Counting By Race: Chapter 124
The seemingly never-ending legal debate over whether or not government can use the race of Americans in awarding benefits or inflicting penalties added another chapter today as a majority of the Supreme Court issued a narrow, Justice Kennedy-authored ruling overturning the decision below in the Ricci case and holding that “we need not reach the question whether respondents’ actions may have violated the Equal Protection Clause. ” Neither the outcome nor the split is surprising. The text of the opinion is here.
One of the most interesting questions that senators questioning Judge Sotomayor could pose is whether this holding or the Equal Protection clause-related precedents are “superprecedents,” like Roe and Casey are said to be by liberal senators.