June 5, 2018 6:00 AM HomeMorning ReadsMorning Reads for Tuesday, June 5, 2018 Morning Reads for Tuesday, June 5, 2018 By Theresa Garcia Robertson Morning Reads 51 Comments Gooooooood Morning! Teri is out of the office this Tuesday so today’s Morning Reads are brought to you from West Central Georgia. Today in Georgia History, Augusta came into possession of the Patriots. Happy American Birthday, Augusta. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the baker in the same-sex court case. Guatamala is dealing with a volcano eruption. Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson is being investigated by the Pentagon on claims of unprofessional behavior. An Atlanta investment analyst is the first fatality on the Chattahoochee River White Water course. The new hands free driving law goes into effect in just a few weeks. Here is what you can and cannot do. With no state wide questions on Republican ballots from the GOP, County Party leaders addressed their own special interests. Here’s a breakdown of various questions on ballots across Georgia. What’s next for Stacey Evans? Who doesn’t love a good podcast? Speaking of podcasts, my newest obsession is “From the Front Porch” produced by Annie B. Jones in Thomasville, Georgia. Check it out here. Share this:TwitterFacebookTumblrRedditEmailPrint Related About Author Theresa Garcia Robertson Wife. Geege. Foodie. Political Junkie. Southern Enthusiast. Taco Lover. 51 Comments Andrew C. Pope Early morning legal analysis: A lot of folks were confused yesterday at the use of the term “narrow” to describe a 7-2 SCOTUS decision. When lawyers use the term “narrow” we’re referring to the scope of the Court’s decision and its applicability outside the case at issue. Accordingly, the decision was “narrow” because the Court’s ruling only applied to the specific facts of the case in front of it and its precedent doesn’t extend to other so-called “religious liberty” cases. The confusion is understandable. A lot of the drive-by journalism on SCOTUS decisions often focuses on the breakdown of the Justices as opposed to the impact of the decisions and treating SCOTUS decisions like a sporting event between liberals and conservatives is an easier – I would say lazier – route for journalists to take. However, there are 5-4 decisions that enact sweeping precedent and there are even 9-0 decisions that can be deemed “narrowly tailored” to a specific case. Folks using the term “narrow” yesterday weren’t trying to undercut or undersell the impact of the Supreme Court’s decision, they were trying to accurately describe what it means going forward: a whole lot of nothing unless you happen to be the plaintiff in that case. That said, I want to give special recognition to Ted Cruz. The man has argued in front of SCOTUS on multiple occasions and clerked for the Supreme Court. He tweeted out yesterday that the decision was a “major victory for religious liberty” adding that “the fact the decision was 7-2 (not a narrow 5-4) underscores that govt should NEVER discriminate against religious faith.” Now, I understand he’s a politician and he’s got an agenda to push. But he’s too smart and too knowledgeable about the Supreme Court for this statement to be anything other than a knowing and willful lie. June 5, 2018 6:37 AM Log in to Reply Ellynn I learned about narrow rulings about ten years ago when drive across the state listening to NPR when a 5/4 narrow ruling came out, and Nina Totenberg explained it all. June 5, 2018 9:47 AM Log in to Reply atlindy Ted Cruz was one of those guys who was willing to shut down the government indefinitely, let the government default on the debt or do a bunch of other things that would have sent the country into a deep recession and caused lasting economic damage – so long as a Democrat was in the White House. Now that a Republican is in the White House, wrecking the economy today (and tomoorow) in order to save the country from social democracy down the line no longer sounds like such a good idea. Imagine that. It was a terrible strategy anyway if you are a small-government conservative. Because the biggest expansions of government such as the New Deal, Great Society, Obamacare etc. have actually occurred during times of economic crisis. Nixon implemented wage and price controls and went to China to open up trade in order to deal with stagflation and he was a Republican! So the best way to absolutely ensure that this country was going to adopt the Nordic model would have been to cause a double dip recession. As it is, the very reason why Republicans have been able to pass the tax bill, the banking reform bill etc. is because