Texas flim flam loses

A 5-3 decision ruled that HB-2 in Texas is an unconstitutional burden on the ability of women to access legal pre-viability abortions in Texas.

A lot more from lawyers later.

The quick consensus is that complete and utter bullshit claims that restricting abortion access through running providers through the ringer are under serious threat. The Ginsburg concurrence hints that TRAAP laws (Targeted Regulation Against Abortion Providers) should be assumed to be unconstitutional. The longer term policy and advocacy goal should be to have a standard in place that anything that treats abortion providers differently than providers of other services of roughly similar risk (mole removal for instance) is an unconstitutional burden.

191 replies
  1. 1
    Corner Stone says:

    Two things I will repeat from the other thread:
    I love Wendy Davis.
    And Scalia is still dead.

  2. 2
    Trentrunner says:

    5-3. So even if Fat Tony had been alive, it wouldn’t have mattered.

    Such good news.

    ETA: I’m glad Scalia is still dead. I’m also glad Andrew Breitbart is still dead.

  3. 3
    Helen says:

    Antonin Scalia; still dead.

  4. 4
    Paul in KY says:

    Great news for all women & men! Hoping for an even better Supreme Court come December!

    Fuck Greg Abbott & his gang of Texas Creepsters!

  5. 5
    Corner Stone says:


    So even if Fat Tony had been alive, it wouldn’t have mattered.

    I disagree. It will always matter that Scalia is still dead.

  6. 6
    catclub says:

    In the majority opinion, Justice Stephen Breyer writes that the restrictions “vastly increase the obstacles confronting women seeking abortions in Texas without providing any benefit to women’s health capable of withstanding any meaningful scrutiny.”

    Yes! Common sense and plain dealing are hated by certain parties.

  7. 7
    Woodrow/asim says:

    This is great news. Hopefully it’ll put a serious dent in these BS laws and the horrorshow they put upon women.

  8. 8
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    The arc of justice…

    ETA: To quote MLK more accurately, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”

  9. 9
    James K. Polk, Esq. says:

    Game, blouses.

  10. 10
    catclub says:

    A short-handed Supreme Court on Monday struck down a Texas law that tightens abortion clinic requirements in a way that critics say unduly restricts women’s access.

    From some article. Why do I suspect that the anti-aboprtion side will doubt its legitimacy because there were only 8 justices this time?

  11. 11
    Corner Stone says:

    The noise level at the Clinton/Warren rally is deafening. I’m not there but if the TV is a judge, then it is brutally loud.

  12. 12
    RobertDSC-iPhone 6 says:

    Very glad.

  13. 13
    maya says:

    That settles it then – Texexit!

  14. 14
    Hal says:

    Kind of nice to know that even if Scalia were alive this law would have still been shot down.

  15. 15
    eric says:

    @catclub: Well, the law got the majority of male votes, so that should count more, right?

  16. 16
    Cat48 says:

    Thank God it lost! Celebrate with Hillz/Lizbeth Rally who were welcomed like rock stars. On msnbc now

  17. 17
    randy khan says:

    I don’t know why people think the Ginsburg concurrence is “surprisingly” short. A concurrence is supposed to make a point that the majority didn’t make without undercutting the majority, which is exactly what it does.

    I haven’t read all the way through the Thomas dissent, but what I’ve read so far is hilarious- it’s all about “special rights” granted abortion providers. Yes, “special rights.” It’s beautiful.

  18. 18
    dmsilev says:

    So, amazingly, there are in fact restrictions on abortion clinics that Anthony Kennedy will regard as unreasonable.

  19. 19
    Mike in NC says:

    But now we have to wait for the Very Serious People around the Beltway to ask how Drumpf will react to this ruling.

  20. 20

    Keep the good news coming…

  21. 21
    Corner Stone says:

    Dammit, McDonnell gets off. Oh well, I’ll take the 5-3 overturning TX abortion clinic restrictions as some solace.

  22. 22
    Jack the Second says:

    @Trentrunner: Eh, I’m willing to believe the Justices play off each other enough that Scalia being dead could affect 2+ votes in some cases. Kennedy’s choice was a 5-3 decision or a 4-4 decision, as opposed to being the real decider in a 5-4 case, if nothing else.

  23. 23
    trollhattan says:

    The good news for Kennedy: if he gets short-sheeted now he’ll know it was Thomas. No more wedgies in the SCOTUS cafeteria either.

  24. 24
    catclub says:

    LGM comment to note:

    Cash & Cable says:
    June 27, 2016 at 10:37 am

    Great bit noticed by a SCOTUSblog reader: the Fifth Circuit said that a court couldn’t hold that HB2 was facially unconstitutional, because the plaintiffs only asked for as-applied relief. Breyer’s response was basically, “Oh yes you can – remember Citizens United?”

  25. 25
    msb says:

    at last, the good guys win a round.

  26. 26
    Aleta says:

    Here is decision: http://www.supremecourt.gov/op.....4_p8k0.pdf

    House Bill 2 (H. B. 2), … contains the two provisions challenged here. The “admitting- privileges requirement” provides that a “physician performing or in- ducing an abortion . . . must, on the date [of service], have active ad- mitting privileges at a hospital . . . located not further than 30 miles from the” abortion facility. The “surgical-center requirement” re- quires an “abortion facility” to meet the “minimum standards . . . for ambulatory surgical centers” under Texas law.

