Common Pleas Judge John T. McVay Jr. issued his opinion Friday, finding that the plaintiff in the case, the Italian Sons and Daughters of America, could not point to any case law supporting its position that it can limit the mayor or the mayor’s art advisory committee on what to do with city-owned monuments on city-owned land.
Paula Reed Ward, “Judge: Pittsburgh officials have right to remove Christopher Columbus statue in Schenley Park,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 3, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/judge-pittsburgh-officials-have-right-to-remove-christopher-columbus-statue-in-schenley-park/
Fig. 1. President Lyndon B. Johnson, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Clarence Mitchell during signing ceremony of the voting rights act. Yoichi Okamoto, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.
[Former U.S. Representative Ryan] Costello, who served in the House from 2015 to 2019, asked that the U.S. Supreme Court take up the case alongside a similar one out of North Carolina it agreed in June to hear to “rein in the state judiciaries’ unconstitutional meddling in congressional redistricting decisions.” . . .
Costello’s defense of the [Pennsylvania] legislature’s map relies on a contentious legal theory called the “independent state legislature doctrine” that is gaining traction in conservative legal circles and, if accepted, would vastly increase politicians’ control over how elections are conducted.
Four of the U.S. Supreme Court’s six conservative justices have previously expressed interest in having the court resolve whether state courts have authority to reject rules adopted by a state legislature for use in federal elections.
Nate Raymond, “U.S. Supreme Court rejects challenge to Pennsylvania electoral map,” Reuters, October 3, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/legal/us-supreme-court-rejects-challenge-pennsylvania-electoral-map-2022-10-03/
Fig. 1. “Rally Against Gun Control ‘Come and Take it’ flag at the Minnesota State Capitol,” photograph by Fibonacci Blue [pseud.], April 28, 2018, via Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.
The U.S. Supreme Court, which expanded gun rights in a major decision in June, on Monday declined to hear a challenge to a federal ban on devices called “bump stocks” that enable semi-automatic weapons to fire like a machine gun – a firearms control measure prompted by a 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting.
The justices turned away appeals by a Utah gun lobbyist named Clark Aposhian and firearms rights groups of lower court rulings upholding the ban as a reasonable interpretation of a federal law prohibiting machine gun possession.
Andrew Chung, “U.S. Supreme Court rejects challenge to ban on gun ‘bump stocks,’ Reuters, October 3, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/legal/us-supreme-court-rejects-challenge-ban-gun-bump-stocks-2022-10-03/
- Jade Campos, “Columbus statue in Schenley Park vandalized,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, June 12, 2020, https://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2020/06/12/christopher-columbus-statue-vandalized-pittsburgh-phipps-schenley-park/stories/202006120120↩
- Paula Reed Ward, “Judge: Pittsburgh officials have right to remove Christopher Columbus statue in Schenley Park,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 3, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/judge-pittsburgh-officials-have-right-to-remove-christopher-columbus-statue-in-schenley-park/↩
- Nate Raymond, “U.S. Supreme Court rejects challenge to Pennsylvania electoral map,” Reuters, October 3, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/legal/us-supreme-court-rejects-challenge-pennsylvania-electoral-map-2022-10-03/↩
- Andrew Chung, “U.S. Supreme Court rejects challenge to ban on gun ‘bump stocks,’ Reuters, October 3, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/legal/us-supreme-court-rejects-challenge-ban-gun-bump-stocks-2022-10-03/↩