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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Who is the Chief Justice, really? Supreme Court decisions will test Roberts' approach

By David G. Savage




This week, when the High Court hands down its decisions on some of the most debated social issues of the day, a clear picture will finally emerge


JewishWorldReview.com |

W ASHINGTON— (MCT) The leadership of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. will be put to a major test this week when the Supreme Court hands down its decisions on college affirmative action, voting rights and gay marriage.

The conventional view has been that the court will fracture 5-4 along ideological lines in all three areas. But that presents Roberts with a difficult choice. He could join his fellow conservatives to win at least some of the major cases and preside over a deeply divided court. Or he could use his authority to seek a narrow middle ground.

The conservatives, Roberts among them, have been steadily critical of government policies that put an emphasis on race. They have questioned whether race-based admission at state universities and federal scrutiny of Southern voting laws are still justified today.

But the court's four liberals would surely dissent angrily if the court were to strike down the historic Voting Rights Act of 1965 and prohibit all college affirmative action.

At the same time, the liberals, joined by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, have been seen as likely to support same-sex marriage. However, the conservatives would dissent loudly if the majority were to make gay marriage a constitutional right.

Increasingly in recent years, Roberts has taken the more moderate course. In speeches and interviews, the chief justice has spoken of his devotion to the rule of law and of his aim to preserve the court as a legal forum, not a political tribunal.

Last year, Roberts surprised the conservatives in the health care and immigration cases. He joined with Kennedy and the liberals to rule that the federal government, not the states, controls the enforcement of the immigration laws, a decision that blocked most of Arizona's immigration law.

And, acting on his own, he found a narrow way to uphold President Barack Obama's health care law. He agreed with conservatives that Congress could not mandate that people buy health insurance, but he said it could impose a tax on those who refused to do so.

This year's cases could be resolved through narrow decisions, but doing so may depend on whether the chief justice can find a majority for a middle-ground option.

In the affirmative action case, the University of Texas was sued by a rejected white applicant who argued that the use of race as an admissions factor was unconstitutional. The university said it needed affirmative action to ensure the student body at the Austin campus was racially and ethnically diverse.

But in recent years, the Austin campus has seen an influx of Latino and black students, thanks to the state's so-called Top 10 law that promises admission to top graduates from every high school in the state. This leaves the court an option to rule that while diversity on campus is vitally important, Texas did not need an affirmative action policy to achieve it, preserving the possibility of college affirmative action programs in other states.

The voting rights case is a challenge to one part of the 1965 law that requires most Southern states and municipalities to obtain "pre-clearance" from Washington before making changes in their election or voting laws. Critics say this special scrutiny for the South is outdated and not needed because blacks register and vote at the same rates as whites. Civil rights veterans say the law is needed to deter schemes in small towns that can deprive black voters of all political power.

Four years ago, the law appeared doomed in the Supreme Court, but Roberts wrote a surprise opinion that allowed a Texas water district to escape the law. This narrow option put off a constitutional ruling.

This year, the law appeared doomed again during an oral argument in February. But Roberts could once again avoid a broad ruling by giving states and counties the right to escape the law if they have had no violations for a decade.


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In the same-sex marriage case from California, the court's liberals said they were wary of ruling broadly in a way that would force all states to authorize same-sex marriage. Roberts questioned whether the sponsors of Proposition 8 had the legal standing to appeal after a federal judge struck down the ballot measure as unconstitutional and state officials refused to appeal.

This has led to speculation the court will hand down a procedural ruling that might clear the way for same-sex marriage in California, but that avoids a constitutional ruling with nationwide impact.

Roberts, 58, is about to finish his eighth year as chief justice. Early in his tenure, the court's liberals were upset with him when he joined the conservative bloc to write broad changes in the law. In the most famous example, they took up a seemingly small case involving a tiny nonprofit, incorporated group called Citizens United. It wanted to sell a video that was harshly critical of Hillary Rodham Clinton, then a senator running for president.

Rather than rule narrowly that the nonprofit had a right to market its politically charged video, Roberts signed on to a broad opinion by Justice Kennedy that ruled all corporations — including profit-making giants — had a free-speech right to spend unlimited sums on politics.

The Citizens United decision was seen by many as an overreach, and it made the Roberts court a target for critics on the left.

Since then, the chief justice has steered away from broad opinions and tried to avoid deeply fractured decisions. This week will test whether he can do it again.

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