Which of the following combinations is incorrect?
A. Race -- suspect class
B. Gender -- quasi-suspect class
C. Age -- nonsuspect class
D. Sexual orientation -- quasi-suspect class
E. Social class -- nonsuspect class
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The correct answer to this question is Option D. At this point, sexual orientation has not been declared to be a quasi-suspect class. There have been cases in which federal courts have labelled sexual orientation as either suspect or quasi-suspect, but the Supreme Court of the United States has yet to agree with these labels.
The three types of classes mentioned in the question are important because they determine how strictly courts will scrutinize laws that affect members of those classes. Laws that have to do with suspect classes like race get the most scrutiny. It is very hard for laws that are based on suspect classes to pass constitutional muster. Quasi-suspect classes get an intermediate level of scrutiny while laws that are based on nonsuspect classes are almost always upheld.
The Supreme Court has yet to rule that sexual orientation is a quasi-protected class. This means that Option D is the correct answer.
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