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kc135topboom
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Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 8:56 pm

The US Supreme Court today overturned Judge Sonia Sotomayor's ruling on the New Haven, CT Firefighters promotion case.

Judge Sotomayor was one of a 3 judge panel on the 2nd Circuit if the US Court of Appeals, in New York City, who ruled against white firefighters anti-discrimination suit against New Haven, CT. The case was called Ricci v. DeStefano.

Some people have also referred to this case as a landmark reverse discrimination case.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...2009/06/29/AR2009062901608_pf.html

Judge Sotomayor is President Obama's pick to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter. Judge Sotomayor still must be confirmed as a US Supreme Court Justice by the US Senate.
 
max550
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:13 pm

I can only imagine what the decision would have been with a crazy liberal like Sotomayor on the bench.
 
Alias1024
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:18 pm

It was a 5-4 decision.

This wasn't a judicial smackdown of Judge Sotomayor. While certainly interesting to see the Supreme Court overturn the ruling of a nominee, I certainly don't believe it discredits the qualifications or abilities of Ms. Sotomayor as a potential Supreme Court Justice.
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MaverickM11
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:25 pm

I haven't read the minority opinion other than the snippets in articles, but it seems to support the idea that racism isn't about the process but the outcome. How can anyone ensure the outcome in any scenario is proportionally racially balanced to avoid lawsuit?  

[Edited 2009-06-29 14:32:42]
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Tugger
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:25 pm

How many of the justices on the Supreme Court have had their rulings overturned? Just curious if it is not that unusual.

Also I realize that it was not Sotomayor's "ruling" per se but rather a ruling by the 3 judge panel of the court of appeals.

Tugg
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jpetekyxmd80
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:26 pm



Quoting Max550 (Reply 1):
I can only imagine what the decision would have been with a crazy liberal like Sotomayor on the bench.

Hmm...let's think about this one. What do you think would happen?

It's not very incomprehensible, really. Sotomayor is being nominated to replace Justice Souter. Souter dissented from the majority in this case. Presumably, Sotamayor would have done the same.

I agree with the opinion of the majority in this case, but your comments are nothing but unwarranted scare tactics and exaggeration trying to create a 'liberal fear' or something like that.

So really, you can online imagine what the decision would have been? The exact same. It doesn't get any clearer than that.
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max550
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:29 pm



Quoting Tugger (Reply 4):
How many of the justices on the Supreme Court have had their rulings overturned? Just curious if it is not that unusual.

All of them had rulings overturned when they were federal appeals court justices.

Quoting JpetekYXMD80 (Reply 5):
Hmm...let's think about this one. What do you think would happen?

It's not very incomprehensible, really. Sotomayor is being nominated to replace Justice Souter. Souter dissented from the majority in this case. Presumably, Sotamayor would have done the same.

I agree with the opinion of the majority in this case, but your comments are nothing but unwarranted scare tactics and exaggeration trying to create a 'liberal fear' or something like that.

So really, you can online imagine what the decision would have been? The exact same. It doesn't get any clearer than that.

I meant that sarcastically, which I'm not good at expressing while typing. I know the result would have been exactly the same.
 
jpetekyxmd80
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:35 pm



Quoting Max550 (Reply 6):
I meant that sarcastically, which I'm not good at expressing while typing. I know the result would have been exactly the same.

Oh, understood. Sorry for being a bit harsh there.


Smileys can help with the sarcasm thing.
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LAXintl
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:35 pm

I'm glad the fire fighters prevailed. I think its rather disgusting to hold back the best candidates for a position especially one like this which truly has life and death implications because of ones race.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
ikramerica
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:40 pm



Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 3):
but it seems to support the idea that racism isn't about the process but the outcome

Which is the excuse these courts have been using to deny opportunities to white males for at least 20 years now. Not only is white male a strike against you when test scores and other measures are equal, but it's used against you when your performance is BETTER, because the outcome of "letting" you have what you earned would be a racist outcome.

I've experienced this a few times in my life, and it sucks. Mostly in college admissions and then recruiting after college, but also in things like writing fellowships and internships where it is made quite clear that white males will NOT get a spot (and looking at their history, never have). I knew the outcome in school because I knew the people being chosen ahead of me and how I compared to them on all levels. With the fellowships, they put the winners' pictures online. Not a white male among them for years. The question is: while it might make sense to let a 60 year old racist know what it's like to have the tables turned, how exactly is it fair to do that to a 18 year old kid who did nothing wrong, or a fireman who just wants a better life for him and his family?

All it does is engender a bitterness that didn't exist before the discriminatory act...
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max550
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:50 pm



Quoting JpetekYXMD80 (Reply 7):

Oh, understood. Sorry for being a bit harsh there.


