Georgia v. McCollum, 505 U.S. 42, 17 (1992)

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Opinion of the Court

Nor does a prohibition of the exercise of discriminatory peremptory challenges violate a defendant's Sixth Amendment right to the effective assistance of counsel. Counsel can ordinarily explain the reasons for peremptory challenges without revealing anything about trial strategy or any confidential client communications. In the rare case in which the explanation for a challenge would entail confidential communications or reveal trial strategy, an in camera discussion can be arranged. See United States v. Zolin, 491 U. S. 554 (1989); cf. Batson, 476 U. S., at 97 (expressing confidence that trial judges can develop procedures to implement the Court's holding). In any event, neither the Sixth Amendment right nor the attorney-client privilege gives a criminal defendant the right to carry out through counsel an unlawful course of conduct. See Nix, 475 U. S., at 166; Zolin, 491 U. S., at 562- 563. See Swift, Defendants, Racism and the Peremptory Challenge, 22 Colum. Hum. Rights L. Rev. 177, 207-208 (1991).

Lastly, a prohibition of the discriminatory exercise of peremptory challenges does not violate a defendant's Sixth Amendment right to a trial by an impartial jury. The goal of the Sixth Amendment is "jury impartiality with respect to both contestants." Holland v. Illinois, 493 U. S. 474, 483 (1990). See also Hayes v. Missouri, 120 U. S. 68 (1887).

We recognize, of course, that a defendant has the right to an impartial jury that can view him without racial animus, which so long has distorted our system of criminal justice. We have, accordingly, held that there should be a mechanism for removing those on the venire whom the defendant has specific reason to believe would be incapable of confronting and suppressing their racism. See Ham v. South Carolina, 409 U. S. 524, 526-527 (1973); Rosales-Lopez v. United States, 451 U. S. 182, 189-190 (1981) (plurality opinion of White, J.). Cf. Morgan v. Illinois, 504 U. S. 719 (1992) (exclusion of juror in capital trial is permissible upon showing that juror is incapable of considering sentences other than death).

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