3 responses

  1. Hunter
    August 28, 2014

    I just had this image of some local nutjob, with backing from Liberty Counsel or ADF, threatening to sue to overturn the referendum.

    I know — they would have no grounds. That’s never stopped them before.

  2. Soren456
    August 28, 2014

    If a city adopted anti-discrimination ordinances, why would city hiring practices fall outside their own jurisdiction?

  3. Jim Burroway
    August 28, 2014

    That’s at the very heart of jurisdiction at the local level. Cities can set policies for their own actions, but they can’t pass laws forcing themselves to do something or to prevent themselves from doing something. If a city could, and then if it did want to break its own ordinance, all it would have to do is vote to rescind or change that ordinance. The only things that would truly bind a city’s actions are state and federal laws — and the city charter.

    (It’s also why state legislatures aren’t subject to laws passed by state legislatures, and Congress isn’t bound by laws passed by Congress. Although it’s a little bit trickier there because of the separation of powers. Congress can pass a law requiring governmental agencies act in a certain way, mainly through its budgeting powers. In that case, the Congress passes the law, and the President signs and implements it. But again, because of separation of powers, there are limits to what the President can do enforce such a law on Congress.)

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