The Constitutional Accountability Center, a judiciary advocacy group, which had filed an amicus brief in support of keeping Golden Week on the books, slammed Tuesday's decision. David Gans, the center's director of the Human Rights, Civil Rights, and Citizenship Program, wrote in a statement, "Today's 2-1 decision… rubber-stamps Ohio's decision to cut back on early voting and same-day registration, failing to ensure that the state respected the voting rights of all Ohioans. The court's decision will make it harder for racial minorities and others to cast a ballot this coming Election day."
CAC In the News
At a National Constitution Center discussion May 6, even Brianne Gorod of the liberal Constitutional Accountability Center praised Scalia for making originalism—adhering to the original meaning and words of the Constitution—the preeminent method of constitutional interpretation. "He really changed the way people think," Gorod said—though contrary to Scalia, she said her embrace of originalism leads to the conclusion that the Constitution is "fundamentally progressive."
Access to courts may not grab attention in the same way that issues such as guns, abortion, or affirmative action do, but it forms the foundation of the rule of law. How this law changes after Scalia will determine whether minorities victimized by the government, consumers threatened by corporate power, and others will have the right to go to court to redress violations of their rights. The vitality of the Constitution and federal law depends on ensuring that individuals have their day in court to vindicate their legal rights and prevent the abuse of power.
Brianne Gorod, general counsel of the Constitutional Accountability Center, said in a statement that the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder “flashed a green light to conservative elected officials across the country looking for ways to restrict access to the ballot box.” The Fourth Circuit, Gorod said, “unanimously and correctly flashed a red light to that approach today.”
“If the court doesn’t designate for rehearing, when there’s nine justices there will be new constraints placed on the executive, and an important national program blocked without the Supreme Court weighing in and declaring what the law is,” said Elizabeth Wydra, president of the liberal Constitutional Accountability Center.