Smileys can help with the sarcasm thing.

No problem, I should have made it more obvious, I'll go with the smileys next time  yes 
 
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kc135topboom
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:51 pm



Quoting Max550 (Reply 1):
I can only imagine what the decision would have been with a crazy liberal like Sotomayor on the bench.

Since Judge Sotomayor will replace Justice Souter, who's ruling have mostly been liberal, she will not change the current balance of the court

Quoting Tugger (Reply 4):
How many of the justices on the Supreme Court have had their rulings overturned?

None.

Quoting JpetekYXMD80 (Reply 5):
It's not very incomprehensible, really. Sotomayor is being nominated to replace Justice Souter. Souter dissented from the majority in this case. Presumably, Sotamayor would have done the same.

Actually, she would have had to recuse herself from hearing, and deciding on this case, as it was a review of a decision she already made. Chief Justice Roberts recussed himself from a case he heard while a judge at the Washington Circuit Court shortly after he was confirmed as the Chief Justice.

If she did not do that volunteerly, the Chief Justice (Roberts) of the SCOTUS must remove her from hearing the case when it comes before the SCOTUS. Justices cannot hear cases they ruled on while at a lower court.
 
max550
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 10:02 pm



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 11):
None.

You might want to look into that, since it's untrue. I would provide some links for you but I'm already running late for work.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 11):
Chief Justice Roberts recussed himself from a case he heard while a judge at the Washington Circuit Court shortly after he was confirmed as the Chief Justice.

He did, and his ruling was overturned 5-3(assuming you're talking about Hamdan v. Rumsfeld)
 
dxing
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 10:05 pm



Quoting Alias1024 (Reply 2):
It was a 5-4 decision.

This wasn't a judicial smackdown of Judge Sotomayor.

5-4 is just that but a reading of the dissent by Justice Ginsburg will show that event the dissenting Justices thought the appeals court did a pretty poor job of adjudicating in this instance.

Quoting Max550 (Reply 6):
All of them had rulings overturned when they were federal appeals court justices.

How many of them have been accused of not looking at the Consitutionality of the law? That was one of the critisicms of Judge Sotomayor in this case.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 11):
Since Judge Sotomayor will replace Justice Souter, who's ruling have mostly been liberal, she will not change the current balance of the court

Absolutely and it doesn't matter what her judicial record has been, she's going to be confirmed.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 11):
Quoting Tugger (Reply 4):
How many of the justices on the Supreme Court have had their rulings overturned?

None.

 rotfl   rotfl  I thought the same thing. It should read "how many of the Justices that were appelate court judges had their rulings as appelate court judges overturned?" Supreme Court decisions cannot be overturned by any court.
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Tugger
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 10:16 pm

Curious. How does this:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 11):
Quoting Tugger (Reply 4):
How many of the justices on the Supreme Court have had their rulings overturned?

None.

reconcile with this:

Quoting Max550 (Reply 6):

All of them had rulings overturned when they were federal appeals court justices.

I am of course referring to any decisions made prior to their appointment to the SC, which rulings of course can't be overturned. Also whyhave they been overturned (or which rulings have been challenged but ultimately supported by a higher court)?

Thanks,
Tugg
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tsaord
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 11:11 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 8):
I'm glad the fire fighters prevailed. I think its rather disgusting to hold back the best candidates for a position especially one like this which truly has life and death implications because of ones race.

I have been keeping an eye on this case and I am pleased with the outcome, and I'm African American. I don't want a job handed to me I didn't qualify for. However there is still discrimination in the work place everyday.


A lot of the Supreme courts rulings have been pretty close. 5-4. I wonder why that is.
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Yellowstone
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Mon Jun 29, 2009 11:27 pm

The interesting thing about the case is that New Haven was pretty much bound to get sued whatever they did. Throw out the test, and they get sued by the white firefighters for reverse discrimination. Keep the test, and they get sued by the black firefighters under the disparate impact clause.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 3):
I haven't read the minority opinion other than the snippets in articles, but it seems to support the idea that racism isn't about the process but the outcome. How can anyone ensure the outcome in any scenario is proportionally racially balanced to avoid lawsuit?

The idea is that a seemingly racist outcome - such as no blacks passing the exam - can reveal hidden or inadvertant racism in the process that led to that outcome.
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D L X
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:06 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 8):
I think its rather disgusting to hold back the best candidates for a position

They didn't hold back the best candidates, they held back the candidates that scored best on the test. Those two things are not necessarily the same.