  27. 27
    gogol's wife says:

    Great news!

    Crush Trump!

  28. 28
    JBF says:

    @Corner Stone: He can still be retried if the government wants to pursue the case. The SC narrowed the definition of official acts a little bit and ruled the jury had been misinstructed.

  29. 29
    D58826 says:

    OT Elizabeth Warren is working the crowd in Ohio. Wish she would tell us how she really feels about ‘old little hands’ :-)

  30. 30
    Helen says:

    @Corner Stone: And Fox News’ Judge Napolitano haz a sad about that. You see, Hillary took money for the Clinton Foundation and then did favors for the donors as Sec of State. Now how can they indict her? DERP!

  31. 31
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Yahoo!! Between the surprising affirmative action decision and this pro-choice decision, SCOTUS has been knocking it out of the park recently. Now we need to solidify these gains by having a President who will nominate liberal/progressive-leaning Justices. Great way to start a new week.

  32. 32
    Corner Stone says:

    @D58826: I know. I was not really sure how she felt.

  33. 33
    gogol's wife says:


    I heart her so much!

  34. 34
    gogol's wife says:

    I know we need Warren in the Senate, but it would be so heartwarming to see two strong, kickass women running for President and VP.

  35. 35
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @catclub: **Shrugs**

    Rightwingers will always find a reason to devalue decisions that don’t go in their favor. I still hear some of them arguing against interracial marriages and the Civil Rights Act. They’re always on the wrong side of history and progress will continue to leave them behind.

  36. 36
    Corner Stone says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    Now we need to solidify these gains by having a President who will nominate liberal/progressive-leaning Justices.

    Agreed. After HRC wins, who will Bernie demand she nominate, I wonder?

  37. 37
    Jeffro says:

    Love the TX ruling, love Warren out campaigning hard for HRC, happy to see a Trump spokesperson telling the press Trump “doesn’t have to know anything” on a topic to make decisions, also have to concur on the Scalia and Breitbart sentiments noted upthread.

    It’s quite a Monday already here, isn’t it?

  38. 38
    gogol's wife says:

    Warren on Trump is priceless. All she has to do is summarize his utterances and it’s dynamite!

  39. 39
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Corner Stone: He did? Shocking. Another rich guy buys his freedom. Sigh.

  40. 40
    Percysowner says:


    5-3. So even if Fat Tony had been alive, it wouldn’t have mattered.

    Maybe. I heard an NPR report years ago on Casey, the case where the court upheld abortion rights, that Kennedy was ready to vote with Scalia et al. and strike them down. Sandra Day O’Connor kept at him until he caved kept the right to abortion. Who knows how he would have voted if fat Tony and been badgering him on this case.

  41. 41
    JPL says:

    So what to former disgraced Governor of Virginia, wife?

  42. 42
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Corner Stone: Cornel West comes to mind.

  43. 43
    raven says:

    @Jeffro: The McDonald ruling was dumped.

  44. 44
    Cat48 says:

    @gogol’s wife:

    They look good together & her speech was great.

  45. 45
    Shell says:

    I love Elizabeth Warren, but an all-female ticket makes me nervous. The entrenched misogyny in this country is gonna make it difficult enough for just Hillary.

  46. 46
    raven says:

    You people think Joe is bad try Herrman Cain! What a fucking moron.

  47. 47
    burnspbesq says:

    The tell, which Justice Ginsburg effectively illuminated at oral argument, was that Texas made no effort to keep women in the El Paso area from traveling less than an hour into New Mexico to obtain purportedly substandard care. Which made it impossible for the state to argue with a straight face that women’s health was the objective of the legislation.

  48. 48


    A short-handed Supreme Court on Monday struck down a Texas law that tightens abortion clinic requirements in a way that critics say unduly restricts women’s access.

    I hate that description of the event. It’s not just “critics” who say the law unduly restricts access to abortion; the Supreme Court agreed. By going with the usual “supporters say this, critics say that”, they’re treating the Court as just another party whose opinion is not worthy of any special weight.

  49. 49
    JPL says:

    Uh oh, Trump is gonna call Hillary shrill again. She is giving a great speech.
    @Shell: I agree.

  50. 50
    Chyron HR says:

    @Corner Stone:

    After HRC wins, who will Bernie demand she nominate, I wonder?

    Can Run The Jewels serve as co-justices?

  51. 51
    Kay Eye says:

    Abbott et al could slink into a dark cave in shame. But they have no shame.

  52. 52
    Brachiator says:

    If I could take a moment for a personal note. Over the weekend, a friend and co-worker died in a car crash. No one else was involved or hurt. He was a brilliant young man who was loved by everyone. He started at our company when he was 19 and it was almost like watching him grow up. He used to humor an old man like me. When I overheard him talking to a customer and giving an answer that was nuanced and comprehensive, I would ask where he learned that. He would reply, “from you, of course.” We would occasionally carpool and talk about everything from music to geek movies.

    Some of the staff who were among his closest friends spent the weekend with his family, after the circumstances of his death became known. He was only 27 years old.

