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Sat Jan 13, 2018, 10:11 PM

Feel-good news: How Justice Sotomayor schooled Trump's solicitor general

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2018/1/11/1731940/-Feel-good-news-How-Justice-Sotomayor-schooled-Trump-s-Solicitor-General

Feel-good news: How Justice Sotomayor schooled Trump's solicitor general
By Rebecca Pilar Buckwalter Poza
Thursday Jan 11, 2018 ∑ 4:52 PM EST


It turns out that President Trumpís judicial nominees arenít the only ones who canít answer basic legal questions. Solicitor General Noel Francisco had a rough day at the Supreme Court on Wednesday after he couldnít tell Justice Sonia Sotomayor why his office had changed positions on the issue under review.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor confronted U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco as to why his office broke with solicitors general of both political parties for 24 years who said using failure-to-vote as a trigger to purge voters from state rolls violated the National Voter Registration Act.


Pretty basic, right? Unfortunately, Francisco wasnít ready.

General, could you tell me, there's a 24-year history of solicitor generals of both political parties under both -- presidents of both political parties who have taken a position contrary to yours. Before the amendment and after the amendment.

In fact, the Federal Election Commission, when it wrote to Congress with respect to the Help America Vote Act, took the position the old solicitor generals were taking. Everybody but you today come in and say the Act before the clarification said something different.

Seems quite unusual that your office would change its position so dramatically.


Francisco fumbled; Sotomayor kept going, every sentence making clearer how glaringly, obviously important this question surrounding the position reversal is in this case.

GENERAL FRANCISCO: Your Honor, what I'm saying is I think that the Help America Vote Act and the clarification amendment made it even clearer and after that clarification amendmentó

JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR: Well, so please explain the change of position.

GENERAL FRANCISCO: Sure.

JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR: After that many Presidents, that many solicitor generals, this many years -- the vast majority of states, over 35, over 40, actually, who read it the way your opponents read it, most people read it that way -- how did the solicitor general change its mind? Do you believe this doesn't have an impact, a negative impact on certain groups in this society?


It was a surprising oversight from an experienced litigator. Maybe Trump just has that effect on lawyers?

7 replies, 1849 views

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Reply Feel-good news: How Justice Sotomayor schooled Trump's solicitor general (Original post)
babylonsister Jan 13 OP
elleng Jan 13 #1
former9thward Jan 13 #2
sl8 Jan 14 #5
NBachers Jan 13 #3
MLAA Jan 14 #4
burrowowl Jan 14 #6
progree Jan 14 #7

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 13, 2018, 10:19 PM

1. THANKS, b'sis.

Let's HOPE the majority of the Court recognized this.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 13, 2018, 10:56 PM

2. Why was Francisco's responses not given?

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Response to former9thward (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 14, 2018, 12:16 AM

5. Oral argument, Husted v. A. Philip Randolph Institute

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 13, 2018, 11:58 PM

3. Nice to read this - Thanks for posting it, babylonsister.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Jan 14, 2018, 12:07 AM

4. Impotus would tell him to yell Fake Question

That is if Impotus had any effing idea what was going in government and current affairs. 😬

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Jan 14, 2018, 12:20 AM

6. Good on Sotomayor!

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Jan 14, 2018, 12:58 AM

7. Interesting. Minnesota has for decades: if you haven't voted for 4 years, you have to re-register

201.171 POSTING VOTING HISTORY; FAILURE TO VOTE; REGISTRATION REMOVED. Within six weeks after every election, the county auditor shall post the voting history for every person who voted in the election. After the close of the calendar year, the secretary of state shall determine if any registrants have not voted during the preceding four years. The secretary of state shall perform list maintenance by changing the status of those registrants to "inactive" in the statewide registration system. The list maintenance performed must be conducted in a manner that ensures that the name of each registered voter appears in the official list of eligible voters in the statewide registration system. A voter must not be removed from the official list of eligible voters unless the voter is not eligible or is not registered to vote. List maintenance must include procedures for eliminating duplicate names from the official list of eligible voters.

The secretary of state shall also prepare a report to the county auditor containing the names of all registrants whose status was changed to "inactive."

Registrants whose status was changed to "inactive" must register in the manner specified in section 201.054
before voting in any primary, special primary, general, school district, or special election, as required by section 201.018.


More: http://www.sos.state.mn.us/media/2304/minnesota-election-laws-statutes-and-rules.pdf

Nothing surprising at 201.054 on registration rules. 201.061 covers same-day registration. I don't see anything about a streamlined registration process for people who are already registered but "inactive". But it might be there somewhere.

Maybe it is thought not to matter since one can same-day register at the polls, though one has to bring some proof of residence or have someone vouch for you. But some might reasonably say that even this could disenfranchise someone who showed up in the last few minutes or otherwise couldn't get home or back with the required proof in time, and didn't know beforehand that they need to register/re-register simply because they hadn't voted for 4 years. ON EDIT: I suppose he/she could vote provisionally and then bring the required proof the next days....

Minnesota is known for its very high election turnout (like being highest in the nation) and we don't have voter ID or any of that crap... so its odd about the "must have voted within the past 4 years or must register again" rule.

ON EDIT - I started a thread in the Minnesota group on this --
"What happens if you haven't voted for 4 years?"
https://www.democraticunderground.com/10596248

so that's probably the place to check if you are curious about this.

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