Friday, August 23, 2019

Connecticut Law Is Weird When It Comes To SO

No it doesn’t mean significant other but rather sexual orientation. They didn’t know where to place the statute so they placed it on its own.

I came across this in the Connecticut Employment Law Blog on the statue,
One of the quirks of discrimination law in Connecticut concerns sexual orientation.  Back in 1991, the General Assembly passed a wide-ranging bill that added sexual orientation as one of the protected classes that employers could not base decisions on.

Sort of.

Rather than add sexual orientation to the key employment law statute that bars discrimination in employment, it created it’s own separate law.  While there may have been reasons for such a distinction nearly 30 years ago, it still a bit strange that we still do it this way. Notably, civil unions are still covered here even though same-sex marriages are now legal.
Okay, this brought to mind a conversation we had a couple of years back after the gender identity and expression law; we discussed moving it out of its own section and into discrimination law section.

Simple right just pass a bill that move this to that… WRONG!

There wasn’t any opposition to that but what threw a monkey wrench into it was amendments.

The Republicans wanted to load it up with exemptions, they basically want to expand the religious exemptions that now only includes religious organizations to include individual exemptions.

So that squashed that idea.

There is a lot of talk about changing the Constitution to do away with the Electoral College, some of the Democratic candidates have mentioned it.

What does it take to amend the Constitution? According to the National Archives...
The Constitution provides that an amendment may be proposed either by the Congress with a two-thirds majority vote in both the House of Representatives and the Senate or by a constitutional convention called for by two-thirds of the State legislatures.
So that means that 66 Senators and 287 Representatives have to vote for the amendment, when was the last time you saw anything pass with that majority in Congress?

States can also call for a Constitutional Convention but you will need 33 states to vote for the convention.

In the New York Times after the fall elections wrote that,
With the election results, the Republican Party will control both houses in 30 states, while Democrats will hold complete control in 18 states.
That means only 3 more states are needed to call a convention.

The National Archive also pointed out…
None of the 27 amendments to the Constitution have been proposed by constitutional convention. The Congress proposes an amendment in the form of a joint resolution. Since the President does not have a constitutional role in the amendment process, the joint resolution does not go to the White House for signature or approval.
What does all this mean to us?

First if a Constitutional Convention is called it will in all likelihood be controlled by the Republicans. Second, suppose it did pass and we have a Democratic President there is nothing that the president can do to block the amendments to the Constitution.

Okay suppose a convention is called to do away with the Electoral College, since the Republicans have the most states they will run the convention. First order of business… well we want to keep the Electoral College but we want to ban…

  • Abortions
  • Same-sex marriages
  • Being able to change your birth certificates
  • LGBTQ+ rights

And we want to expand…

  • Religious freedoms
  • The Second Amendment

And there would be nothing the Democrats could do to stop them from making those changes.

So think about how the Republicans killed moving SO and the next time you see on Facebook a meme calling for a Constitutional Convention that it will open a can-of-worms.

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