The 2000 Presidential Election Controversy. Slides for 3/19/09. Analysis of Bush v. Gore Equal Protection Claim. Neither side is arguing that a recount per se violates the equal protection clause. The dispute in this case relates to the method being used.
Slides for 3/19/09
When there are no cases directly on point, courts attempt to apply general principles to the situation in question.
Candidate George Bush:
Voters who had unambiguously expressed their intent, but through no fault of their own, it had not been recorded in the machine count.
That leaves: Voters whose ballots were originally counted by machine and whose votes would be diluted if additional votes were added after a hand recount.
As we have seen from other cases we have read,
Washington v. Davis
Village of Arlington Ht. v. MHD
Personnel Adm. of Mass v. Feeney
in order to have an equal protection violation, the plaintiff must prove discriminatory intent as well as a discriminatory effect.
7 Justices (Rehnquist, Scalia, Thomas, O’Connor, Kennedy, Souter, and Breyer) concluded the intent of the voter standard violated the equal protection clause.
2 Justices (Stevens and Ginsburg) concluded the “intent of the voter” standard was sufficient when coupled with judicial review.
Four of the justices (Souter, Breyer, Stevens and Ginsburg): :
One of the most controversial and the most misunderstood topics in constitutional law is the relationship between church and state.
It is controversial because there is strong disagreement among many people as to what they think:
the founding fathers intended, as well as
What they think it should be like in today’s world.
It is misunderstood, because there is so much misinformation about our history and about different religions.
How do you define religion?
What separates one religious group from other religious groups?
Is atheism a form of religion?
a set of beliefs and practices (prayer, baptism, communion, animal sacrifice, etc.)
associated with recognition of one or more supernatural beings/powers
responsible for the creation of our world .
Religions differ as to:
the extent to which they believe a single god or multiple gods
the extent to which this supernatural power(s) controls what happens on earth and the extent to which it/they occasionally intervene through miracles, “acts of god,” etc.
beliefs about what happens to people after they die.
the extent to which what happens after death is a form of punishment or reward for what they did while they were alive on this earth.
ATHEIST is someone who openly rejects the existence of a supernatural being.
AGNOSTIC is someone who harbors serious doubts about the existence of a supernatural being, and generally rejects the idea that such a being intervenes in people’s daily lives.
SECULAR HUMANIST is someone who believes people can live ethical and fulfilling lives that lead to the greater good of humanity without having to believe in a supernatural being.