Will the Biden-Harris Administration Join or Oppose Calls for the Supreme Court to Overrule the Racist Insular Cases?

Leading Civil Rights Organizations, Members of Congress, Former Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal, and Others Call on Biden-Harris Administration to Condemn Insular Cases 

En Español 

WHAT: Ahead of July 29th deadline for the Justice Department to respond to a petition calling on the Supreme Court to overrule the Insular Cases, Equally American, LatinoJustice PRLDEF and ACLU will host press conference to call on the Biden-Harris Administration to condemn rather than continue to embrace the Insular Cases, a series of racist, Plessy-era decisions that established a colonial framework for the 3.6 million residents of U.S. territories. 

WHO:

  • Neil Weare, President and Founder, Equally American, Co-Counsel in Fitisemanu 
  • Lourdes M. Rosado, President and General Counsel of LatinoJustice PRLDEF, Amicus in Fitisemanu, co-signer of civil rights letter to DOJ
  • David Cole, National Legal Director, ACLU, Amicus in Fitisemanu, co-signer of civil rights letter to DOJ
  • The Hon. Raúl Grijalva and other Members of Congress, Chair, House Resources Committee, Author of H.Res. 279 condemning Insular Cases, led 2021 letter to DOJ calling on it to condemn Insular Cases 
  • Neal Katyal, former Acting Solicitor General of the United States, Amicus counsel in Fitisemanu to descendants of Dred Scott and Isabel Gonzalez
  • John Fitisemanu, Lead plaintiff in Fitisemanu v. United States born on U.S. soil in American Samoa and denied recognition as a U.S. citizen
  • Residents of U.S. territories, denied federal benefits and the right to vote because of the colonial framework established by the Insular Cases
  • Advocates calling on Biden-Harris Administration and Supreme Court to reject the Insular Cases

WHEN: Tuesday, July 12 at 10:00 a.m. ET 

WHERE: Zoom, please register here

Equally American, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) will call on the Biden-Harris Administration to condemn, rather than continue to embrace, the Insular Cases, a series of Plessy-era decisions that established a colonial framework for the 3.6 million residents of U.S. territories. 

Congressman Raúl Grijalva and other members of Congress, former Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal, and individuals from U.S. territories whose lives have been impacted by the Insular Cases are expected to join. 

As part of a Supreme Court decision issued in April, Justices Neil Gorsuch and Sonia Sotomayor called on the Court to overrule the Insular Cases. Gorsuch declared that the Insular Cases “deserve no place in our law,” and Sotomayor called the cases “odious and wrong.” A week later, John Fitisemanu – a passport-holding, tax-paying American denied recognition as a U.S. citizen based on a discriminatory federal law despite his birth on U.S. soil in American Samoa – petitioned the Supreme Court to take up Fitisemanu v. United States and finally answer “whether the Insular Cases should be overruled.” 

The U.S. Department of Justice has until July 29, 2022, to tell the Supreme Court whether it will join advocates to call for the Insular Cases to be overruled, or whether it will oppose them. Prominent civil rights organizations, current and former elected officials and judges from U.S. territories, leading scholars on citizenship and constitutional law, and others have joined to ask the Court to finally turn the page on the Insular Cases. Will the Biden-Harris Justice Department do the same, or continue relying on the Insular Cases to deny constitutional rights in U.S. territories?

This call on the Biden-Harris Administration to condemn the Insular Cases is part of a broader campaign to overrule the Insular Cases, and dismantle the colonial framework they established. Additional information about this campaign is available here

The Supreme Court will decide whether to take up the case, and with it, the call to overrule the Insular Cases, when it considers the Fitisemanu petition this fall.

Do you like this post?

Showing 1 reaction

published this page in Equally American Blog 2022-07-07 08:30:56 -0400