they DIDN’T blow up the Obama recovery, the economy is doing pretty good and folks feel secure and aren’t looking for a safety net. But I guess this isn’t a “learn from history” crowd I suppose. June 5, 2018 6:31 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Etiquette question: can you disinvite someone who wasn’t going to attend your party anyway? June 5, 2018 6:48 AM Log in to Reply Mr. Bear If it brings you pleasure, why not? A victimless crime unless you let the dis-invited party know. June 5, 2018 9:30 AM Log in to Reply The Eiger This is actually very helpful. I’ll admit I was one of those that was very confused on why this would be called a narrow ruling. Also, you know I’m not a Cruz fan and this is yet another reason to not like him. June 5, 2018 8:08 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope See, I have some value around here. June 5, 2018 8:48 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 He ain’t sorry… http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5803403/Bill-Clinton-insists-doesnt-owe-Monica-Lewinsky-apology-HES-victim-too.html June 5, 2018 8:10 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope This just in: Fox News criticizes Christians for praying publicly https://deadspin.com/fox-news-shows-eagles-players-praying-falsely-implies-1826564582 June 5, 2018 9:12 AM Log in to Reply bethebalance I think even the lemmings will realize that Trump moving the goalposts to the locker room is a political ploy. No one will care about “locker room” behavior… June 5, 2018 6:50 PM Log in to Reply bethebalance In the locker room, they can even grab each other by the footballs. PS- what happened to the Edit function? I dug that, June 5, 2018 6:52 PM Log in to Reply John Vestal Amy Howe provided some analysis on Masterpiece here at SCOTUSblog (as well as at her eponymous blog), which goes into detail regarding the scope and reasoning behind the ruling…and what it does and does not say about similar/future cases. (h/t SCOTUSblog.com) It should also be noted that, beginning with this Friday’s conference, SCOTUS will consider the petition filed on another similar case: Arlene’s Flowers, Inc v Washington. This is the case involving florist owner Baronelle Stutzman and the lower court rulings (including Washington Supreme Court) finding she violated Washington state’s Consumer Protection Act. the issues brought by the petition are: (1) Whether the creation and sale of custom floral arrangements to celebrate a wedding ceremony is artistic expression, and, if so, whether compelling their creation violates the free speech clause; and (2) whether the compelled creation and sale of custom floral arrangements to celebrate a wedding and attendance of that wedding against one’s religious beliefs violates the free exercise clause. If, in fact, the Court’s grant and ruling in Masterpiece was predicated not by the question of constitutionality of the Colorado statute and/or Jack Phillip’s actions in violation of the statute but by the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s failure to give him a fair hearing, then where does that leave *this* petition? Keep in mind that the October 2013 sitting of SCOTUS (which, it can be argued, is virtually the same Court with Gorsuch replacing the late Scalia), denied to grant review in the case of the New Mexico photographer who had been found to be in violation of that state’s public accommodations law by the NM Human Rights Commission, and both the NM CoA & Supreme Court. June 5, 2018 9:21 AM Log in to Reply alpha male A couple of takes from this non- attorney . If off base I imagine someone will correct the record. While certainly not the overarching religious liberty win some of us wanted, this seems to be at least somewhat more important than the left is claiming. Despite the 7-2 vote, this really came down to JusticeKennedy imo. Had he gone the other way, as he is want to do in most cases involving same sex issues, I feel certain the 2 lib justices would have joined him giving the same sex couple the win. That would have been damaging for future religious liberty cases it seems due to the stare decisis doctrine. That would have at least theoretically made it more difficult to overturn. Secondly, it seems most analysis is focused on Kennedy’s concern in this case with the overt anti- Christian bias of the Colorado commission as demonstrated in some of their inflammatory statements and using that as reason this case cannot be extrapolated. The left is taking solace in their assumption that future leftist bureaucrats could just hide their anti – Christian animus, possibly give lip service to