161 posts tagged with scotus.
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Life and death of a black and white

Texas executes Mexican national who was denied consul visit. [more inside]
posted by mrducts on Aug 6, 2008 - 121 comments

Heller v. D.C. Decided

Heller v. District of Columbia, the U.S. Supreme Court's first actual interpretation of the Second Amendment, has just come down. In a 5-4 decision, the Justices ruled D.C.'s comprehensive handgun ban to be unconstitutional. Antonin Scalia writes for the majority.
posted by Navelgazer on Jun 26, 2008 - 364 comments

"The test for determining the scope of this provision must not be subject to manipulation by those whose power it is designed to restrain."

In a five-to-four decision, the Supreme Court ruled today that detainees at Guantanamo Bay have a constitutional right to habeas corpus review:
Security depends upon a sophisticated intelligence apparatus and the ability of our Armed Forces to act and to interdict. There are further considerations, however. Security subsists, too, in fidelity to freedom’s first principles. Chief among these are freedom from arbitrary and unlawful restraint and the personal liberty that is secured by adherence to the separation of powers.[...] Liberty and security can be reconciled; and in our system they are reconciled within the framework of the law. The Framers decided that habeas corpus, a right of first importance, must be a part of that framework, a part of that law.
Decision, Summary, Analysis
posted by anotherpanacea on Jun 12, 2008 - 118 comments

Live Free Or Die ... Silly?

Members of the Montana legislature (out of session) appear to be attempting to force the Supreme Court's hand in a fairly landmark gun-control case, Heller v. DC. Through an extra-session resolution, they are invoking contract law, by stating that the contract between the Montana people, through our Constitution, and the Federal Government will be ... ? ... if the Heller case is decided 'incorrectly'. What is at issue is one of the SCOTUS' seminal opportunities to rule concerning collective rights versus individual rights for firearm possession. [more inside]
posted by Wulfgar! on Feb 21, 2008 - 97 comments

Al Odah v. U.S. and Boumediene v. Bush

Al Odah v. U.S. and Boumediene v. Bush go before SCOTUS Streaming on C-Span today. The Center for Constitutional Rights (great podcast) will argue before the Supreme Court today:
Immediately after the Supreme Court’s decision in Rasul, The Center for Constitutional Rights and cooperating counsel filed 11 new habeas petitions in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia on behalf of over 70 detainees. These cases eventually became the consolidated cases of Al Odah v. United Statesand Boumediene v. Bush, the leading cases determining the significance of the Supreme Court’s decision in Rasul, the rights of non-citizens to challenge the legality of their detention in an offshore U.S. military base, and the constitutionality of the Military Commissions Act of 2006.

posted by ao4047 on Dec 5, 2007 - 29 comments

"we upheld against proportionality attack a sentence of 40 years' imprisonment for possession with intent to distribute nine ounces of marijuana" - Justice Kennedy

DrugPolicyCases.com - Yakov Spektor, a New York-based attorney, combed through two decades of US Supreme Court opinions "to discern certain trends in the Court's treatment of various issues" related to the War on Drugs. The collection of opinions are organized by case, author and topic.
posted by daksya on Nov 26, 2007 - 8 comments

Two doors down

This happens a lot. I mean a lot. All over the place. All these stories are within the last five weeks. Inexcusable, some say. If they break in and cause damage, they have to pay, though, right? Not according to the U.S. Supreme Court, which says if your address is on the warrant, you get to pay, even if it's a mistake.
posted by Kirth Gerson on Jun 8, 2007 - 149 comments

Supreme Court Alters 12(b)(6) Standards

The Supreme Court issued its opinion Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly [pdf] today. Although superficially an antitrust case, the Court examined the standard of review under 12(b)(6) and concluded that the old "no set of facts" standard should be officially retired.
posted by monju_bosatsu on May 21, 2007 - 34 comments

Partial-Birth Abortion Ban

New Justices, New Rules: How the Supreme Court's Validation of the Federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act Affects Women's Constitutional Liberty and Equality. A two-part FindLaw analysis of Gonzales v. Carhart.
posted by homunculus on May 8, 2007 - 26 comments

Abortions for none, miniature American flags for others

The Supreme Court has upheld the federal ban on "Partial-Birth Abortion," in a 5-4 decision. The federal ban provides no exceptions for the health of the mother, the reason previous Courts overturned the law. Justice Kennedy argued the law banning the procedure should stay, as opponents "have not demonstrated that the Act would be unconstitutional in a large fraction of relevant cases." In a scathing dissent, Justice Ginsburg alluded to the politics of recent judicial appointments, noting "...the Court's defense of it cannot be understood as anything other than an effort to chip away at a right declared again and again by this Court -- and with increasing comprehension of its centrality to women's lives. A decision of the character the Court makes today should not have staying power."
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Apr 18, 2007 - 219 comments

SCOTUS requires EPA to consider global warming

In a 5-4 opinion [pdf], the Supreme Court concluded today that the EPA has the authority to regulate greenhouse gases that may contribute to global warming, and must examine the scientific evidence of a link between those gases contained in the exhausts of new cars and trucks and climate change. Justice Stevens wrote the majority opinion, and Justice Scalia wrote a dissent, joined by Roberts, Thomas, and Alito. ScotusBlog summary here.
posted by monju_bosatsu on Apr 2, 2007 - 30 comments

Crime doesn't pay.