While many on here are lauding this opinion (likely because they like the result, and not the reasoning) I can't yet share this jubilation. There are some real problems with this result. The City of New Haven punted the test because they feared it was discriminatory. Let's forget about whether the test (which none of us have seen) was or wasn't discriminatory for a second, and assume that it was. This opinion actually stands in the way of a municipality that wants to get rid of results that were actually discriminatory. That's scary, isn't it?

Quoting Tsaord (Reply 15):
However there is still discrimination in the work place everyday.

And now it will be harder to eradicate it when it is found.

Quoting DXing (Reply 13):
How many of them have been accused of not looking at the Consitutionality of the law? That was one of the critisicms of Judge Sotomayor in this case.

The case was decided on statutory grounds, not constitutional.
 
texan
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:07 am



Quoting Max550 (Reply 1):
I can only imagine what the decision would have been with a crazy liberal like Sotomayor on the bench.

Sotomayor is a moderate. The left wing has nearly as many concerns about her as the right wing. She is moderately pro-business, not a slam dunk on abortion rights, and there are other issues on which we just do not know how she would rule. If you think she is a crazy liberal, you must be somewhere to the right of Pat Buchanan and one of the same people who thinks Bill Clinton was a crazy liberal. But, as was said about Clinton and could be said about Sotomayor: "[N]o one but a fool or a Republican ever took h[er] for a liberal."

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Thread starter):
The US Supreme Court today overturned Judge Sonia Sotomayor's ruling on the New Haven, CT Firefighters promotion case.

Oh dear lord no! We can't have her appointed now!!! An appellate justice who joined in, but did not author, an opinion at the Court of Appeals level that was overturned by the Supreme Court is obviously not qualified to be confirmed to the Supreme Court. After all, it is not like we appointed Scalia after an opinion written by Robert Bork in which Scalia joined was not only struck down by the Supreme Court but caused a huge public uproar.

Judges are overturned. It happens when they write their own opinions. Sotomayor was not the author, she joined the opinion of a panel that issued a unanimous decision, basing their decision on Second Circuit and Supreme Court precedent. The issue then went to the Supreme Court, who clarified the law in this regard. Wow! Our system worked and continues to work, even though we allow judges who have had decisions overturned make decisions on the Supreme Court. Who would have ever guessed?

Texan
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ltbewr
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:55 am

Sotomayer was one of a panel of 3 Circuit Court judges who decided this case when it was before them. I believe the weak decision was in large part as they didn't want to decide it with it's underlying race issues and they knew it would go to the SCOTUS any way they decided.

The much deeper issue of Affirmative Action or 'diversity policies' is the still limited economic opportunites and access to good qualtity basic education for Blacks for generations. I would assume the test was strictly on experiences a firefighting officer could have to face, so to me the poor qualtiy of basic education may be limiting the Black firefighters trying to qualify.
 
ikramerica
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:59 am



Quoting Tsaord (Reply 15):
I have been keeping an eye on this case and I am pleased with the outcome, and I'm African American. I don't want a job handed to me I didn't qualify for. However there is still discrimination in the work place everyday.

Absolutely no doubt there. I see it around (and it's not just white on X group, either). I see men discriminate against women, women do the same to men when they get into positions of authority, etc.

In hiring, I am all for, when all else is equal or roughly equivalent, looking at race as a deciding factor if your company or organization historically has had a bad record on race that you'd like to correct. In that situation, nothing is being "given" to anyone. It's a valid situation to help "right wrongs of the past" because nobody is harmed by the act.

But as you point out, this is not one of those situations. This is a situation of throwing out a standard in order to promote one group over another, and is no different than companies who do the same to discriminate against minorities or women, taking the less qualified white candidate. That kind of thing shouldn't be allowed in any form, and the fact that Sotomayor thinks it should is what many of us can't get behind.

It's similar to relaxing the strength and stamina tests for fire fighters, life guards, etc. in order to allow more women into the profession, which has been done in various places around the USA. But I would imagine, using her "latino woman experience" that she claims is more valuable, she'd be behind that, too. Can't put words in her mouth, but it's a hunch...
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
us330
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:12 am

Everybody gets rulings overturned. That's not that big of a deal. It just so happens that one of her rulings happens to get overturned right as she is being nominated. More coincidence than anything else.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Thread starter):
The US Supreme Court today overturned Judge Sonia Sotomayor's ruling on the New Haven, CT Firefighters promotion case.

Judge Sotomayor was one of a 3 judge panel on the 2nd Circuit if the US Court of Appeals, in New York City, who ruled against white firefighters anti-discrimination suit against New Haven, CT. The case was called Ricci v. DeStefano.

Some people have also referred to this case as a landmark reverse discrimination case

I am stunned that the courts allowed it to go this far. This case, IMHO, was pretty much a slam dunk case for the firefighters.

Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 16):
The interesting thing about the case is that New Haven was pretty much bound to get sued whatever they did. Throw out the test, and they get sued by the white firefighters for reverse discrimination. Keep the test, and they get sued by the black firefighters under the disparate impact clause.

That's what others have said. What I didn't realize, though, and I don't think many others realize, is that this wasn't just a straightforward test on paper.
It was 60% oral and 40% written. New Haven actually hired an independent firm to come up with a "colorblind test," and for the oral portion, brought in a team of 30 managerial level firemen, 2/3 of which were minorities.

Based on these facts and coupled with having lived in New Haven for four years, albeit as a student, it leads me to think that DeStefano was trying to appeal to his black constituents. New Haven still has some palpable racial tension, and blacks make up a significant portion of the urban community. I can't say for sure why the test results were thrown out, but I can confidently say that the City's stated belief that the test may have been slanted to favor certain racial groups was certainly not the real reason.

New Haven is a one horse, Democratic machine town, and DeStefano is as bad as they get. City officials routinely engage in doublespeak, which is why I wouldn't be all that shocked if this was another case of it.

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
And now it will be harder to eradicate it when it is found

Disagree. This was a case of discrimination, plain and simple. This ruling acknowledges that minorities aren't the only ones that are discriminated against in the workplace.
 
dw747400
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:15 am

I oppose Sotomayor for any number of reasons, but I don't see a 5-4 of SCOTUS as a major issue in her nomination. And it should not be--after all, its hardly an overwhelming majority, and the point of the appeals process is to allow for such reversals. All it does is reiterate the ideological divide associated with the issue. This is not news. Had Obama already appointed another judge to the SC, the decision would likely have been different.

It certainly shows that Sotomayor is a left-leaning judge--but it doesn't show incontrovertible evidence of judicial incompetence that some make it out to be.
CFI--Certfied Freakin Idiot
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:48 am



Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
And now it will be harder to eradicate it when it is found.

How so? The minority view would support that everything that isn't racially proportional is a sign of racism.
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
D L X
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:22 am



Quoting Us330 (Reply 21):
Disagree. This was a case of discrimination, plain and simple.

Against whom? Did you see the test? If you haven't, you might not know whom was being discriminated against.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 23):
How so? The minority view would support that everything that isn't racially proportional is a sign of racism.

I'm not sure I agree with the dissenting opinion. But proportional results wasn't the issue in the case. The ruling is problematic because it says thinking you have a bad, discriminatory test isn't good enough. But you could throw the test out for other reasons.

Think about this: if New Haven wanted to toss the results because they thought the test results suggested that it discriminated against people born in January, they could do it, no problem. Even though there's no history of discriminating by month. In fact, the idea itself is laughable. But *there* has been a long history of discrimination against certain groups, especially in the fire departments in the northeast. And "standardized" testing is often the culprit. (Does a standardized test tell how good a squad leader someone is? Do you think military promotions are done by standardized tests?) This ruling says that if the city actually suspects real discrimination led to disparate results, there's nothing that can be done.
 
NIKV69
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:53 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 8):
I'm glad the fire fighters prevailed. I think its rather disgusting to hold back the best candidates for a position especially one like this which truly has life and death implications because of ones race.

Exactly, her decision was assinine and total nonsense. Glad someone stepped up and overturned it. This woman is a loon.
Hey that guy with the private jet can bail us out! Why? HE CAN AFFORD IT!
 
D L X
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 3:18 am



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 25):
her decision was assinine and total nonsense.

Quick NIK, tell me what her decision said.
 
texan
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:41 am



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 25):
her decision

First of all, it is not a decision, it is an opinion. They are called judicial opinions. Secont, whose decision? She did not author it, she joined it. So did the other judge on the panel. It is therefore not her opinion. She has probably had an opinion reversed by the Supreme Court. As has Scalia most likely. So what?

Something the overwhelming majority of people seem to forget here. The judiciary is an independent branch of government not beholden to the political process. This allows the judiciary to decide cases and issue opinions on matters based on the law, not their political leanings. Remember: Stevens, Souter, Blackmun, et al are (Stevens/Souter) or were (Blackmun) Republicans. But they do not let their politics color their interpretation of the law. For all we know, Sotomayor could end up being a moderately conservative justice. From what I have seen of her opinions, she is a middle of the road justice who is a stickler for the law and follows precedent. The same cannot be said for at least one Supreme Court justice, who has said he believes there is basically no value in precedent. Sotomayor has a low chance of being an "activist" justice since she believes in following precedent unless Congressional intent shows otherwise or the law/action violates the Constitution.

Texan
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us330
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:38 am



Quoting D L X (Reply 24):
Against whom? Did you see the test? If you haven't, you might not know whom was being discriminated against.