religious liberty or deeply held beliefs, and then be inoculated when they rule against first amendment rights. And that appears to me to be a valid assumption as far as it goes. However, that ignores the latter portion of Kennedy’s decision. The part where Kagan and Breyer disagreed with him. That is where Kennedy states that the Colorado’s decision in other bakers cases, cases where the commission ruled FOR other bakeries when those bakeries refused to bake anti same sex messages, Also proved an anti- religious bias. It seems to me that portion of the decision would prove to be more of a hurdle for a state to clear, as opposed to the inflammatory speech. It seems that says all sides need to be treated equally. Not solely be talked about respectfully.Now that does not prove by any means that such a concern would carry the day with Kennedy .However, it has to be a concern that he even mentioned such a disparity. And finally, getting back to my first point, as Justice Thomas stated in his concurrence, “ religious liberty lives to fight another day”. And hopefully whenever that other day arrives, Kennedy will have retired and been replaced by another Federalist Society lawyer. Thus laying the groundwork for a clear victory for the First amendment next time around. June 5, 2018 2:23 PM Log in to Reply Raleigh Confusing, no. The court decision was very narrow. The fact that the majority severely admonished the Colorado Civil Rights Commission by writing they were hostile and failed to be impartial in its dealings with Phillips. This was less about selling a cake and more about how a government agency treated the baker. The court did say that the larger question would be decided later. My surprise was the 7-2 decision where I expected a 5-4 decision with the real possibility of a 4-5 decision with Kennedy siding with the liberal side of the court as he has done in the past. What’s the takeaway from this? Perhaps it is how a case is presented more than a score of 5-4 etc… As I have said in the past the only thing I would discriminate in this case would have been color. If their money was green I would have created and sold a cake to the couple. However, after hearing their interviews I must say if a cake is throwing such a cloud over their marriage maybe they should have considered not doing it. There will be much harder and tougher things they will face through life than getting a specific wedding cake. June 5, 2018 9:39 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Nevertheless, while those religious and philosophical objections are protected, it is a general rule that such objections do not allow business owners and other actors in the economy and in society to deny protected persons equal access to goods and services under a neutral and generally applicable public accommodations law. When it comes to weddings, it can be assumed that a member of the clergy who objects to gay marriage on moral and religious grounds could not be compelled to perform the ceremony without denial of his or her right to the free exercise of religion. This refusal would be well understood in our constitutional order as an exercise of religion, an exercise that gay persons could recognize and accept without serious diminishment to their own dignity and worth. Yet if that exception were not confined, then a long list of persons who provide goods and services for marriages and weddings might refuse to do so for gay persons, thus resulting in a community-wide stigma inconsistent with the history and dynamics of civil rights laws that ensure equal access to goods, services, and public accommodations.” That was from Kennedy’s opinion yesterday. My read is that Kennedy (and Kagan and Breyer) recognize that states can use anti-discrimination statutes – like Colorado’s CADA – to prohibit discrimination against LGBT customers but need to afford those facing administrative procedures a “neutral and respectful consideration” devoid of “impermissible hostility toward sincerely held religious beliefs.” Had the Commission offered a more neutral proceeding for the baker, it’s likely the decision would have gone 5-4 the other way. June 5, 2018 10:03 AM Log in to Reply John Vestal “Had the Commission offered a more neutral proceeding for the baker, it’s likely the decision would have gone 5-4 the other way.” If the case docs hadn’t shown the hostility/animus by Commission members during the hearing process, would the petition have even been granted? June 5, 2018 10:16 AM Log in to Reply Raleigh I don’t doubt your assessment Mr. Pope. I believe without the open hostility that CADA showed the outcome might have been very