Tighter restrictions on damage awards. The two questions presented to the U.S. Supreme Court centered on whether or not the highly reprehensible conduct of a defendant is analogous to a crime and can "override" the constitutional requirement that punitive damages be reasonably related to the plaintiffs harm. The answer is no. (21 page pdf) Held: 1. A punitive damages award based in part on a jury’s desire to punish a defendant for harming nonparties amounts to a taking of property from the defendant without due process. The majority: Roberts, Alito, Kennedy, Souter, and Breyer. Dissenting: Ginsburg, Scalia, Stevens, and Thomas.
posted by three blind mice on Feb 20, 2007 - 37 comments

"President Bush overstepped his authority"

The U.S. Supreme Court has just ruled President Bush overstepped his authority in creating military war crimes trials for Guantanamo Bay detainees. The 5-3 vote (Roberts recused himself) found the "military commissions" illegal under both military justice law and the Geneva Convention. More from SCOTUSblog.
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Jun 29, 2006 - 191 comments

Money continues to count as speech.

SCOTUS strikes down campaign finance restrictions [pdf]. The Supreme Court issued an opinion today in Randall v. Sorrell, striking down limits on campaign contributions and campaign spending imposed by the state of Vermont. The Court, in a fractured opinion (six separate opinions, including two dissents), concluded that restrictions on both contributions and expenditures ran afoul of the First Amendment. More from Amy Howe at SCOTUSblog. Expect more from Rick Hasen later today.
posted by monju_bosatsu on Jun 26, 2006 - 81 comments

... a page of history is worth a volume of logic.

Injunctions in patent cases not automatic. The U.S. Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision (16 page pdf) on Monday in the dispute between eBay and MercExchange. The Court ruled in favor of eBay finding that the lower Appeals Court erred as a matter of law in creating a general rule that “courts will issue permanent injunctions against patent infringement absent exceptional circumstances.” In the concurring opinion written by Chief Justice Roberts, joined by Scalia and Ginsberg, Roberts citing Court precedent noted that: “[d]iscretion is not whim, and limiting discretion according to legal standards helps promote the basic principle of justice that like cases should be decided alike.”
posted by three blind mice on May 17, 2006 - 25 comments

Luttig resigns Fourth Circuit post.

Luttig Resigns. Judge J. Michael Luttig, long considered a front-runner for a Supreme Court nomination, at least until he was passed over by President Bush, has resigned his position on the Fourth circuit. Luttig will take over as general counsel to Boeing. Read Boeing's press release and Luttig's resignation letter [pdf].
posted by monju_bosatsu on May 10, 2006 - 29 comments

The Fourth Amendment

The Fourth Amendment provides, in part, that "...no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause." The Supreme Court has issued its (yet another) 8-0 opinion, authored by Justice Scalia in the case of United States v. Grubbs, overturning the Ninth Circuit decision. Justice Souter filed a concurring opinion. Grubbs deals with the question of anticipatory warrants, and it is the first time that the Court has addressed the practice. It appears that under this ruling, preemptive warrants can issue without existing probable cause, but merely on the supposition that probable cause will exist in the future.

Some legal scholars had anticipated that at least the more conservative members of the Court would rule against anticipatory warrants. After all, under Blackstone's analysis of the common law rule that contributed to the Fourth Amendment, as noted by Professor Orin Kerr in the NYU Journal of Law and Liberty symposium on the subject, warrants "issue" when they are signed by the judge, and not when the precedent condition occurs. Professor Chris Slobogin disagrees. Kerr has posted a preliminary analysis of the decision on his new blawg. The case has previously been discussed by the smart people over at the Volokh Conspiracy.
posted by Pontius Pilate on Mar 22, 2006 - 45 comments

Vegetal ruling

Religious use of ayahuasca ruled lawful in U.S.
posted by xowie on Feb 21, 2006 - 79 comments

Just how important are law clerks?

David Garrow reviewed Justice Blackmun's papers, released to the public in 2005, and concludes that towards the end of his career, Blackmun's clerks all but signed his opinions. In an interview, discussing senility and Supreme Court Justices, Garrow argues that there has been "a dramatic increase over the last 35 or 45 years in the amount of the justices’ work that is performed by their law clerks," and recommends a "reduction to two or, even better yet, one clerk" from the four clerks available per Justice now. Garrow also comments on the now-deceased Chief Justice Rehnquist, who suffered from an addiction to painkillers in the 1980s. Garrow's view is controversial, though, and Legal Affairs published several responses in the same issue. Other law professors have weighed in, including Dan Markel, Mark Tushnet, and some of the folks at the Volokh Conspiracy. So how large is the impact of law clerks?
posted by monju_bosatsu on Feb 15, 2006 - 63 comments

Bill aims to set up court challenge to Roe v. Wade

South Dakota House approves sweeping abortion ban Although saying they personally abhor abortion, opponents made several unsuccessful attempts to make exceptions in cases of rape and incest, and to protect pregnant women whose health may be endangered.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood on Feb 10, 2006 - 50 comments

Supreme Court Oral Argument MP3s.

