugh and college professor Christine Blasey Ford at a party in high school, where Ford alleged Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her.. New Mexico U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich, a Democrat, issued a statement this week calling for an FBI investigation. “The sexual assault allegation made against Judge Kavanaugh deserves a thorough, professional investigation by the FBI before proceeding with any vote on his nomination to the highest court in the land,” Heinrich said. Heinrich is facing reelection this year and his two challengers both previously said they would vote to confirm Kavanaugh if given the chance.
United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will be in New Mexico next month for an annual law convention. Ginsburg will serve as the keynote speaker for the State Bar of New Mexico’s Bar and Bench conference in August. State Bar executive director Joe Conte said the organization is “excited and grateful” that Ginsburg is willing to come and speak to the legal community. “She’s a woman who’s got decades of life to share with us,” Conte said. Ginsburg recently received immense media attention after she made disparaging remarks about presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.
When the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday struck down Texas’ 2013 abortion restrictions as unconstitutional, it was a victory years in the making for former state Sen. Wendy Davis and her “unruly mob.”
Almost three years to the day after her 11-hour filibuster of the restrictive legislation, the high court’s ruling was in some ways a personal vindication for Davis — and a defining moment for her legacy — particularly after she backed away from the spotlight following a gubernatorial election loss in 2014. But it was also a victory for Texas abortion providers and the reproductive rights community, many of whom were among the thousands that packed into the Texas Capitol to be part of the filibuster. As Davis worked to fill hours of debate time and run the clock to midnight — when a 30-day special session would end — reproductive rights activists watched from the gallery and lined up along the rotunda and halls near the Senate chamber. Some were regulars at the pink dome; others had traveled from around the state. They stayed for as many hours as Davis remained standing on the Senate floor.
After the United States Supreme Court announced Monday that a Texas law that limited where certain abortion procedures could take place was unconstitutional, national abortion rights activists weighed in and praised the court’s decision. The Supreme Court ruled against the Texas law 5-3. Whole Woman’s Health is a clinic that provides reproductive medical services in a handful of states across the country, including one in Las Cruces. Dr. Bhavik Kumar, a doctor with Whole Woman’s Health in Texas, said the decision is a win for Texas. “By striking down HB 2, the court has relieved one of so many obstacles in the path of justice for Texans and so many others around the country,” Kumar said in a statement on Monday.
The state of Texas’ final and most important argument against President Obama’s immigration plan was interrupted just seconds after it began on Monday by one of the more liberal justices on the U.S. Supreme Court. “How can you say that?” Justice Sonia Sotomayor asked Texas Solicitor General Scott Keller, who said the program, Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents, or DAPA, is the most far-reaching in history. The justice pointed to a policy in 1990 that allowed 1.5 million of 4 million undocumented immigrants to remain in the country and work. “It granted basically the same thing, deferred action and work authorization,” she said. “That was a — 40 percent of the immigrant population of the time was affected.”
The state’s arguments before the high court marked the final legal battle over the program Obama announced in 2014 that would shield nearly 5 million undocumented immigrants in the country from deportation proceedings and allow them to apply for a three-year work permit. A decision by the Supreme Court is expected later this year.
Miles Conway is the Communications Director for AFSCME Council 18. On Tuesday, March 29, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court sided with working people and against the wealthy special interests behind the Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association case. Friedrichs was an attempt to restrict our rights to join together through our union so that we are able speak up for one another, improve our communities, our careers, and hold the powerful accountable. Had the ruling gone against labor, the ability and right of public employees and employers to sit down, negotiate and agree to a union security clause would’ve been made illegal overnight. Union security clauses, or “fair-share” provisions are legal today, and must be mutually agreed to by the union workers and the bosses.
The U.S. Senators from New Mexico say it’s time for the Senate to do its job now that the president nominated a candidate to fill the vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court. The two, both Democrats, issued press statements Wednesday morning, shortly after President Barack Obama named Merrick Garland as his choice to fill the vacancy left by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia last month. “I believe the President has done his job,” Sen. Tom Udall said in a conference call at noon on Wednesday. “Now the Senate needs to do ours.” “We have a job to do here in the Senate.
RUBE RENDER is the Curry County Republican Chairman and a local columnist with the Clovis News Journal. Early in the history of our country, the framers of the Constitution took the position that unless that document specifically authorized Congress to pass proposed legislation, they could not act, even if the legislation served a noble purpose. This situation was illustrated in 1794 when Congress wished to provide funding to French refugees from the Haitian Revolution. James Madison famously stated, “I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents.”
Over the years, amendments have been proposed and ratified to correct existing disparities and injustices. Among these are the 15th and the 19th Amendments.
In a decision on Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against an environmental initiative that came from President Barack Obama’s administration. Justice Antonin Scalia, who was part of the majority in the ruling, wrote that the Environmental Protection Agency did not take costs into consideration when the agency used the Clean Air Act for new rules related to emissions from power plants. He and the majority said that the EPA put environmental outcomes over the potential costs to energy producers for regulation. “One would not say that it is even rational, never mind ‘appropriate,’ to impose billions of dollars in economic costs in return for a few dollars in health or environmental benefits. In addition, ‘cost’ includes more than the expense of complying with regulations; any disadvantage could be termed a cost,” Scalia wrote in the ruling.
A ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday leaves the door open for a big change to New Mexico’s redistricting system–if legislators and voters choose to implement the changes. The nation’s high court ruled 5-4 on Monday that an independent redistricting commission in Arizona is constitutional. Arizona is one of sixteen states with similar processes for redistricting. Supporters of such commissions say that by taking the decision out of the hands of partisan politicians, oddly shaped districts designed to protect one party or politician will no longer be the norm. Opponents argued that this meant legislators would be abrogating their constitutional duty on making districts for elections.