  53. 53
    amk says:

    @catclub: well, it was ‘short handed’ because the rethugs wanted a short handed thug in place? Karma, bitchez.

  54. 54
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Warren intro was good, nice tag team. I was sceptical about her as a possible vp, but it’s growing on me. My favorite is still Tom Perez.

  55. 55

    @Shell: is it any worse than the entrenched racism. Remember, a majority of US voters have experienced the misandry directly while not a majority of voters have experienced direct and blatant (much less the ever constant subtle) racism.

  56. 56
    smith says:

    I have a dream that someday we will live in a world in which women don’t have to wake up each day and ask if their right to routine medical care is still mostly intact.

  57. 57
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @Brachiator: So, so very sorry. How painful for all of you. May you treasure his life even as you grieve.

  58. 58
    Josie says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Bite your tongue!

  59. 59
    Botsplainer, Neoliberal Corporatist Shill says:

    I has a confused. Siegelman went to prison, as did Blagojevich.


  60. 60
    Poopyman says:

    @Corner Stone: That sounds so wrong, yet I agree soooo much.

  61. 61

    Now we need to solidify these gains by having a President who will nominate liberal/progressive-leaning Justices.

    We HAVE that president. What we need are politicians that will do their damn jobs and confirm the nominee in front of them. Then Pres Hillary can continue the legacy with the next nominee.

    ETA: My harshness is at the politicians, not at your original comments, in case there is confusion there. :-)

  62. 62
    Cat48 says:

    My sympathies to you. That’s just so sad. So young.

  63. 63
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @TaMara (HFG):

    We HAVE that president. What we need are politicians that will do their damn jobs and confirm the nominee in front of them. Then Pres Hillary can continue the legacy with the next nominee.

    Amen, Sister!

  64. 64
    the Conster, la Citoyenne says:


    I agree, and as Liz is my Senator I like her right where she is anyway. My first choice is Tom Perez, but if the rumors are true and Tim Kaine is being considered, I’m completely fine with that – a nice safe white man with governing experience and a friendly demeanor is a good choice, too. I rather like the optics of a woman at the top of the ticket with a man following right behind.

  65. 65
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Shell: Unfortunately, I feel the same way. I’m a little nervous about an all-female ticket. I’ve had otherwise sensible Democratic women tell me that they are not happy with a woman running for President (although they’re going to suck it in and vote for Secretary Clinton anyways). Warren would make an awesome VP though so if she is the VP candidate, I would hope that our side would rally around our ticket.

  66. 66
    Emma says:

    @Brachiator: When the good and talented die young they leave a specially dark empty space behind. I’m so sorry!

  67. 67
    Immanentize says:

    @dmsilev: This to me is the most surprising aspect of the case. It seems that Justice Kennedy (in both this case and the Fisher case) has no more fucks to give. He seems tired of overt lawlessness and poorly reasoned and sustained arguments in favor of overturning the Supreme Court’s precedents. Took him long enough! What else might he decide on his way out?

  68. 68

    @Brachiator: I am so sorry. So awful for all those he clearly touched…

  69. 69
    rikyrah says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Two things I will repeat from the other thread:
    I love Wendy Davis.
    And Scalia is still dead.

    Both good things.

  70. 70
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Brachiator: ((Brachiator)). So sorry to hear of your loss.

    @TaMara (HFG): True. Wasn’t trying to imply that President Obama wasn’t nominating progressive/liberal Justices already.

  71. 71
    rikyrah says:


    You have my condolences. That is far too young.

  72. 72

    @Brachiator: What a tragedy. He sounds like a great guy.

  73. 73
    hovercraft says:

    Apparently the forced birthers badly over reached and have instead codified greater protections for clinics than existed before. The best pro-choice day since Casey. Going forward they will need evidence to show that new regulations will improve womens health, they can no longer simply claim it. Time to dream up a new line of attack.
    Scalia is still dead. And if he was alive he’d probably be sitting up on the bench reading his incoherent dissent aloud, good times.

  74. 74

    @Patricia Kayden: See my ETA – I reread it and thought, oh, it sounds like I’m being harsh at your comment – I wasn’t – just at the idiots who won’t hold confirmation hearings.

  75. 75
    aimai says:

    @Corner Stone: Yes, I think it matters tremendously that Scalia wasn’t there. Not having that poisonous toad dripping his venom into the discussion moves the entire thing to the center/left just by default.

  76. 76
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @raven: The 999 Pizza Philanderer is still talking? Why?

  77. 77
    Josie says:

    @hovercraft: Exactly – the law of unintended consequences. I love it.

  78. 78
    smith says:

    @Botsplainer, Neoliberal Corporatist Shill:

    I has a confused. Siegelman went to prison, as did Blagojevich.

    Two Ds vs one R.
    SCOTUS just upheld the time-honored legal principle of IOKIYAR.

  79. 79
    JPL says:

    @Brachiator: That is so sad and his family has to be devastated.

