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Timberwolves, Texas, and the Supreme Court

Stuff happening.

Still a Wolf
Still a Wolf

We start with yesterday's big Wolves rumor:

Apparently, the Cavaliers inquired about trading for Kevin Love, offering Tristan Thompson, Dion Waiters, and the first pick in the draft. Yeah. No. Zach Harper has a good piece covering the relevant issues over at AWAW.

Various suggestions are that the Wolves are offering 9, 26, and Derrick Williams to move up in the draft, presumably for Victor Oladipo. This seems like a lot, and I'm not convinced Flip is going this far, but perhaps he is. I'm ambivalent. It's all dependent on how you value the player. I don't love Oladipo _that_ much, but what do I know?

In the meantime, Flip flew out to see a few Wolves in L.A. and reported that Love, Rubio, and Williams look good. He's now back and finds all the trade suggestions amusing.

Draft Express now has the Wolves taking Kentavious Caldwell-Pope at 9 (national and local opinion seems to be coalescing around this pick), and Lucas Nogueira at 26. I can live with that. You?

Darren Wolfson had a chat yesterday. Nothing really new, though he did emphasize the point several times that Flip _really_ doesn't want to pay AK $10M next season,and probably doesn't want to pay him at all. And he still wants Mayo. Sees the Wolves stashing/trading 26. Go read it if you have a few minutes.

Incredible goings on at the Texas legislature this weekend, culminating in a day long filibuster and ultimately the defeat of an omnibus anti-choice bill that would have effectively closed almost every abortion provider in the state, led by State Senator Wendy Davis and hundreds of protesters in the chamber.

Back story: Every provision in this bill (Texas SB 5) was beaten back during the regular session of the legislature. In fact, most Texans (!) don't want any more abortion restrictions, according to public opinion polling. Governor Perry and the republicans in the legislature decided to use a "special session," which has different rules and is intended for emergency legislation, to ram this through.

Wendy Davis said no. After a weekend's worth of drama, the vote was scheduled for yesterday, legally the last day of the special session. Wendy Davis stood and spoke for 12 hours about the horrors of this legislation, never once sitting down or leaning on anything. When she was finally stopped (by republicans breaking the rules), the crowd in the gallery took over and made so much noise for half an hour that the clock eventually ran out. The Senate held an after midnight vote anyway, but ultimately admitted early this morning that it didn't count and that the bill was dead.

For now. Threats to call another special session have already begun. Still, a spine-tingling moment last night in the Texas Senate, where old white dudes were prevented from exerting control over women's reproductive systems.

In the meantime, the Supreme Court finally announced it's rulings in two same sex marriage cases this morning:

Kennedy writes for a 5-4 majority in DoMA. DoMA is unconstitutional on 5th amendment equal protection grounds. Federal government cannot exclude from rights legally married same sex couples. In other words, if a state recognizes a couple as married, the federal government cannot deny them rights as married people regardless of their sex.

Dissent from Scalia and others seems based on jurisdictional issues. He also argues that the majority has failed to enunciate a standard for reviewing laws that define marriage. (EDIT: Not clear what his point is; this case isn't about state marriage laws).

Roberts points out that the Court's ruling is silent on the question of whether states can continue to define marriage as they choose.

Had the Court gone the other way on this after yesterday's "States Rights!" gutting of the Voting Rights Act, it would have been an ever bigger laughingstock.

The Court holds that the petitioners in the California Prop 8 case, Hollingsworth v. Perry lack standing to bring the suit. 5-4 decision written by Roberts. Strange group: dissenters are Kennedy joined by Thomas, Alito, and Sotomayor.

Private parties do not have standing to defend the constitionality of a state law when the state fails to defend.

Two fantastic musical birthdays today:

Mick Jones of The Clash is 58

Patty Smyth is 56: