News. Debate. Community. Levers for a better democracy.
RJ Sangosti/Getty Images

Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser argued by telephone before the Supreme Court in May that states should be able to force presidential electors to follow the wishes of voters.

Presidential electors must follow the wishes of the state's voters, court rules

The Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Monday that states may require presidential electors to cast their ballots for the candidate chosen by popular vote.

The decision, written by Justice Elena Kagan, appears to end the quixotic pursuit of a legal endorsement for "faithless electors" — Electoral College delegates who want to follow their own conscience instead of the voters' wishes.

By clearly rejecting the idea that electors can vote however they want, the ruling removes one strategy that opponents of President Trump attempted to use in 2016 and may have wanted to employ again if Trump were reelected this fall.

Keep reading... Show less
Balance of Power
Mario Tama/Getty Images

If he perceives President Trump as a threat to fundamental democratic institutions, does Chief Justice John Roberts use the Supreme Court's power to protect those institutions? Or does he defer?

Will it be Chief Justice Roberts who helps save democracy?

Goldstone is the author of "On Account of Race: The Supreme Court, White Supremacy and the Ravaging of African American Voting Rights" (Counterpoint Press). This piece was originally published by Independent Voter News.
Keep reading... Show less
Drew Angerer/Getty Photos

The Supreme Court declined to hear a case challenging Montana's donor disclosure law.

Montana's tough donor disclosure law survives at Supreme Court

Montana's disclosure requirements for campaign donors will remain among the gold standards for statewide campaign finance regulation now that the Supreme Court has decided to leave the law alone.

A federal appeals court last August upheld state requirements that groups paying for political advertising reveal their funders and spending. Without comment Monday, the Supreme Court said it would not reconsider that ruling.

The decision amounts to a symbolic but not insignificant win for advocates of more openness about political spending. Campaign finance reform groups hope Montana will provide a template for other states to adopt similarly tight disclosure requirements. And they assume the high court's ruling will form a precedent protecting future state laws against similar challenges.

Keep reading... Show less
© Issue One. All rights reserved.