New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - March 31, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
New Braunfets Herald-Zeitung Sunday March 31, 1985
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THE WHITE HOUSE
Supreme Court jumps into political thicket
Dave Kroner, General Manager Hobart Johatoa, EditorWashington TodaySupreme Court tangles with politics
By DONALD M ROTHBERG
AP Political Writer
WASHINGTON — By agreeing to decide whether Republicans and Democrats have a constitutional right to protection from each other, the Supreme Court is taking a potentially controversial plunge into what advocates of judicial restraint call the “political thicket.”
“Judicial activism run rampant,” was political scientist Norman Ornstein’s reaction to the court’s announcement that it would decide whether the Indiana Democratic Party had been unconstitutionally discriminated against by the
Republican majority in the state legislature.
But while the case involves a traditional exercise of raw political power, it also has California Democrats allied with Indiana Republicans and the Republican National Committee quietly hoping that the court sides with the Indiana Democrats It also would be ironic if this court, dominated by appointees of presidents who advocated judicial restraint Richard M Nixon, Gerald R. Ford and Ronald Reagan — took the activist role of broadening federal judicial involvement in drawing legislative district lines.
Call it gerrymandering or political
tradition, the case involves the practice of setting legislative district lines to benefit the party that’s doing the drawing. Following the 1980 Census, lines were redrawn in every state. In Indiana, the Republicans controlled the process; in California, it was the Democrats.
Indiana Republicans locked out the Democrats and drew district lines intended to give maximum advantage to GOP candidates in the 1982 elections.
The Indiana Democrats sued and the GOP plan was declared unconstitutional by a three-judge federal court panel.
The Republicans appealed to the Supreme Court and, as if to underline the peculiarly
political nature of the process. California Democrats filed a brief in support of the Indiana Republicans.
The reason for the alliance was simple what the Republicans had done to Democrats in Indiana, the Democrats had done to Republicans in California. Since the Democrats controlled the reapportionment process rn far more states than did the Republicans, the GGP stands to gain nationally if its Indiana party loses the pending case.
While agreeing to hear arguments in the case, the court still nught ultimately rule that so long as the districts drawn by the Indiana Republicans were roughly equal in
population and did not discriminate on the basis of race or creed, they can stand.
There would have been little doubt how the court would have ruled before it shattered precedent 23 years ago with its one-man, one-vote ruling establishing that the districts within any legislative body ought to be equal in population.
For a century before that ruling, the court considered legislative apportionment a political matter outside the reach of the judiciary
EDITOR S NOTE - Donald M Rothberg is the chief political writer of The Associated
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Rap. Edmund Kuempal Texas House of Representatives P O Box 2910 Austin. Texas 78769
Gov. Mark White Governor's Office Room 200 State Capitol Austin, Texas 78701
Rep. Tom Loeffler U.S. House of Representatives 1212 Longworth House Office Bldg Washington. D.C. 20515
Rep. Mac Sweeney (Guadalupe County) U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C., 20516
Sen. John Traeger Texas Senate Capitol Station Austin, Texas, 78711
Sen. Lloyd Bentsen United States Senate Room 240 Russell Bldg
Washington, D.C. 20510
Sen. Phil Gramm United States Senate Washington D.C., 20610
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10 years ago
With expressed misgivings abated only after lengthy discussions with Assistant District Attorney Bill Sehroeder, Police Chief Burney Boeck and City Manager EA. Delashmutt, City Council Monday night voted unanimously to support a major crimes task force law en-forcemnt concept that will consolidate the resources of city and county agencies with the assistance of the Alamo Area Council (rf Governments
The mood Tuesday of the entire board of Comal ISG dunng a special called meeting was one of relief that the strongly suspected arson at Canyon Middle School was not any worse than it was Fire walls helped limit the damage in the four-alarm fire, which forced city firefighters to use every piece of equipment it has. The art room, photography lab and a math office were destroyed, but
school will be able to reopen when students return from spring break
• They can put just about anything as far as a name goes, as long as they put the zipcode, which is the important thing,” said Manuel Silva, assistant district manager of customer service*. San Antonio Post Office, said yesterday. The statement came in answer to a change by the postal service in the name of the Startzville Rural Branch to the Canyon Lake Branch
Common Street will apparently be extended to connect with Lamp 337,
but only after an extended vocal disagreement at Monday night’s City Council meeting. By a 4-2 vote, the council elected to expend no more than $14,500 to assist Raymond Barse and Associates with the paving of the Common Street extension.
25 years ago
A hearing has been granted local insurance agents by the New Braunfels ISd at 5:30p m. Monday at the City Hall Council Chambers, upon their request, in regard to the schools’ placing all school insurance coverage with the Nowotny Insurance Agency.
A decision by the Third Court of Civil Appeals Wednesday that the suit of San Antonio for 100,000 acre-feet of water from Canyon Reservoir must be decided at district court level does not convey any sort of right to San Antonio in any sense, Robert Vahrenkamp, general manager of the Guadalupe-Bianco River Authority, pointed out to the Zeitung-Chromcle Thursday.
“Why doesn’t Comal County have a county court?” Farm Bureau President John Karbach asked this
question of three candidate for Comal County Attorney who spoke at the organization’s countywide meeting at Canyon High. The three, Ben Shefman, Frank Suhr. and Calvin Riedei, answered questions from the audience. Shefman said that the number of cases was not sufficient, but Sheriff Walter Fellers disagreed, saying a county court could handle cases now being delayed.
New Braunfels High School
in the district one-act play
competition, “The House of Ber-narda Alba," won first-place honors in competition with six other schools in the district Thursday evening at San Marcos High. Gerry Knowles and Charlotte Haas were selected for two of the six positions on the all-star cast.
50 years ago
Five names, including those of the present incumbents, will appear on the New Braunfels ISD ballot for the election Saturday. The candidates who have announced and whose names will appear on the ballot include Dr. A.J. Hiuman, Dr. E.G. Bielstein, Herbert E. Katt, Dr. M.C. Hagler and Mrs. E.P. Stein, the latter two having announced this week.
R.S. Porter, agent of the New Braunfels Textile Mills, accompanied a delegation representing Texas cotton mills to Austin Tuesday to appeal for government protection from competition of Japanese textiles.
Work on a new bridge to span th* Guadalupe River on Highway No. J at the northeast edge of Nev Braunfels has gone forward rapidly during the past 30 days, witi engineers estimating June 15 to b< the approximate date for complete (rf the structure.
Bailey Jones, secretary of th Chamber of Commerce, this wee called the attention of local citizen to a bill Introduced into the House c Representatives of the Stat Legislature, providing for the right c ingress and egress to and from publi fresh waters by fishermen withoi being guilty of trespass.