Diary

BREAKING: SC overturns Sotomayor in Ricci decision

It was 5-4, with an extra knife in her back with moderate Kennedy writing the opinion. The vote was 5-4 with the other 8 falling along the normal lines. The last section of the syllabus states:

Fear of litigation alone cannot justify the City’s reliance on race to the detriment of individuals who passed the examinations and qualified for promotions. Discarding the test results was impermissible under Title VII, and summary judgment is appropriate for petitioners on their disparate-treatment claim. If, after it certifies the test results, the City faces a disparate-impact suit, then in light of today’s holding the City can avoid disparate-impact liability based on the strong basis in evidence that, had it not certified the results, it would have been subject to disparate-treatment liability.

In the prior sections, they piece by piece chopped down the city’s arguments.

Correction: Originally I said the above was from the opinion, but it was from the syllabus. Here’s a quote from the opinion.

We conclude that race-based action like the City’s in this case is impermissible under Title VII unless the employer can demonstrate a strong basis in evidence that, had it not taken the action, it would have been liable under the disparate-impact statute. The respondents, we further determine, cannot meet that threshold standard. As a result, the City’s action in discarding the tests was a violation of Title VII. In light of our ruling under the statutes, we need not reach the question whether respondents’ actions may have violated the Equal Protection Clause.