Tag: National courts

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National

NYC mayor lambastes stop-and-frisk ruling

Nicholas Peart, Lilat Clarkson, Leroy Downes, Devin Almonar and David Ourlicht, left to right, plaintiffs in the stop and frisk case, pose for a photo after a news conferece at the Center for Constitutional Rights, in New York, Monday, Aug. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/Richard Drew) by Colleen Long Associated Press Writer NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge’s stinging rebuke of the police department’s stop-and-frisk policy as discriminatory could usher in a return to the days of high violent crime rates and end New York’s tenure as “America’s safest big city,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg warned.

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National

Vote suppression alleged in close Fla. election

In this July 11, 2013 photo, former Sopchoppy City Commissioner Anginita Rosier poses for a photo in Tallahassee, Fla. State authorities are investigating her complaint that Sopchoppy city workers suppressed the black vote. (AP Photo/Brendan Farrington) by Brendan FarringtonAssociated Press Writer SOPCHOPPY, Fla. (AP) — A small Florida Panhandle town best known for its annual Worm Grunting Festival is at the center of an investigation into charges the white city clerk suppressed the Black vote in an election where the Black mayor lost by a single vote and a Black city commissioner was also ousted. Both losing candidates and three Black voters have filed complaints, now being investigated by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, that City Clerk Jackie Lawhon made it more difficult for Blacks to cast ballots by questioning their residency. The candidates also allege Lawhon abandoned her duty to remain neutral and actively campaigned for the three Whites on the ballot.

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Business

Same-sex ruling has employers tweaking benefits

Demonstrators hold flags and chant in front of the Supreme Court in Washington on the second day of gay marriage cases before the court. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File) by Sam Hananel Associated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court’s landmark ruling on same-sex marriage has private employers around the country scrambling to make sure their employee benefit plans comply with the law.

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National

Obama: Court rights a wrong; country better off

President Barack Obama and family walk toward Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., June 26, before their week long trip to Senegal, South Africa, and Tanzania. ( AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana) WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama hailed the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act on Wednesday, declaring the court “has righted a wrong, and our country is better off for it.”

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National

States promise quick action on election laws

Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., accompanied by fellow members of the Congressional Black Caucus express disappointment in the Supreme Court’s decision on Shelby County v. Holder that invalidates Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, June 25, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Lewis, a prominent activist in the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960′s, recalled being attacked and beaten trying to help people in Mississippi to register and vote in the 1960′s. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) by Bill Barrow ATLANTA (AP) — Across the South, Republicans are working to take advantage of a new political landscape after a divided U.S. Supreme Court freed all or part of 15 states, many of them in the old Confederacy, from having to ask Washington’s permission before changing election procedures in jurisdictions with histories of discrimination.

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National

Gay rights supporters erupt in cheers over ruling

California’s Proposition 8 plaintiffs, Kris Perry and Sandy Steir walk into the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen) WASHINGTON (AP) — Chanting “DOMA is Dead,” supporters of same-sex marriage burst into cheers Wednesday at news of the Supreme Court’s decision invalidating part of a law denying gay marriage partners the same federal benefits heterosexual couples enjoy.

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National

High court sends back Texas race-based plan

In this Oct. 10, 2012 file photo, Abigail Fisher, right, who sued the University of Texas, walks outside the Supreme Court in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File) by Mark ShermanWASHINGTON (AP) — Affirmative action in college admissions survived Supreme Court review Monday in a consensus decision that avoided the difficult constitutional issues surrounding a challenge to the University of Texas admission plan.

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National

Affirmative action ruling contest: race vs. class

In this Sept. 27, 2012 photo, students walk through the University of Texas at Austin campus in Austin, Texas. This giant flagship campus – once slow to integrate – is now among the most diverse the country. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File) by Justin PopeAP Education Writer In post-Great Recession America, which is the bigger barrier to opportunity — race or class? A decade ago, the U.S. Supreme Court kept the focus on race as a barrier, upholding the right of colleges to make limited use of racial preferences to ensure a diverse student body. But in a ruling due this month, the court is widely expected to roll back that decision. Such an outcome would shift attention more toward a less constitutionally controversial practice: giving a boost to socio-economically disadvantaged students, regardless of race. If that happens, it would reflect more than just a more conservative makeup of the justices. Over the last decade, clogged social mobility and rising economic inequality have shifted the conversation on campuses and in the country as a whole. As a barrier to opportunity, class is getting more attention, while race is fading.

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National

Supreme Court rules police can collect DNA from arrestees

This photo taken in April 2009, provided by the Salisbury, Md., Police Department, shows Alonzo Jay King Jr. A narrowly divided Supreme Court ruled Monday that police can collect DNA from people arrested but not convicted of serious crimes, a tool that more than half the states already use to help crack unsolved crimes. (AP photo/Salisbury Police Department via Salisbury Daily Times)WASHINGTON (AP) — A sharply divided Supreme Court on Monday cleared the way for police to take a DNA swab from anyone they arrest for a serious crime, endorsing a practice now followed by more than half the states as well as the federal government.

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Metro

Ex-Pa. Justice Melvin gets house arrest, probation

JOAN ORIE MELVIN (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File) by Joe Mandak PITTSBURGH (AP) — Former state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin and her sister avoided prison time for their corruption convictions but were sentenced Tuesday to house arrest for what a judge called crimes of “arrogance.”