Moore v. Harper [07-Dec-2022]
"Imagine, if you will ..." - Rod Serling
In the popular game "Imagine If...", players are asked to consider what they would do in a hypothetical situation. For instance, "what would you do if you had unlimited power to affect change?" Answers to these questions would reflect the player's personal ethics and, perhaps, any personal limitations. But what no one playing the game seems to consider are the possible consequences of their hypothetical actions.
"You know how that rabbit feels going under your spinning wheels. Bright images flashing by like windshields towards a fly."
Today, December 7, 2022, may become another "... date that will live in infamy" as the U.S. Supreme Court begins hearing oral arguments on Moore v. Harper, a North Carolina case in which Republicans are pushing to invalidate a state court's redistricting decision based on what is known as the "independent state legislature theory" (ISL), a dubious interpretation of the U.S. Constitution that would effectively remove the ability of state courts to check election-related laws made by state legislatures.
After the 2020 Census, Texas, like many other states, was required to redraw the federal and state legislative districts to equalize the nominal count of residents in each legislative district. In North Carolina (and in Texas), this was done by a mostly Republican panel who gerrymandered the new districts to heavily favor Republican legislative candidates. In North Carolina, that map was condemned by their state court who ordered the map to be redrawn, but the Republican Party has asked that the SCOTUS hear their case in an effort to retain their new district boundaries.
So, what does that mean? In simpler language, the idea of "checks and balances" that are so candidly enshrined in both the federal and state governments would now be removed, and the state legislatures would be able to do anything that they wanted without any other entity to counter their actions. Unlimited power without anyone or anything to stop them.
"We can go from rockets' red glare to "Brother, can you spare..." another war, another wasteland, and another lost generation."
I must imagine that the Texas GOP is salivating more than Pavlov's dogs at the possibilities should the SCOTUS decide in favor of the North Carolina GOP and the independent state legislature theory. If this SCOTUS case finds in favor of North Carolina's Republican Party and upholds the independent state legislature theory, I suspect that we will quickly hear other state legislatures, including Texas', introducing and passing virtually any law - especially ones that favor Republican ideology over that of anyone else - without significant repercussions.
Yes, I will be keeping an eye on this one.