Discrimination against whites is still discrimination, and New Haven's actions did just that.
 
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Pellegrine
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:52 am

Great for the firefighters, but... This case only proves that the United States is still a very racially screwed up country and there has been no solution yet to bridge the white/other gap in achievement, in employment, in education, and in quality of life. With the recent fashion of turning back affirmative action, a new and better solution must be formed to level the playing field. For how long must black Americans suffer from the morally repugnant history of this nation? For how long before people are permitted to forget the bloody past? Many are conveniently forgetting already.
oh boy, here we go!!!
 
D L X
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:26 am



Quoting Us330 (Reply 28):
Discrimination against whites is still discrimination, and New Haven's actions did just that.

I don't think you understood what I was saying.

Did you see the test? It is possible that the test itself was discriminatory against minorities. This ruling would prevent the city from addressing this discrimination.
 
baroque
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:48 am



Quoting Max550 (Reply 10):
No problem, I should have made it more obvious, I'll go with the smileys next time

Ever thought of visiting Aus Max? I don't think you would need to splatter the smilies so much. You write some of the best pastiche and irony around and then you have to excuse it with a smilie - c'mon!! Oops, might be misunderestimated.  bigthumbsup 
 
tsaord
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:51 am



Quoting D L X (Reply 30):
It is possible that the test itself was discriminatory against minorities.

OMG I want to curse lol. How is a test discriminatory against anyone? Was there something the whites and that one latino knew that that African Americans didn't?

But what that showed was what is going on in the country. Whites out pace African Americans in just about everything. We still don't know why that is. I have my own opinions about it but I won't air them here.
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par13del
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:19 pm



Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 9):
All it does is engender a bitterness that didn't exist before the discriminatory act...



Quoting Tsaord (Reply 32):
But what that showed was what is going on in the country. Whites out pace African Americans in just about everything. We still don't know why that is. I have my own opinions about it but I won't air them here.

Well if someone woke up today and looked around you would never know that for decades the education system was denied to certains races, that technical jobs then followed the natural line of progression, etc. etc. but thats history and usually there is no reason to study it as what happened in the past cannot repeat itself and has no bearing on what is taking place today, being extreme hence the smiley  Smile

I have not seen the test and would certainley like to see it published, a lot of opinions are flying around pros and cons on this decsion, but the heart of the case is the test, would like to evaluate it for myself.
 
baroque
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:59 pm



Quoting Tsaord (Reply 32):
But what that showed was what is going on in the country. Whites out pace African Americans in just about everything. We still don't know why that is.

So true. The sprints in the Limpics show this time and time again. But look out, Kenyans are good at long distance, and you would have to watch out for KA pollies then???
 
D L X
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:10 pm



Quoting Tsaord (Reply 32):
OMG I want to curse lol. How is a test discriminatory against anyone? Was there something the whites and that one latino knew that that African Americans didn't?

It was an issue at trial that some of the questions had nothing to do with firefighting. Does that help you any?
 
MaverickM11
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:17 pm



Quoting D L X (Reply 24):
The ruling is problematic because it says thinking you have a bad, discriminatory test isn't good enough.

If they followed all the rules and had the magic number of minority sensitive questions and did everything they're supposed to, the only thing that would make them think it was a discriminatory test would be the disproportionate outcome. I don't think they thought they had a bad test--they were afraid they were going to be sued. That option is not closed--they still can be sued by the minorities for the test but as far as I know no one has come forward yet, not even ye olde dependable Sharpton or Jackson.
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pnqiad
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:23 pm



Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 11):
If she did not do that volunteerly, the Chief Justice (Roberts) of the SCOTUS must remove her from hearing the case when it comes before the SCOTUS. Justices cannot hear cases they ruled on while at a lower court.

I don't think even the Chief Justice can force a justice to recuse him/her self. Also - as far as I am aware - recusal is almost always voluntary on the Supreme Court.
 
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:33 pm



Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 16):
Throw out the test, and they get sued by the white firefighters for reverse discrimination. Keep the test, and they get sued by the black firefighters under the disparate impact clause.

I agree with you here, Yellowstone. This was a loose-loose for New haven thee way they administered the firefighter promotion testing.

Quoting Tsaord (Reply 15):
A lot of the Supreme courts rulings have been pretty close. 5-4. I wonder why that is.

Probibly the most contraversal was the 5-4 decision on Bush v. Gore in 2000.

Quoting Texan (Reply 18):
Oh dear lord no! We can't have her appointed now!!! An appellate justice who joined in, but did not author, an opinion at the Court of Appeals level that was overturned by the Supreme Court is obviously not qualified to be confirmed to the Supreme Court.