different. Are we going to need a member of the clergy who is also a baker or a florist before we get to the root of the matter? June 5, 2018 11:04 AM Log in to Reply John Vestal Sister Schubert on line 2… June 5, 2018 11:26 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse It’s last week’s news, but some things require a little time to fully comprehend. I love the irony that the new Rosanne show that was supposed to make Trumpers sympathetic characters – they’re not racist conspiracy theorists – failed because show star Roseanne Barr is a racist conspiracy theorist. https://www.thenation.com/article/roseanne-tried-to-use-roseanne-to-prove-that-trump-voters-arent-racist-there-was-just-one-problem/ Ed Burmila is almost always a good read. His Nation article discusses the point of why would ABC and others give a racist conspiracy theorist Trumper a platform to portray theirself otherwise. It’s not as if Roseanne hadn’t already earned that reputation. Roseanne’s series being canceled won’t hurt her much. She return to her high standard of living and continue promoting conspiracy theories and making racist comments. That’s not the case with the typical deplorable. Hence their vicarious attraction and support of those that doing so. Conspiracy theories and racism are a GOP feature, not a bug. They’re features that won’t be going away for money Republicans so long as they elect them to office or earn them money. June 5, 2018 10:05 AM Log in to Reply chamblee54 https://chamblee54.wordpress.com/2018/06/05/the-battle-of-fair-street-bottom/ Stocey Abrams appeared on Democracy Now. She discussed her role in the riots that took place in Atlanta, after the Rodney King verdict. June 5, 2018 10:10 AM Log in to Reply chamblee54 The lady’s name is Stacey Abrams. June 5, 2018 10:16 AM Log in to Reply Will Durant OK I know Georgia has no Civil Rights law to violate, what about the equivalent of Colorado’s Consumer Protection Act (do they also test for THC content on consumer’s behalf?). Is there any reason under the sun other than filling Ralph Reed’s pockets for a RFRA in Georgia? The Washington florist case could be more ticklish as I recall they have both state civil rights laws inclusive of sexual orientation and a RFRA. But how much did it inconvenience the customers? Are you telling me they couldn’t find a gay florist? June 5, 2018 10:14 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Well, it must be PC Heaven for the Libs. Miss America has no more swim suit and no more evening gowns! Good Lord!!!! I know I can’t wait to see Candi Crowley and Rosanne nervously holding hands to see who’ll wear the crown!! June 5, 2018 10:20 AM Log in to Reply Ellynn The new Chair of now all female Miss America Board is former Miss America and former Fox host Gretchen Carlson. Are you saying Gretchen is a liberal? June 5, 2018 11:22 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Ellynn… there are very few sanctioned opportunities for old dudes like Noway to lecherously ogle young women without drawing the ire of their wives. Can’t you see why he’s so upset about this? June 5, 2018 11:27 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 You just keep eating Cheetos and staring at your poster of Madeline Albright, Sniv!! June 5, 2018 2:02 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Yep! June 5, 2018 1:58 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 She’s a lib June 5, 2018 1:59 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn This will be news to even her. June 5, 2018 2:22 PM Benevolus The one thing that every tyrant, dictator, king, PR flack, ad exec, and Steve Jobs must know is that people, in general, are gullible and impressionable. You can convince many people of almost anything if you frame it properly. And once you have them hooked, it is damn near impossible to break the spell. June 5, 2018 4:01 PM atlindy @Ellyn: Does Gretchen Carlson have a personal identifiable ideology? Meaning is she politically active when not on the clock? Some of the Fox News talent are merely newsreaders. Not saying that this applies to Carlson, but I am curious. Even a lot of their talent that self-identifies as conservative, I don’t know. There is a difference between being bigoted and narrow-minded and being able to debate the differences between Wealth of Nations, Atlas Shrugged and Leviathan. A great many of the folks at Fox News fall in the former camp. June 5, 2018 6:20 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn To the best of my knowledge she has not shared a political affiliation directly. However; she has stated some personal beliefs and opinions which would lead an