Dave Davis filed a response to the Attorney General’s Office’s motion for summary judgment, saying despite claims the decolonization registry is not based on race, eligibility based on “ancestry” is racial discrimination.
Guam – Arnold “Dave” Davis is answering back to the Attorney General’s Office’s motion for summary judgment in the controversial plebiscite lawsuit in which Davis is challenging the plebiscite law over discrimination claims.
Davis continues to drive home the point that the decolonization registry violates his constitutional rights. The registry was created to give “native inhabitants of Guam” the chance to express their political status desires with the president, Congress and the United Nations, which include independence, free association or statehood. The plebiscite will only occur when 70 percent of eligible voters have registered.
Qualified registrants are determined by ancestry to those who were affected by the 1950 Organic Act of Guam.
Davis says Congress has previously addressed the issue of any government funded voter registration and only allowed registration to be based on citizenship, civil capacity and residence.
Therefore, he believes, classifying citizens into a certain group denies the disfavored groups their fundamental right to vote under the US constitution’s equal protection clause.
He also says that even taking the AG’s argument that the plebiscite is not race based, the registry is still unconstitutional because it is still ancestry-based and uses blood-lines to determine eligibility.
In fact, Davis cited a similar case in Hawaii, in which the Supreme Court previously determined that ancestry was a “proxy for race.” In that case, Davis noted, the Hawaii government argued that the “classification was limited to those whose ancestors were in Hawaii at a particular time, regardless of race.”
Davis then takes a jab at Guam’s request, comparing it to that of classification of American Indian tribes. “Guam wants ‘Native Inhabitants of Guam’ to be treated like an American Indian tribe.” he says in court papers. “They are not.”
You can read Davis’ response to the AG’s motion by clicking on the file below.