A federal appeals court has upheld a ruling that allows for the implementation of a new, unelected court system in Jackson.
On Thursday, the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals released that U.S. District Court Judge Henry Wingate’s decision to deny a motion to block the Capitol Complex Improvement District (CCID) court from going into effect would be allowed.
The motion – which was denied by Wingate a little over one week ago – was filed by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) as the new court was anticipated to become effective on Monday, Jan. 1.
Back in April, the NAACP filed a lawsuit against two controversial bills – House Bill 1020 and Senate Bill 2343 – saying that the legislation infringed on the rights of Jackson residents. Combined, the two bills expand the CCID, which is a portion of the city run by state police, and implement an unelected court to hear all preliminary and criminal matters within the district.
Eric Holder, the former United States attorney general who is representing the NAACP in the case, argued upon the lawsuit’s filing that the goal of lawmakers is to overtake a majority Black city that they have neglected for decades.
“Mississippi House Bill 1020 and Senate Bill 2343 represent a disturbing regression, rolling back decades of progress by stripping Jackson residents of their fundamental right to democratically elect leaders, undermining the authority of those they have elected, and severely restricting their First Amendment right to freedom of speech,” Holder stated. “This Legislative body has proven that they are uninterested in upholding their sworn oath to protect the constitutional rights of their constituents, including the majority Black residents of Jackson.”
Shortly after Wingate’s decision was released, the appeals court placed an administrative stay on the CCID Court from going into effect Friday, Jan. 5. Since then, the court Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has vacated the stay, allowing for the CCID Court to become effective immediately.
Republican lawmakers have repeatedly stated that the intention behind the legislation is not to overtake Jackson but to help the capital
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