I never said Sotomayor was not qualified to sit as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court. She is. As a matter of fact, so are you, and I. There is no requirement of ever being a judge, or even having a law degree to be appointed as a Justice on the SCOTUS.
 
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 3:33 pm



Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 36):
I don't think they thought they had a bad test--they were afraid they were going to be sued.

The DEFINITELY thought the latter, without a doubt. You are correct.

But what if they did think they had a bad test? Failing everyone in a certain group can be an indication of such. (Obviously, I'm not saying that disparate impact = bias, but you should definitely investigate it. Smoke doesn't always mean fire, but you should investigate it.)

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 36):
That option [the minorities suing] is not closed--they still can be sued by the minorities for the test but as far as I know no one has come forward yet

You are correct again. But who's going to have the deep pockets needed to sustain a litigation? Besides that, this opinion *requires* litigation, and forbids the city from performing self-help unless they are certain of impending litigation, and are certain that they are going to lose. This is a new rule that is not in Title VII. (Legislating from the bench?) Yes, preventing descrimination now requires the courts.

Here's the thing in Supreme Court opinions: they count for more than just this one time. So, we can definitely discuss what actually happened in this particular case, but you have to be mindful that the opinion will have a great impact on future cases. It bothers me that in virtually any other kind of dispute, the two parties can sit down and hash out their differences and reach an agreement without involving the courts, something that we greatly encourage! But in this instance, the answer is, you have to sue.
 
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:08 pm



Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
The case was decided on statutory grounds, not constitutional.

Agreed, but did not one of the Second Appeals Court's own Judges as well as the majority opinion of the SC as well as the dissenting opinion question the fashion in which the Second's majority overlooked some Constitutional issues in the case in their 3 page summary denial? The decision was not Sotomayor's alone but she had a hand in the summary denial which obviously got shot down in flames for its brevity in both the majority and miniority opinions. The part she had in the Seconds opinion isn't going to stop her nomination either but is should give those paying attention a much better idea of just who is being installed in the Court.
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:38 pm

I take back something I said. Whites out pace African Americans/Blacks in just about everything *except* basketball and track lol.

Then there is an issue with that with me. Black men don't graduate college in high fashion like our white counterparts. However they are the first ones to be pulled from high school or 1/2 years of college for the NBA. Most never finish their college education and are another statistic. But there is no problem with that though. He will have so much money who needs a college education?
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:42 pm

Here's the dissent:
http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/07-1428.ZD.html

Largely non-sense. The test was fair and neutral, but she dissented based on, among other things, whether a written test is the best type of test to choose firefighters. The court is not a consulting firm, Justice Ginsburg. She went on and on about it.

According to her, the city did not act in a discriminatory way, it was just trying to follow the law (the between a rock and a hard place point). And assuming she is right (I can't say for myself, I wasn't at the hearings), it means the law is discriminatory.

[Edited 2009-06-30 12:05:29]
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:43 pm



Quoting DXing (Reply 40):
Agreed, but did not one of the Second Appeals Court's own Judges as well as the majority opinion of the SC as well as the dissenting opinion question the fashion in which the Second's majority overlooked some Constitutional issues in the case in their 3 page summary denial?

Okay, so here's the procedural posture of the case:

1) 264 Fed.Appx. 106 (2d Cir. 2008) - this February 2008 unpublished per curiam opinion (meaning, it is unknown who drafted it) summarily affirmed the district court judgment, finding no fault with its reasoning. The panelists were Judges Pooler (Clinton appointee), Sack (Clinton appointee), and Sotomayor (Bush41/Clinton appointee). The opinion said in its entirety:

Quote:
We affirm, substantially for the reasons stated in the thorough, thoughtful, and well-reasoned opinion of the court below. In this case, the Civil Service Board found itself in the unfortunate position of having no good alternatives. We are not unsympathetic to the plaintiffs' expression of frustration. Mr. Ricci, for example, who is dyslexic, made intensive efforts that appear to have resulted in his scoring highly on one of the exams, only to have it invalidated. But it simply does not follow that he has a viable Title VII claim. To the contrary, because the Board, in refusing to validate the exams, was simply trying to fulfill its obligations under Title VII when confronted with test results that had a disproportionate racial impact, its actions were protected.

2) 530 F.3d 87 (2d Cir. 2008) - This June 2008 per curiam opinion had the same panel (Pooler, Sack, and Sotomayor) and rescinded the first opinion, restating it ever so slightly, basically just adding the citation to the district court's opinion. This opinion basically was the set up for the following, an en banc decision. (En banc means all judges on the circuit deal with it, or at least a substantially greater number than 3.)