  80. 80
    aimai says:

    @Brachiator: I am so, so, sorry to hear that. Years ago I had to attend the funeral of a beautiful, 24 year old, daughter of a friend of mine, killed in a bicycling accident by a truck that turned and crushed her. I have never, ever, ever, forgotten the pain and agony of the 400 people who attended her funeral. And its been years. The death of someone young, promising, vital–at the very doorstep of their lives–is unbelievably painful and cruel. I am very sorry for your loss.

  81. 81
    Immanentize says:

    @Brachiator: That is heartbreaking. I am so sorry.

  82. 82
    Corner Stone says:

    @hovercraft: Team Tom Perez all the way!
    My neighborhood blew another transformer (not in the good way) so I am without power and could not see more than the first 5 or so minutes of HRC’s speech.
    Totes bummed. And soon to be boiling because it is hot af here.

  83. 83
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Understood.


    Trump “doesn’t have to know anything” on a topic to make decisions

    Does that make a lick of sense? Is that someone you would want in the White House making major lifechanging decisions which would impact 300+ million Americans and billions of people throughout the world? Yikes!

  84. 84
    aimai says:

    @hovercraft: We should sue the forced birthers on the grounds that open,free, easily available abortion is the best thing for women’s health.

  85. 85
    Poopyman says:

    @Brachiator: What a terrible thing to have happen. I’m sorry for your very personal loss of someone everyone assumed would be around so much longer.

  86. 86
    Felonius Monk says:

    @Brachiator: My condolences to you, his coworkers, and his family.

  87. 87
    amk says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Exactly. The dems should have been pushing that meme, repeatedly. Like the rethugs do.

  88. 88
    Immanentize says:

    @Kay Eye: But this whole experience, in Trump world, might increase Abbot’s chance of being picked as VP. White, hyper-right, anti-woman, filled with racial resentments, pro-gun, god-botherer — and with a disability to prove he can be un-PC!!!

    Perfect running mate.

  89. 89
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Cornell West, for diversity on the court, he will represent the people. Because Soyomayor is not a true representative of the people she’s too Ivy League. What’s that you say West is Ivy too ? Well then ………

  90. 90
    JPL says:

    @Botsplainer, Neoliberal Corporatist Shill: VA law didn’t prohibit the actions of the governor.

  91. 91
    Aleta says:

    @Brachiator: I’m sorry for your loss.

  92. 92
    gogol's wife says:


    I’m sorry. That is very sad.

  93. 93
    Immanentize says:

    @hovercraft: I suspect you are probably just mocking Bernie, but West is not a lawyer, although strictly speaking not constitutionally required. He really doesn’t have an unambiguous support system of folks who would really get behind such a nomination. It would be a huge waste of Hillary’s time and capital.

    Now what about Charles Ogletree?

  94. 94
    different-church-lady says:

    @Corner Stone: Yeah, but unless two birds land on the podium, I’m still writing in Bernie.

  95. 95
    aimai says:

    @Immanentize: Charles Ogletree would be interesting. There are a lot of great picks out there in Obama’s generation and upcoming. There’s no dearth of great people to sit on the court. If we can only take the Senate.

  96. 96

    @Immanentize: Whoever it is should be young.

  97. 97
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    How awful. I’m so sorry for his friends and family and colleagues/mentors. What a terrible loss.

  98. 98
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Brachiator: Oh, how sad. I am so sorry to hear it.

  99. 99
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Sorry about the transformer, it happened to us 2 weeks ago, power was out for five hours, not fun.

  100. 100
    Cat48 says:


    Charles Ogletree would be great, extraordinary! From Harvard, right? He’s very good on Tv, too.

  101. 101
    hovercraft says:

    Sorry for your loss, sad to hear of someone so young dying so tragically.

  102. 102
    scav says:

    Resonating echo to several topics today, “Oh? There are consequences to voting? Can we have a do-over?” and Those Pesky Wimminz: Muirfield golf club to hold second vote on female membership

  103. 103
    singfoom says:

    The crocodile tears from Texas’ AG are delicious right now. He’s still yammering on about SCOTUS not protecting the “health” of women. This should cut down on the number of women going over the border to Mexico for abortion drugs without the advice of a doctor.

    It’ll never end though, they’ll never give up so gotta keep fighting. At least this battle is won.

  104. 104
    Miss Bianca says:

    @James K. Polk, Esq.: Well-played!

    I have been a total crankypants here this morning but “Game, blouses” has stopped crankiness in its tracks. Celebrate this decision and the HRC/Warren Rock Star rally!

  105. 105
    hovercraft says:

    I like him he taught an entire generation of today’s legal minds and both Obama’s, I think that makes him too old (63), which was one of my main concerns about Garland.
    To the non lawyer point, many have argued that that is part of the diversity currently lacking on the supreme court. Over the last generation the focus on judges has resulted in too many New York Harvard and Yale alums.

  106. 106
    germy says:

    In a memo obtained by the Huffington Post, the RNC outlines a strategy to paint Clinton’s VP choice as an insult to Berne Sanders’s supporters, no matter whom she selects. In the memo, RNC research director Raj Shah writes that the goals of “Project Pander” are to “drive wedges between these top contenders and either Clinton and/or traditional Democrat constituencies, such as labor, environmentalists, and gun control advocates, and other traditional left-wing constituencies,” and “[w]here applicable, frame the choice as an insult to the large, deep base of Bernie Sanders supporters who are struggling with the notion of supporting Hillary Clinton as the presumptive Democrat nominee.”

