In February of 2012, the city of St. Paul withdrew its appeal to the United States Supreme Court in Magner v. Gallagher just weeks before oral argument. The case was a discrimination case under The Fair Housing Act. Reportedly, civil rights groups pressured St. Paul to drop the case out of fear that the disparate impact provisions in the Fair Housing Act would be weakened.
Now, the same issue is back before the high court, which yesterday accepted cert in Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action v. Mt. Holly. Forbes online describes Mt. Holly as the first impact to reach the Supreme Court since the administration was accused of engineering a settlement that “squelched” the St. Paul case.
Also according to Forbes, Philadelphia lawyer John Culhane said, “The perception is the Supreme Court has taken this case because it feels there is no disparate-impact theory of liability, and is prepared to rule to that effect.” The Third Circuit ruled that plaintiffs had made a prima facie case of disparate impact.
Magner has been on hold in Minnesota federal court while the parties awaited the Supreme Court’s determination on Mount Holly.