Case Briefs- Civil and Constitutional Law Part 1

Case Briefs Civil and Constitutional Law Part 1

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Unformatted text preview: the use of a suspect classification such as race that may render it void under the Equal Protection Clause. This decision was important for more than just racial equality reasons. The Court found that at one time, marriage could be defined as relationships within the same race, but that definition has evolved, and so law needs to be changed to incorporate interracial marriage. o This concept of "evolving definitions of marriage" has since been used in the attempt to justify a number of other things, from same- sex marriage to palimony. • • Washington v. Davis (disparate impact not enough) Brief Fact Summary. A higher percentage of black applicants than white applicants failed a qualifying test administered by the District of Columbia Police Department. Some of the unsuccessful black applicants claimed these effects constituted unconstitutional discrimination against them. Synopsis of Rule of Law. Proof of a disproportionate impact is not enough, standing alone, to ground a finding that a law amounts to unconstitutional discrimination. Issue. Was proof of the disproportionate effects of the qualifying exam sufficient to ground a finding that the exam unconstitutionally discriminated against the respondents? Held. No. A law can be a violation of equal protection on the basis of its effect, without regard for governmental intent. Disproportionate impact is not irrelevant, but it alone does not trigger the rule that racial classifications are subject to the strict scrutiny standard of review. The police force’s...
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This document was uploaded on 03/06/2014 for the course POLISCI 122 at Stanford.

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