  107. 107
    hovercraft says:

    Has anyone seen any analysis of how many if any of the closed clinics will be able to re-open ? It’s not easy just to open the doors, many have been closed for almost two years.

  108. 108
    Seanly says:

    F’king fantastic decision. This also highlights the importance of voting for Clinton and getting her to pick a good, young jurist in her first 100 days. I would prefer that Obama be allowed by our bigoted Senate to do his job, but I don’t think that’ll happen. If the Senate changes their mind on Nov 2, I hope Obama then says that the next jurist will be up to Hillary.

  109. 109
    Miss Bianca says:

    @germy: yeah , the sad thing is that there will be any number of useful idiots on the left willing to fall into that sort of trap. Oh, well….forewarned is forearmed…

  110. 110
    Hal says:

    So Bob McDonnell is never going to jail. Oh well.

  111. 111
    hedgehog the occasional commenter says:

    @Brachiator: So sorry to hear that.

  112. 112
    Paul in KY says:

    @Brachiator: Very sorry to hear of his death. Wish I had met this young man. Just a tragedy.

  113. 113
    rp says:

    @smith: Not really. McDonnell’s conviction was on pretty shaky ground b/c there was no evidence that there was any quid pro quo.

  114. 114
    Nancy says:

    @maya: you know this Texas crap has to stop – there are a lot of progressive voices in Texas and you know it – and there are assholes all over this country even in the bluest states

  115. 115
    TOP123 says:

    @Immanentize: and his personal disability was caused by an accident, after which he sued successfully for damages, and then as a politician pushed for ‘tort reform’. FTW!

    Perry is terrible (and has his own -ahem- do as I say not as I do issues), and I didn’t live here under Dubs, but Abbott -ugh- skin crawls.

  116. 116
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Brachiator: Condolences to you and all his friends and family. He sounds like a very special young man and it’s a great loss.

  117. 117
    Seanly says:


    My condolences on the lost of your mentee and friend. May I suggest that you share what you said here with the family?

  118. 118
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Brachiator: That is terrible news. May his friends and family find the courage and strength to bear such an awful loss.

  119. 119
    aimai says:

    @TOP123: I forgot Abbot was in a wheel chair. That puts him out as Trump’s VP–I am pretty sure Trump has a horror of people with disabilities, even if their awfulness in every other way makes them perfect for him.

  120. 120
    CaseyL says:

    @Brachiator: My god, that’s awful. He sounds like the kind of person we need more of, not fewer. I’m so sorry.

  121. 121
    hovercraft says:

    Much like Drump pointing out that Hillary and the democratic party have betrayed BS in all his speeches has really brought over hordes of Sanders supporters to him, I’m sure this will work like a charm. It’s time to give up people they have found the magic bullet that will give Drump the presidency. Just because the gop is full of rubes doesn’t mean our side is. This strategy will only work on the deadenders like Nina Turner, Susan Sarandon and the like. You know the people who have the luxury of cutting their noses off to spite their face.

  122. 122
    Paul in KY says:

    @germy: What if she chooses Bernie? Probably won’t, but that would mess up their little ratfuck.

  123. 123
    GregB says:

    Without that bloated and fulminating bully Scalia, I can only imagine these decisions are a little easier for Kennedy to get behind.

  124. 124
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @burnspbesq: we have a right to travel and a dormant commerce clause.

  125. 125
    nutella says:

    JPL said in an earlier thread: “Roberts and Alito seem to be upset that the majority thought this was about abortion and not overall women’s health issues.”

    God, Roberts and Alito are horrible people.

  126. 126
    Wapiti says:

    Being pedantic. “… running providers through the ringer …” – it should be wringer, from back in the olden days when there was a apparatus on top of the washing machine that allowed people to wring out the wet clothes and linens before hanging them up to dry.

    If computer spell-checking can’t learn these things, will we ever be able to trust the AI in our self-driving cars?

  127. 127
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Brachiator: It’s particularly heart-breaking when it’s someone so young who was so obviously a mensch. My heart goes out to you.

  128. 128
    aimai says:

    @Paul in KY: I think if Bernie had graciously conceded and shown any signs that he knew how to play a supportive role he could, even though he’s way too old, have been considered. But he has demonstrated that he’s a bomb throwing old crank who simply can’t share power, even power he doesn’t have, with other people. He is the exact opposite of a team player and just like he’s tried to turn “being second” into being co-nominee he would try to turn being VP into being shadow President. That is not what that job is for.
    HRC has to be looking for a younger, vibrant, but workable assistant to signal to the country that she is thinking about the entire generation that will replace her in eight years, but she also can’t choose someone who can’t step into the presidency if something goes wrong. That person isn’t going to be someone young enough to be utterly novel. And they can’t be so old that they won’t last the eight years.

  129. 129
    TOP123 says:

    @Nancy: Thank you! Seriously, it’s the second largest state in the country by population. The elections go red, but there are plenty of other voters. Several of the major urban areas in this country are here, and we have a significantly large number of people whose ancestors didn’t step off the boat from England in Roanoke, VA. It’s a very big and very diverse state. There are a vast number of Democratic voters here, and I’d love it if people would stfu with careless Texas hating snark.

