The high court and the bal­lot

Los Angeles Times - - OPINION -

Re “Defin­ing ‘one per­son, one vote,’ ” Opin­ion, May 29

Bruce Ack­er­man and Ian Ayres have their hopes mis­placed if they be­lieve that the cur­rent U.S. Supreme Court will up­hold the sta­tus quo on drawing po­lit­i­cal dis­tricts ac­cord­ing to to­tal pop­u­la­tion be­cause of a de­sire to pre­serve its cred­i­bil­ity as an “im­par­tial de­fender of the demo­cratic process.”

The five con­ser­va­tive jus­tices are well aware that their party faces a de­mo­graphic Ar­maged­don, and I doubt they sa­vor the pos­si­bil­ity of living out their days as an ir­rel­e­vant mi­nor­ity on the court. Thus their gov­ern­ing prin­ci­ple is sim­ple: un­der­mine democ­racy to pre­serve GOP power.

In this they will not be de­terred by such quaint no­tions as prece­dence, con­sis­tency, cred­i­bil­ity or the plain lan­guage of the Con­sti­tu­tion.

Even­tu­ally democ­racy will tri­umph. The only ques­tion is how much dam­age th­ese jus­tices will do to the court and the coun­try be­fore they fi­nally give up the ghost.

Paul Gulino

Santa Mon­ica

Ack­er­man and Ayres men­tion the phrase “ex­clud­ing In­di­ans not taxed” in the part of the 14th Amend­ment they say sup­ports the idea that con­gres­sional dis­tricts should be drawn ac­cord­ing to pop­u­la­tion. How­ever, they fail to do any anal­y­sis of what that phrase meant to the amend­ment’s framers.

The framers in­serted that phrase for a rea­son, and the piece ne­glects to men­tion what that rea­son might be. With­out an un­der­stand­ing of what that phrase meant to the framers, an anal­y­sis such as the one by Ack­er­man and Ayres is at best in­com­plete and at worst disin­gen­u­ous.

Jim Stein

Re­dondo Beach

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.