For the second night in a row, a legal expert appearing on Lou Dobbs Tonight on CNN predicted that Hazleton’s chances in the lawsuit are not good.
Tonight it was Jonathan Turley of George Washington University:
But it remains really a political, not a legal solution. They have got to change the people in Washington if they want to change the policy or at least change the minds of the people in Washington.
DOBBS: And meanwhile, it sounds to me like you are not giving the community of Hazleton or, any other community, in the entire country much confidence they will prevail.
TURLEY: I’d have to bet against them. It’s not that it’s a totally lost cause, but it’s just going to be a very rough and long road to hoe for them.
Last night it was Jeffrey Toobin, CNN’s senior legal analyst:
TOOBIN: Well, I think the toughest test for this ordinance is a doctrine called preemption, which is preemption is a constitutional law doctrine that says when the federal government is involved in regulating an area, the states and localities can’t contradict or occupy the space.
The most famous case about preemption involves nuclear power plants.
TOOBIN: They said — their federal laws dictate safety at nuclear power plants. Well, some states said, no, we want these — the rules to be tighter, to be safer, and the Supreme Court said no, this is preempted by the federal government. The federal government determines it. I think that’s the risk in this law.
DOBBS: And that’s the risk. Who do you think prevails?
TOOBIN: I think the ACLU and the Chamber of Commerce, I think they’re going to prevail. I think the judge is going to avoid the issue about whether it’s discriminatory, and simply say, look, this is a federal matter. Hazleton, stay out of it.
Andy in Harrisburg