  130. 130
    germy says:

    @Miss Bianca: @Paul in KY: @hovercraft: I don’t understand why every one of their “secret” memos gets uncovered by places like the HuffPost. Is the RNC stupid? I don’t see any benefit in them purposely leaking this stuff. One of the first rules of being a ratfcker is keeping the fcking a secret. Do they not get that?

    One everlasting meme I see over and over from the right is that they are the grownups; the competent ones. How does that myth persist?

  131. 131
    TOP123 says:

    @aimai: @aimai: or, as Der Trumpf would say, Sad!

  132. 132
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Paul in KY:

    What if she chooses Bernie? Probably won’t, but that would mess up their little ratfuck.

    By accepting, Bernie has revealed himself to be a sellout traitor to the Sanders movement, and it’s a betrayal of everything Bernie stands for that Hillary picked him!

  133. 133
    hovercraft says:

    @Miss Bianca:
    Granted this is only one poll but..

    In June 2008, 20 percent of Clinton backers said they’d go for John McCain. In July, it was 22 percent, then 18 percent in August and 19 percent in September. It finally dropped to 14 percent in October.
    But this time around, the voters who backed Bernie Sanders in the primaries are moving over to Hillary Clinton at a much more rapid pace.

    Last month, 20 percent of Sanders supporters said they would back Trump over Clinton in the general election. This month, that figure is down to 8 percent.

    The democratic race has only been officially over for two weeks and he still hasn’t actually conceded yet, Sanders supporters are still grieving most will come around. This will only work with a small bitter minority, and will be offset by the small contingent of true Never Trumpers.

  134. 134
    Corner Stone says:

    @hovercraft: It’s the fourth power loss in a little over a week, none due to bad weather.
    It just came back on for a split second, long enough for my printer to start chattering and the ceiling fan turning. Then another dull *boom* and…toast. Literally.

  135. 135
    rikyrah says:

    Warren should remain in the Senate.

    I’m rooting for Tom Perez.

    No to an all-female ticket.

  136. 136
    Immanentize says:

    @rikyrah: I too am a big Tom Perez fan. He was great when he was at Justice.

  137. 137
    Corner Stone says:

    @Paul in KY:

    What if she chooses Bernie? Probably won’t, but that would mess up their little ratfuck.


  138. 138
    SFAW says:

    All you Scalia haters are pretty shortsighted.

    If Fat Nino were still on this side of the grass, and were not able to bully Kennedy, then he would have stroked out from the final decision.

    Or, as Zero Mostel and Jack Gilford might say:

    “Nino is still alive!”
    “This will kill him.”

  139. 139
    randy khan says:


    Speaking as someone who lives in Virginia and who got saturation coverage of the trial, I don’t think you really can say there was no “quid pro quo” in the McDonnell case. In any event, if the syllabus of the decision is right, Court did not require a politician to say “I’ll do x if you give my y dollars,” but allows inferences based on behavior, as it should, since anyone with a brain knows better than to say exactly what the deal is out loud.

    I don’t know if the U.S. Attorney will have the stomach for it, but I think there’s actually a chance they could get a conviction during a retrial.

  140. 140
    burnspbesq says:


    IIRC, the District Court and Fifth Circuit decisions were stayed pending SCt action. Am I misremembering?

  141. 141
    Immanentize says:

    @burnspbesq: misremembering. The district court stayed the enforcement then the fifth allowed it to proceed.

  142. 142
    burnspbesq says:

    @Bobby Thomson:

    we have a right to travel and a dormant commerce clause.

    Has the Texas Legislature ever shown any sign of understanding or caring about either?

  143. 143
    laura says:

    @Brachiator: I’m sorry to hear of your loss. The lost promise of what at have been is the measure of loss.
    Blessings of grace and peace to you, your colleagues and this young man’s family.

  144. 144
    Emma says:

    @germy: I think they are trying to ratfvck Trump. Short of giving Hillary money, information of this kind is the most important to a campaign.

  145. 145
    satby says:

    @Brachiator: That’s heartbreaking Brachiator, I’m so sorry for your loss and the loss to his friends and family. Deepest condolences, much, much too young.

  146. 146
    hovercraft says:

    Yes there was a stay, but the clinics went from 42 down to 19 and if fully implemented it would have gone down to 10. Pete Williams just said that while there is now no reason for clinics not to reopen many of them never will. The cost of fighting this has accomplished part of the goal even as they lost.

  147. 147
    Terry chay says:

    @randy khan: yes. The ruling doesn’t say there was no Quid pro qui, it says certain things should not be considered “quo” (official acts). If he is retried under those acts it is possible he can get convicted again.

    It draws a pretty high barrier for what that is, granted, but it is a barrier that prevents either side from using it as a political weapon which is why I think they heard the case and handed this decision.

  148. 148
    Brachiator says:

    Just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone for your kind words. I was already taking today off to take care of some business matters, but now it is also a day of reflection.

  149. 149
    Shell says:

    The democratic race has only been officially over for two weeks and he still hasn’t actually conceded yet

    And…hes still actively fundraising for his ‘campaign’ and getting Secret Service protection on our dime.