3) 530 F.3d 88 (2d Cir. 2008) - This June 2008 en banc order denied resulted from one of the judges that was no on the panel requesting a rehearing en banc. The rehearing was denied by a vote of 7 to 6. Judges Calabresi (Clinton), Straub (Clinton), Pooler (Clinton), Sack (Clinton), Sotomayor (Bush41/Clinton), Katzmann (Clinton), and B.D. Parker (Clinton/Bush43) voted to deny rehearing, and Chief Judge Jacobs (Bush41) and Judges Cabranes (Clinton), Raggi (Reagan/Bush43), Wesley (Bush 43), Hall (Bush 43) and Livingston (Bush 43) dissented.

In this opinion, Judges Calabresi, Katzmann, and Parker each wrote lengthy opinions in support of affirming the district court. Chief Judge Jacobs and Judge Cabranes filed dissenting opinions in favor of having a rehearing. Judge Cabranes' basic complaint was that the original Pooler/Sack/Sotomayor opinion was too short, and simply adopted the reasoning of the district court as the law of the second circuit. (My editorial: There actually is not anything wrong with that, and it has been done before, including by the Supreme Court. This is the principal I heard from Scalia: "everything worth saying has been said, but not everyone has yet said it.") Judge Cabranes did not address the merits of the ruling, just complained that it was too short.

4) The Supreme Court opinion (2009)

Quoting Tsaord (Reply 15):
I don't want a job handed to me I didn't qualify for.

According to the Supreme Court, 77 candidates completed the lieutenant examination—43 whites, 19 blacks, and 15 Hispanics. Of those, 34 candidates passed—25 whites, 6 blacks, and 3 Hispanics. So, a lot of people qualified for the job, including blacks. The problem was that there were not 34 spots, but only 10. They took the top 10 scorers. The 11th, 12th, and 13th, were all black. A similar story existed for the captain's test, where 22 passed: 16 whites, 3 blacks, and 3 Hispanics. Again, since there were only 9 spots, and the top 9 scores were white, all whites were promoted.

So, let's not go too far. There were blacks and hispanics that the test found were qualified.
 
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 7:02 pm



Quoting D L X (Reply 26):
Quick NIK, tell me what her decision said.

That the white firefighters should not get promotions because all blacks scored terrible on the test. Their rights were violated and the overturning was just. This woman needs her head examined. You kidding me? Would you have held the blacks back if the whites didn't score good? I thought the playing field was supposed to be level?
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 7:10 pm



Quoting PNQIAD (Reply 37):
I don't think even the Chief Justice can force a justice to recuse him/her self. Also - as far as I am aware - recusal is almost always voluntary on the Supreme Court.



Quoting PPVRA (Reply 42):
Here's the dissent:
http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/07-1428.ZD.html

Largely non-sense. The test was fair and neutral, but she dissented based on whether a written test is the best type of test to choose firefighters.

Well, that's Justice Ginsberg for you, again trying to strattle both sides of the Constitutional fence. How can she write such a decision, without knowing what the questions were on the test the firefighters all took? New Haven, CT has never released the test they administered to the firefighters.

Ginsberg wrote:

The white firefighters who scored high on New Haven’s promotional exams understandably attract this Court’s sympathy.

But they had no vested right to promotion.

New Haven maintains that it refused to certify the test results because it believed, for good cause, that it would be vulnerable to a Title VII disparate-impact suit if it relied on those results. The Court today holds that New Haven has not demonstrated “a strong basis in evidence” for its plea.

And the kicker:

In so holding, the Court pretends that “[t]he City rejected the test results solely because the higher scoring candidates were white.” Ante, at 20.

In summery, Justice Ginsberg arrived at this conclusion, which is the essence of her decision.

This case presents an unfortunate situation, one New Haven might well have avoided had it utilized a better selection process in the first place. But what this case does not present is race-based discrimination in violation of Title VII. I dissent from the Court’s judgment, which rests on the false premise that respondents showed “a significant statistical disparity,” but “nothing more.” See ante, at 27–28.

How could any sane person arrive at that conclusion?

Clearly 5 Justices disagreed with her that New Haven decided not to promote the firefighters fully based on race.
 
D L X
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 7:29 pm



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 44):
Quoting D L X (Reply 26):
Quick NIK, tell me what her decision said.

That the white firefighters should not get promotions because all blacks scored terrible on the test.

Proof that you did not read the opinion at all. And it's only one paragraph long, so you could have read it. But no, you'd rather assume what it said, then blast it for what you assumed it said.

The other conservatives on this thread have written excellent, thoughtful posts. Consider yourself busted.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 45):
New Haven, CT has never released the test they administered to the firefighters.