average person to know she is not a liberal. I’m not saying she is a conservative either. I know many conservatives who are not bigoted or narrowminded. Last I checked you don’t have to be a liberal or a conservative – I’m not either one. As to Gretchen, her book ‘Get Real’, has sections talking about her faith. She has a very well known stances on religious freedom, and an extreme dislike for the late Sen. Kennedy’s views on the Iraq War. She is on the Board of Trustees for the March of Dimes and involved in many groups that helps women to learn how to raise children with extreme birth defects. She had to put out a public tweet in January that she was not going to challenge an actual liberal, Sen. Murphy (D) in her current home of Conn., but was not ruling out a future run. The thing that confuses a few (not saying you are one atlindy) is she is also a feminist, which in the minds of some makes her a liberal. This does a disservice to the women I know who are conservative AND a feminist, including a few who are part of this site. June 5, 2018 8:29 PM Log in to Reply atlindy @Ellyn: Thank you for your comments. I will reply by saying that the people who are most likely – and most ardently – to claim that third wave feminism is inherently inccompatible with conservatism are the third wave feminists themselves. First wave feminism and neo-conservatism are fine. Indeed, neocons have co-opted first wave feminism as their own, as evidenced by several conservative organizations named after first wave feminists such as Susan B. Anthony. Second wave feminism and neo-conservatism are compatible enough if one takes an a la carte approach to both. But if third wave feminists state that their ideology and goals are inimicable to that of conservatism, it is rather inconsistent to chide conservatives when they disagree. June 6, 2018 9:01 AM bethebalance I wouldn’t compartmentalize feminism with such generalizations. There may be an academic reason for such generalizations, but such broad strokes will tend to paint individuals incorrectly and unfairly, and lead to bogus social and political boundaries. June 6, 2018 9:48 AM Ellynn I hate the term “Whatever” wave of Feminism. If we are talking about the history of being a feminist or women’s equality, that would be one thing – but applying it to views of current events is silly. It’s like saying, well we apply Reconstruction era gains in civil rights instead of pre-WWII era civil rights to our 2018 daily life. That’s sort of silly and also taking the past and out of the context. FYI, as ‘waves’ go, we are currently in the start of the Fourth wave. June 6, 2018 10:22 AM Will Durant So if the phone videos of Gwinnett cops elbow smashing and stomping a weed devotee last year were done illegally, will they be admissible in court? June 5, 2018 10:31 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Will, are saying that victims were filming cops beating the suspects and the cops are saying that was supposedly illegal to do so) June 5, 2018 10:42 AM Log in to Reply Will Durant Nah, I didn’t word that right. The article linked by Theresa discussing the new hands free law notes that any use short of a swipe while in the roadway whether stopped or not is now illegal and being illegally parked on the shoulder still does not allow phone use. While texting was previously considered illegal under these same circumstances, the two videos that got the cops fired were done by drivers with phones stopped at the light and in the roadway. One Gwinnett motorcycle cop issued something like 2,000 tickets a while back (Stefan linked it here or at PP) and his interpretation of the old law was more than 10 clicks constituted texting as that is the length of a phone number (apparently he never considered international, GPS use, conference calls…). Was videoing with a phone by the driver considered illegal before and if a driver sees a similar situation under the new law will they be violating the law in order to record someone else committing a more heinous crime? June 5, 2018 11:15 AM Log in to Reply Raleigh Well well, another example of the cost of things when it’s a free government program. With an annual income of less that 429,963 how long will it be before the Atlanta Streetcar will pay for itself? I wonder if they have figured in the cost of adding sleeper cars for the homeless now that they can start riding again. https://www.ajc.com/news/local-govt–politics/marta-will-make-atlanta-streetcar-free-beginning-july/7GdvT8U2KcmZAdlpp9O2kM/ June 5, 2018 11:13 AM Log in to Reply atlindy @Raleigh: While the streetcar will never be directly profitable – as most government