  150. 150
    boatboy_srq says:

    @Corner Stone: Ditto. Scalia’s own vote? Non-issue. Scalia’s ability to bully other conservatist Supremes into voting with him? Significant. Dead Scalia matters for more than just his own opinion.

  151. 151
    SFAW says:


    Be well. So sorry to hear about this tragedy

  152. 152
    Shana says:

    @Corner Stone: I was disappointed about McDonnell too, but while I cheered the original conviction I always felt it was a little broad. Even if he eventually wins after a retrial he’ll always be considered scummy, so there’s that.

  153. 153
    Applejinx says:

    @Corner Stone: Let him demand. Nobody will care who demanded, history only records who appointed ;)

  154. 154
    Applejinx says:

    @Shell: I am a man, and to hell with that. Clinton/Warren! I actively want to vote for an all-female ticket. Besides, if it’s Warren, that is evidence my economics/wealth concerns didn’t need Bernie after all.

  155. 155
    Paul in KY says:

    @aimai: I stopped saying Hillary should choose him about a month ago, when it became apparent that his fee fees are more important than beating the Combover Caligula.

    Agree with just about all you’ve said here. Really sad, (not the Trump ‘sad’) that he could have done this so much better & that would have advanced his stated agenda (which appears now not to be his real agenda).

    Edit: On the age thing, we just needed him for the general Election. he could resign the day after.

  156. 156
    Paul in KY says:

    @Matt McIrvin: Well, there’s that….

    Spoken like a true Bernite!

  157. 157
    Corner Stone says:

    @Applejinx: “Nobody will care who demanded, history only records who disappointed”
    There. That should have you pre-covered for this election and the next four to eight years at least.

  158. 158
    Shana says:

    @aimai: The same thing happened to the daughter of a neighbor of mine when I was a child. As I recall she was about 8 when she died. I saw the family a few years ago when I was back at the homestead after my father’s death and it leaves a hole that never heals. So sad.

  159. 159
    Applejinx says:

    @smith: _I_ have a dream that a year will come when we can run people for President and Veep and fight only about the content of their platform and the nature of their job history, and it doesn’t matter the slightest bit whether they’re white or black or male or female.

    Oh, right, that IS 2016. It’s happening.

  160. 160
    Paul in KY says:

    @randy khan: The quid pro quo was that he would continue to get that sweet access & interest in his BS company if the presents kept a comin.

  161. 161
    Applejinx says:

    @Corner Stone: You are assuming Hillary will disappoint. I think she stands to gain too much, from not disappointing. This really is the time, for a myriad of reasons, to go for broke and radically sweep away all the crap. (and fine, if you insist on calling Bernie part of the crap I won’t gripe too hard. Still gonna vote for him though. For Senator, and not for any other putative job)

  162. 162
    Applejinx says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Hillary can do better. Obama’s nominated one person who’s a good person, but Hillary can do better.

  163. 163
    Applejinx says:

    @Immanentize: I think it upsets all the Justices that the gap in their ranks isn’t being filled for political reasons.

    If you think about it, that affects them super-directly, impedes their ability to pursue their existential purpose, and even implies that their fundamental reason for existence is a lie. Citizens United aside, their purpose is to be a distinct branch of government not beholden to partisan politics. This refusal to appoint a Justice implies that there’s no such thing as an unbiased judge, therefore everything depends on what party appoints a judge. That’s… pretty insulting, if you’re a judge. And they are the uber-judges.

  164. 164
    jonas says:

    @Mike in NC:

    But now we have to wait for the Very Serious People around the Beltway to ask how Drumpf will react to this ruling.

    It should be a beaut. His own campaign manager told Chuck Todd yesterday that Trump “doesn’t need to know what’s going on to make decisions.”

  165. 165
    gex says:

    @Richard Mayhew: Well 1) Shell made no claims that it was worse than entrenched racism and 2) Obama wasn’t running with a black VP nominee.

  166. 166
    J R in WV says:


    I’m sorry for your loss. It is obviously hard for you to lose someone who was following in your footsteps at such a young age.

  167. 167
    catclub says:


    will we ever be able to trust the AI in our self-driving cars?

    Paul Waldman had a seven minute podcast on trusting just those self-driving cars. If the standard is perfection, then no self-driving car will ever be allowed, but if the standard is: “Much better than humans do it”, then bring on the self driving cars ASAP. People are not perfect drivers.

  168. 168
    J R in WV says:


    Pretty sure it was a federal court, federal laws, etc. Almost nothing is illegal for a republican politician in Virginia…

  169. 169
    Elmo says:

    Did anybody read Thomas’ dissent? He spent a whole section bemoaning the entirety of the Court’s post-Lochner rights jurisprudence. He longs to return to the pre-1932 “right to contract.”

    Why on Earth does he still want to be on the bench, since literally nobody agrees with him on what the Constitution says?

  170. 170
    Corner Stone says:

    @Applejinx: I am not assuming, I am guaranteed she will disappoint. She will disappoint me at least three times before the rooster crows on her inauguration night.
    The difference being that I can argue against a policy decision and not impugn the person making it.

