Brett Kavanaugh emailed his White House colleagues in June 2003 with an alert: The U.S. Supreme Court was about to release opinions on the University of Michigan's use of race as a factor to admit students. It was an issue of great interest to his boss, President George W. Bush — who favored race-neutral admissions — and one Kavanaugh had followed for years. Staff prepared a response anticipating the practice would be struck down, saying, "We must be ever mindful not to use means that create another wrong and thus perpetuate our divisions" in the pursuit of diversity. But the next day, justices released a 5-4 opinion written by Reagan appointee Sandra Day O'Connor that upheld the university's law school admissions policy, a disappointment that prompted then-Bush policy adviser Joel Kaplan to email Kavanaugh, then a White House attorney: "What's going on???" In a separate 6-3 opinion, the court said race could be a factor in undergraduate admissions, but not the deciding … [Read more...] about Inside Kavanaugh’s record on civil rights issues
Leadership conference on civil and human rights
opinion Vanita Gupta and Patrick McCarthy Opinion contributors Published 12:20 p.m. UTC Jun 27, 2018 Ten years is a long time to live with a mistake. In the span of 10 years, toddlers become teenagers. Businesses open and prosper, or struggle and close. Your community and our country will grow. Ten years would be an especially long time to live with a mistake of our own making, one that could overcrowd classrooms, shutter needed health clinics and clear the shelves of food pantries. We are on the verge of making such a mistake. It could cost almost every state billions of dollars in federal funding and harm millions of children. That mistake is undercounting young children in the Census. In 2010, the Census reflected a net undercount of about 1 million young children, and the conditions are in place for it to happen again. That is why we and other observers are sounding the alarm. Everyone needs an accurate Census, from parents caring for their kids to business owners and … [Read more...] about Count all kids in the 2020 Census. Getting it wrong will hurt children for 10 years.
The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly backed the First Step Act, which would allow more inmates to earn an early release from federal prisons and end practices such as shackling female prisoners during childbirth. The bill, House Resolution 5682, was approved on Tuesday evening by a vote of 360 in favor and 59 opposed. Co-sponsored by Representatives Doug Collins (R-Georgia) and Hakeem Jeffries (D-New York), the bill managed to unite President Donald Trump and some of his critics among the Democrats. Under the law, federal inmates would be able to earn up to 54 days per year in “good time credits” towards an early release, up from the previous cap of 47. This would apply retroactively, meaning that around 4,000 inmates could be released immediately once it is signed into law, according to Axios. The law also seeks to fund additional vocational and rehabilitative programs in federal prisons, to the tune of $50 million over five years, in order to help former … [Read more...] about ‘First step’: House passes prison reform bill uniting (some) Democrats and Trump
At first glance, they may seem like an unlikely pairing: a conservative congressman who represents the northeast corner of Georgia and a Democrat from the Congressional Black Caucus whose district includes Brooklyn and Queens. But together, Reps. Doug Collins, R-Ga., and Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., have guided Congress toward taking its first steps in overhauling criminal justice. The House is poised to pass the pair's First Step Act Tuesday with an overwhelmingly bipartisan majority and the backing of the White House. Here's what it would do: Put $50 million per year for five years into developing individualized programs to reduce recidivism and provide education, vocational training and mental health counseling to prisoners; Allow those prisoners to earn credits to end their sentences early and spend the final portion of their sentence in a halfway house or under home confinement; Mandate that prisoners be placed within 500 driving miles of their families; Help formerly … [Read more...] about House poised to act on prison reform
A Trump administration plan to ask people if they are U.S. citizens during the 2020 census has prompted a legal uproar from Democratic state attorneys general, who argue it could drive down participation and lead to an inaccurate count. Yet not a single Republican attorney general has sued – not even from states with large immigrant populations that stand to lose if a census undercount of immigrants affects the allotment of U.S. House seats and federal funding for states. In fact, many GOP attorneys general had urged Trump’s census team to add a citizenship question. “We always are better off having a more accurate count of citizens versus noncitizens. I see no downside in this,” said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, vice chairman of the Republican Attorneys General Association. The diverging views of top Republican and Democratic state attorneys highlight how even the most basic data collection decisions quickly can split along partisan lines amid the intense … [Read more...] about GOP attorneys general support citizenship question on census