Race Discrimination

Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado: Post Decision Recap - Podcast

Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Podcast
John C. Richter March 24, 2017

On March 6, 2017, the Supreme Court released its 5-3 decision in Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado. The majority opinion, written by Justice Kennedy, reveresed and remanded the case holding that when there is a juror's clear statement that he or she relied on racial stereotypes or animus to convict a criminal defendant, the Sixth Amendment requires that the trial court consider the evidence of the statement and any resulting denial of the jury trial guarantee. John Richter, Partner at King & Spalding, joined us to discuss the important ramifications of the Court's striking decision. 


  • John Richter, Partner, King & Spalding

Hardie v. NCAA: Can the NCAA Bar Convicted Felons from Coaching in NCAA-Certified Recruiting Tournaments? - Podcast

Civil Rights Practice Group Podcast
Joshua P. Thompson, Roger B. Clegg March 07, 2017

Hardie v. NCAA is a recently argued case from the Ninth Circuit. It involves a NCAA ban on all convicted felons from coaching in NCAA-certified tournaments held for recruiting student-athletes to NCAA Division I schools. The key question is whether this policy has a “disparate impact” (disproportional statistical effect, but without any racially discriminatory intent) on African Americans -- and whether Title II of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which precludes “discrimination or segregation on the ground of race, color, religion, or national origin” in “places of public accommodation,” bans such disproportionate results. The district court ruled that Title II did not cover disparate impact, but, in a surprising move, the NCAA abandoned that winning argument on appeal.

Pacific Legal Foundation Senior Attorney Joshua Thompson discussed the parties’ arguments and explained why PLF as amicus was the only party to support the lower court’s judgment. Roger Clegg, President and General Counsel of the Center for Equal Opportunity, will also join us to moderate the call.


  • Mr. Joshua P. Thompson, Senior Attorney, Pacific Legal Foundation
  • Moderator: Mr. Roger Clegg, President & General Counsel, Center for Equal Opportunity

ABA Rule 8.4 - Podcast

Professional Responsibility & Legal Education and Free Speech & Election Law Practice Groups Podcast
Eugene Volokh December 13, 2016

Professor Eugene Volokh of the UCLA School of Law joined us Monday, December 12 to discuss the ABA’s new Rule 8.4 on professional misconduct. The Rule states that it is professional misconduct for a lawyer to “engage in conduct that the lawyer knows or reasonably should know is harassment or discrimination on the basis of race, sex, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status or socioeconomic status in conduct related to the practice of law.” The ABA goes further in Comments, stating that “Such discrimination includes harmful verbal or physical conduct that manifests bias or prejudice towards others,” and that the Rule applies in any situation, even social, that is “connected to the practice of law.” Professor Volokh discussed the First Amendment implications and reaction to the new rule.


  • Professor Eugene Volokh, , Gary T. Schwartz Professor of Law, UCLA School of Law

Redistricting Tested in the Supreme Court - Podcast

Free Speech & Election Law and Civil Rights Practice Groups Podcast
Maya Noronha December 07, 2016

On December 5, the U.S. Supreme Court will hold oral arguments on two redistricting cases, Bethune-Hill v. Virginia State Board of Elections and McCrory v. Harris. After the movement of population, both Virginia and North Carolina legislatures redrew plans for their state legislative districts. However, plaintiffs in each state challenged the plans as racial gerrymanders diluting the vote of African-American voters. Both cases raise the question of how to comply with the Voting Rights Act requirement that racial minorities have the ability to elect representatives of their choice, along with the Constitutional prohibition of race predominating in the drawing of plans. The Court will be also be asked to clarify the acceptable ways to consider minority populations in drawing plans, what plaintiffs need to show to prove a racial gerrymander, and what would trigger strict scrutiny.


  • Ms. Maya M. Noronha, Associate, Baker & Hostetler LLP


Courthouse Steps: Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado - Podcast

Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Podcast
John C. Richter October 11, 2016

On Tuesday, October 11, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado. This case involves the constitutionality of a Colorado rule that bars a defendant from introducing evidence that a juror was racially biased. The justices will consider whether applying a no-impeachment rule to block evidence in this context violates the Sixth Amendment right to an impartial jury.


  • John C. Richter, Partner, King & Spalding