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Monday, September 15, 2003


The Ninth Circuit Strikes Again in the California Recall!!

The Federal Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (often referred to as the Ninth Circus by many conservatives), has once more ensconced itself in the annals of judicial insanity. They ruled today that the pending Calfornia recall election must delayed because punch card voting systems were determined to violate the Fair Voting Act. Furthermore, in what can only be described as a healthy dose of liberal pettiness, they relied heavily in their judgement in the famous Bush v. Gore Supreme Court case that mercifully ended the Florida 2000 fiasco.

In a masterpiece of equating apples and oranges, the court wrote:

Plaintiffs' claim presents almost precisely the same issue as the Court considered in Bush, that is, whether unequal methods of counting votes among counties constitutes a violation of the Equal Protection Clause. In Bush, the Supreme Court held that using different standards for counting votes in different counties across Florida violated the Equal Protection Clause. 531 U.S. at 104-07.
The Plaintiffs' theory is the same, that using error-prone voting equipment in some counties, but not in others will result in votes being counted differently among the counties. In short, they contend that a vote cast in Los Angeles or San Diego is entitled to the same weight as a vote cast in San Francisco.

Never mind that in Florida, the U.S. Supreme Court was dealing with an election where votes already cast were being recounted in only 6 of Florida's counties instead of all counties. Nor did the U.S. Supreme Court base it's findings on the statistical reliability of the particular voting system used. Their decision dealt with the recount being done by hand imposed by the Florida State Supreme Court:

The petition presents the following questions: whether the Florida Supreme Court established new standards for resolving Presidential election contests, thereby violating Art. II, ?1, cl. 2, of the United States Constitution and failing to comply with 3 U. S. C. ?5, and whether the use of standardless manual recounts violates the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses. With respect to the equal protection question, we find a violation of the Equal Protection Clause.

531 U.S. at 104 emphasis added

In other words, Bush v Gore says NOTHING about whether a particular voting system to be used in a pending election does or does not violate the Equal Protection Clause. The entire argument dealt with manual recounts, NOT the punch card voting system.

The only possible rationale behind the Ninth Circuit's decision can be little more than petty contempt over Florida 2000. The U.S. Supreme Court needs to step in and slap this court down for it's immature activist temper tantrum and let the will of the people of California go forward.

By the way, did anyone besides me notice the irony that this case was brought by the ACLU, and on the very day the decision was handed down both Gray Davis and Bill Clinton had a campaign stop in a church?

"Today's report confirms that, despite White House scare tactics, Social Security remains sound for decades to come.."

-? Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid (NV) upon hearing reports that the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds will go bankrupt even earlier than predicted.

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