I predict that the Supreme Court will grant the emergency petition in the Texas voter-ID case, and reinstate the district court’s stay of enforcement until after the November election.
I predict that the Supreme Court will grant the emergency request in the Texas voter-ID case, and reinstate the district court’s stay of enforcement until after the November election. Which, best as I can tell, makes me a minority of exactly one.
I don’t have time to elaborate much, but I did address pretty thoroughly last week, in this post, what’s become known in the last 10 days or so as “the Purcell principle”–the key legal issue regarding these emergency stay requests to the Supreme Court in all of the voter-access litigation, as, in my opinion, it should apply to the Texas case.
Summarizing quickly why I think that the Court will stay the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals’ stay of the district court’s stay of enforcement of the Texas voter-ID law:
- The Purcell principle cannot possibly justify the disenfranchisement of otherwise-eligible voters—and the voter-ID litigation has now, finally, broken out into mainstream media, and consequently the public’s, consciousness. I think there is a limit to the extent to which the Court is willing to advertise its overt partisanship, and in this instance it would serve no real Republican purpose. There aren’t any major races in Texas that are close enough for this to swing the election to the Democrats.
- Last week, in the Wisconsin voter-ID case, six justices voted to stay the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals’ stay of the district court’s stay of enforcement of that state’s voter-ID law, thus halting enforcement of the statute in the upcoming election. But three justices—Alito, Scalia and Thomas—dissented, citing a technical Court-created procedural nicety that they thought was violated by the majority’s issuance of the stay of the stay. In the Texas case, however, that very procedural nicety would require that the Court stay the appellate court’s stay of the district court’s stay. (Got that? Of course you do!)
Okay, by tomorrow at this time, I probably will be in need of orthopedic surgery to repair those bones I broke when that tree limb I just climbed back out on snapped. We’ll see.