  171. 171
    jonas says:


    The SC narrowed the definition of official acts a little bit and ruled the jury had been misinstructed.

    IANAL, but I could read the brief and it seems to me that the court basically said that a corruption in the context of an “official act” has to be something like actually promising to influence a piece of legislation in return for money, or remove someone from an inconvenient investigation, or disband a regulatory panel for a favored business, etc. It can’t just be casual influence peddling — like the governor calling up someone at an agency and telling them you “really should meet” with this guy to discuss his pet issue. It seems to me that w/o amending the language of the Hobbs Act (the piece of anti-corruption legislation the court ruled on), it leaves loopholes all over big enough to drive a Rolex delivery van through. As long as you’re not literally caught on tape promising to vote a certain way in return for a bribe, you can pretty much engage in all manner of low-level, under the radar corruption.

  172. 172
    raven says:

    WASHINGTON — The Democrats on the House Select Committee on Benghazi issued their minority report today, absolving then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton of blame in the 2012 terror attacks in which four Americans were killed.

    The Democrat-only report, issued after more than two years of a Republican-led investigation that took place mostly in secret, concludes that the U.S. military was not ordered to delay its response on the night of the attacks that began on Sept. 11, 2012.

  173. 173
    ThresherK says:

    @maya: Texcession.

    None of this “they get an orderly vote” crap like in the UK. If Texans want to leave, the trick of trying to break up with us at a fancy restaurant isn’t gonna work. They’ll get a fugging scene.

    Oh, and we can start by removing all of America’s military out of that place.

  174. 174
    Corner Stone says:


    Oh, and we can start by removing all of America’s military out of that place.

    Take all your bullshit and go. Now try negotiating for refinery services with LA.

  175. 175
    tommo says:

    What took so long? I said years ago, why don’t they all just pass laws that each clinic must be in a 1,000 story building? That would have been just as dishonest.

  176. 176
    ThresherK says:

    @Corner Stone: I dunno, I can see a Country of Texas letting oil co’s build refineries on the (sic) cheap, maybe give some state aid to them for the privilege.

    The particular numbers I don’t have, so I can be corrected as needed, but can one imagine what Texas would be like if its highest authority was its own EPA? The West, TX fertilizer plant explosion could be repeated. Often.

  177. 177
    Emerald says:

    @Brachiator: You will never forget him. Thirty years ago I lost my next-door neighbor in a car crash. Also 27 years old. Probably the best human being I ever knew. Kind and generous young woman just about to be married. I look back on that and still think about what the world lost when we lost her.

  178. 178
    jonas says:

    @tommo: why don’t they all just pass laws that each clinic must be in a 1,000 story building?

    Here you go.

  179. 179
    dogwood says:

    “Obama’s nominated one person who’s a good person. . .”
    What the hell is that supposed to mean?

  180. 180
    Paul in KY says:

    @tommo: But not subtle, dontchaknow.

  181. 181
    Paul in KY says:

    @Emerald: I lost my 1st cousin in a bike/auto encounter & that was 30 years ago. Still miss him.

  182. 182
    ruckus says:

    This is entirely too young. I attended a friend’s service who was 21. Both of these men were way too young, but that’s the way the world seems to work. Some days it’s shit some days it’s not.

  183. 183
    TriassicSands says:

    This decision makes it clear that three Supreme Court justices are unfit to sit on not only the Supreme Court, but any court at any level. The dishonesty inherent in their decision is appalling. Either they are slaves to the doctrine of their church or they are simply pawns in a radical right wing agenda. Or both. In any event, they should be removed from the bench.

    The Emperor and three Supreme Court justices are utterly naked!

  184. 184
    WaterGirl says:

    @Brachiator: I raised a young pup at work – I hired him at 19 and he was 27 when I left. A loss like this would have been devastating. I’m so sorry for your loss; a loss to the world, it sounds like.

  185. 185
    TriassicSands says:


    We can hope so, but it is unlikely to slow the religious right down at all. They have shown that with the aid of the Modern Republican Party they will never stop trying to oppress women.

    In this case, it remains to be seen how many of the clinics that closed will reopen. We can hope all of them, but if even one remains closed it’s still a despicable win for the radical right.

  186. 186
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @ThresherK: to say nothing of the thirteenth amendment. Which is to say the new Texas constitution would say nothing of it.

  187. 187
    The Lodger says:

    @Brachiator: It sounds like a loss to everyone who know this young man. I’m deeply sorry to hear it.

  188. 188
    TriassicSands says:


    The loss of someone so young is tragic. Your memories of him will keep him alive for years to come.

  189. 189
    ruemara says:

    @dogwood: forget it, Jake. It’s Applejinx.

  190. 190
    Betsy says:

    @TOP123: Roanoke, Virginia, is in the mountains. No one stepped off the boat from England there.

    Maybe you’re thinking of Jamestown, Virginia, or Roanoke Island, North Carolina.

    But THANK YOU for not choosing Plymouth Rock, Mass., which as a “first settlement” post-dated both Virginia and North Carolina by some years.

  191. 191
    Stan says:

    @Shell: Don’t you think Trump will already get the sexist vote? Might as well double down on the gender card IMO

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