functions will not be by definition – its indirect benefits were massive and transforming. It – along with the Beltline – not only attracted billions of dollars of new development into the city but it directed and concentrated a lot of that development into areas of the city that had been neglected by private enterprise for decades and were huge pockets of blight, poverty and crime. I could understand that a person who doesn’t live in the city would not care about that. I can also understand how a person who would have preferred a direct social welfare approach i.e. housing, health care, job training etc. provided directly to people living in those areas. But I cannot see why a person who supports economic development in the city would criticize the project. Especially in lieu of offering better ideas. And no, tax cuts, personal responsibility lectures and getting tough on crime aren’t “better ideas” for economically developing areas where factories closed, rail lines were idled, and the upper, middle and working classes abandoned decades prior. June 6, 2018 8:48 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope I don’t think Staplehouse (one of the best restaurants in America), Church (one of the best bars in America), and a whole bunch of other places would be there if not for streetcar-related development June 6, 2018 9:22 AM Log in to Reply Ellynn Bobby Kennedy died 50 years ago today. My mother told me he was the only democrat her own mother ever wanted to vote for as a president. John was too slick & Teddy too much of a follower grandma said. But Bobby wanted to met and get to know people was her view point at the time. She always told her 8 grandchildren as we were growing up “It’s harder to be mean to someone you know”. She and my other grandmother (who had a JFK photo hanging shire like in her house until she died in 2015) ended up going to a rosary for Bobby that night together at the church. To the best of my mother’s knowledge it’s the only time the pair ever agreed on anything political in the 18 years they knew each other before my GOP grandmother passed away. June 5, 2018 11:14 AM Log in to Reply Ellynn Why… Really, *** To pass a budget by 10/1 since the president has singled he will shutdown the government if he doesn’t have his wall. *** To get as many conservative judges okayed in case he looses the senate *** To prevent current sen dems from campaigning in their home states. https://www.axios.com/mitch-mcconnell-cancels-august-recess-1528219488-5e059e36-37ff-4f25-92b8-915cb78bf0eb.html?utm_source=sidebar fundedhttps://www.axios.com/mitch-mcconnell-cancels-august-recess-1528219488-5e059e36-37ff-4f25-92b8-915cb78bf0eb.html?utm_source=sidebar June 5, 2018 1:47 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn Hmmm… https://www.axios.com/white-house-press-aide-kelly-sadler-who-mocked-mccain-is-out-57b7b0dc-82bd-42f8-8aaf-258471bd3520.html June 5, 2018 8:37 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope She still hasn’t apologized to McCain, btw. June 6, 2018 6:14 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 She’ll apologize when Bill apologizes to Monica… and…Juanita…and Kathleen…and Paula…and Gennifer…and…. June 6, 2018 8:12 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope sigh I’m not sure how joking about someone’s terminal brain cancer is in anyway related to sexual assault. But I continually forget that you struck your head 6 months ago and are operating under the amnesiac delusion that Hillary Clinton is President. June 6, 2018 8:16 AM Log in to Reply Ellynn Noway, stop the whataboutism and deflecting to the “BUT BILL, BUT HAG’ defense. You want a actual Bill dicussion, go start a new thread on the topic over on todays reads. Bill’s actions don’t void Salters. She was callous. She will not apologize because Trump never apologizes. June 6, 2018 9:57 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Musta hit purdy close to the mark to get Little Sis all riled up… Listen I cain’t help if y’alls standard bearers are both still Ethically Challenged. For you, though, I’ll try and be a bit more sensitive today. June 6, 2018 10:02 AM Ellynn There you go generalizing and deflecting again. I’m made my dislike of the Clintons well know here in the last 2 years. See you over on todays comments. June 6, 2018 10:26 AM Andrew C. Pope I will say, the lone silver lining to Trump hiring cretins and goons like Sadler is that I get a tremendous amount of joy when they get canned for being – as expected – incredibly bad at their jobs. June 6, 2018 8:20 AM Log in to Reply Add a Comment Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.