That's not quite right. It was the district court that sealed the test, not the city. (If I recall correctly, the city wanted to publish the test.) In any event, the test is part of the record, and was made available to the Justices.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 45):
In so holding, the Court pretends that “[t]he City rejected the test results solely because the higher scoring candidates were white.” Ante, at 20.

In summery, Justice Ginsberg arrived at this conclusion, which is the essence of her decision.

Actually, having read most of the opinion word for word now, that's a pretty good assessment of the majority's position. They do say that the City rejected the test solely because the higher scoring candidates were white. The majority framed the issue (perhaps correctly, I'd agree!) as a case of intentional discrimination (against the whites) versus unintentional discrimination (against the blacks), and whether you can do one to avoid the other. So, in the end, the this particular test itself was not even the issue.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 45):
How could any sane person arrive at that conclusion?

Well, it would appear that you also have assumed that the city rejected the tests solely because the higher scoring candidates were white.
 
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 8:16 pm



Quoting D L X (Reply 46):
It was the district court that sealed the test, not the city. (If I recall correctly, the city wanted to publish the test.) In any event, the test is part of the record, and was made available to the Justices.

I have been looking for the test questions since this decision came out yesterday. A few news media sites said the city has not released the test, and I could not find it anywhere in the two writings from the SCOTUS.

I did not look at the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals written decision. So I didn't know the courts have scene the test.

Quoting D L X (Reply 46):
Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 45):
How could any sane person arrive at that conclusion?

Well, it would appear that you also have assumed that the city rejected the tests solely because the higher scoring candidates were white.

Actually, yes, but there was also one Hispanic firefighter who scored high on the test. Since the city would not certify the results, and I don't know how many of the tested firefighter would have been promoted (obviously it was more than one position) that was my conclusion. We have no idea if that one Hispanic firefighter scored high enough to be promoted. In other words, if he (or she) scored the 3rd highest score on the test, but there were only two positions available, then (presumably) the Hispanic would not get promoted. Additionally, the suit was filed as a race discrimination case with the lower Federal Court (not the 2nd Circuit).

The 2nd Circuit's decision was based, mostly, on the lower courts 47 page written decision, which is why the 2nd Circuit didn't write much in upholding the lower court's decision to throw out the case.
 
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 9:24 pm



Quoting D L X (Reply 43):
My editorial: There actually is not anything wrong with that, and it has been done before, including by the Supreme Court. This is the principal I heard from Scalia: "everything worth saying has been said, but not everyone has yet said it.") Judge Cabranes did not address the merits of the ruling, just complained that it was too short.

Agreed except it seems that both Judge Cabranes as well as the majority and the minority all found the 3 page ruling a little short on explanation when there were obviously issues involved that would go on to the Supreme Court. That, taken with Judge Sotomayor's statements about minorities and the law, namely that minorities should almost always be found in favor, will not keep her off the SC bench but again, should be used to open the eyes of the public as just what sort of Justice she will be and how she will approach cases before her.
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RE: Scotus Overturns Sotomayor

Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:03 pm

Quoting DXing (Reply 48):
Agreed except it seems that both Judge Cabranes as well as the majority and the minority all found the 3 page ruling a little short on explanation when there were obviously issues involved that would go on to the Supreme Court.

They can think that. Doesn't mean they're right. There is a HUGE divide on the court about how much a judge should write about a certain topic. Some academicians want long drawn out opinions, while most practitioners prefer shorter ones. Actually, Sotomayor's track record is that she writes opinions of the first type: overlong. (Is that evidence that Sotomayor did not write the 2d Cir. opinion? Probably not; it's certainly not conclusive.)

But listen to what Cabranes (and the minority, though I have not read that part yet) were saying: we don't take issue with what you said, we take issue with the fact that you weren't long and drawn out about it. Well, if someone else has already done the work, what does it make you when you have to say the exact same thing, but put your name on it? Now, if I were a circuit judge, I would probably rarely give such a short opinion because practitioners look to the circuit to find the law, not the district courts (as much). But the issue of length is one judge's opinion versus another's equally valid opinion.

Quoting DXing (Reply 48):
hat, taken with Judge Sotomayor's statements about minorities and the law, namely that minorities should almost always be found in favor

Where did she say that? That certainly is not her record.

Quoting DXing (Reply 48):
should be used to open the eyes of the public as just what sort of Justice she will be and how she will approach cases before her.

I don't see how the length of a per curiam opinion that we don't even know she wrote will give any information at all as to what kind of Justice Sotomayor will be and how she will approach cases before her.

EDIT: By the way, all 13 circuits of the United States Court of Appeals has a mechanism to affirm the opinions of a lower tribunal without issuing an opinion at all.

http://www.rule-of-law.info/circuit_rules.htm

[Edited 2009-06-30 16:13:24]

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