The Oyez Project has placed online mp3s for all of the arguments from the 2004 term of the United States Supreme Court. The 2004 terms spans all cases argued between October 4, 2004, and April 27, 2005, including United States v. Booker and United States v. FanFan, Roper v. Simmons , Raich v. Gonzales, Kelo v. City of New London, McCreary County v. ACLU, and Van Orden v. Perry. [slightly more inside]
posted by monju_bosatsu on Feb 7, 2006 - 25 comments

Alito's First Vote

Alito's First Vote. In his first significant act on the Supreme Court, Justice Alito splits with his conservative colleagues, and votes to refuse to let Missouri execute a death-row inmate contesting lethal injection. You can read the (very short) order on page four of yesterday's order sheet [pdf]. More commentary at SCOTUSblog, and discussion of Alito's approach to the death penalty is available at Sentencing Law & Policy.
posted by monju_bosatsu on Feb 2, 2006 - 38 comments

Alito is Supreme

Samuel Alito was sworn in as the nation's 110th Supreme Court justice Tuesday after being confirmed by the Senate by a vote of 58-42.(CNN)

John Kerry: This morning, 42 Senators voted against Alito's nomination. That's the highest number of votes against any Supreme Court nominee since Clarence Thomas in 1991. (from Kerry's email)
posted by doctor_negative on Jan 31, 2006 - 76 comments

Supreme Court rules in Ayotte.

The Supreme Court decided Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood today, vacating the lower court's ruling that the parental notification statute was unconstitional. Instead, the Court instructed the lower court to consider narrower relief. The Court, in an opinion [pdf] written by Justice O'Connor, held that if enforcing a statute that regulates access to abortion would be unconstitutional in medical emergencies, invalidating the statute entirely is not always necessary or justified, for lower courts may be able to render narrower declaratory and injunctive relief. [more inside]
posted by monju_bosatsu on Jan 18, 2006 - 33 comments

Supreme Court upholds Oregon's assisted suicide law.

Supreme Court upholds Oregon's assisted suicide law. Justice Kenedy wrote the opinion for the majority, concluding that Ashcroft did not have the authority to sanction doctors under the Controlled Substances Act. Justice Scalia dissented, joined by Justice Thomas and Chief Justice Roberts. Thomas also wrote a separate dissent. The Washington Post has the opinions, and you can get the pdf from the Supreme Court's website.
posted by monju_bosatsu on Jan 17, 2006 - 44 comments

Rumsfeld v. FAIR

The Supreme Court heard arguments yesterday in Rumsfeld v. FAIR, a case challenging the Solomon Amendment, a US federal law that allows the government to cut federal funding to universities that refuse to allow military recruiting on campus. FAIR is a coalition of law schools challenging this law on the basis that the US military's policy of prohibiting open homosexuals from serving violates the schools' anti-discrimination policies (see section 6-3). Summing the issue up nicely, the dean of one law school said of the US military, "If it were a private employer who discriminated on the basis of sexual orientation, race or gender, we wouldn't allow them here on campus." .rm C-SPAN coverage here.
posted by thirteenkiller on Dec 7, 2005 - 56 comments

Grokster shuts down

Grokster shuts down after their Supreme Court defeat [pdf] this summer, Grokster has chosen to settle its case with MGM et al., admit to wrongdoing, and stop distributing its software. Their website now displays the message: "There are legal services for downloading music and movies. This service is not one of them.". Another victoy for Hollywood in the intellectual property war. Who's next?
posted by falconred on Nov 7, 2005 - 32 comments

Scalito

Newsfilter: Samuel A. Alito Jr. is a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. His ideological likeness to United States Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia has earned him the nickname "Scalito." According to CNN, he is expected to be nominated to the Supreme Court later today. This site provides more background and links to some of his important decisions. Here's one anecdote about him. If you want, you can even rate him at Rate It All.
posted by Joey Michaels on Oct 31, 2005 - 223 comments

The blog of the #1 smartest President ever's #1 pick to be the next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court!

Harriet Miers's Blog!!! Silly parody web site in the tradition of the Jeff Gannon blog (related: see Knot Jeff Gannon) and the short-lived Osama blog (not too many internet cafes in Baluchistan apparently), or light-hearted response to this really obvious bit of astroturfing by FOBs (friends of Bush) known to bend the truth a little to help out a pal in need?
posted by clevershark on Oct 4, 2005 - 20 comments

Well Oiled Strippers vs Rick Texas Cowboys

When can federal bankruptcy judges rule on state probate matters? In Marshall vs Marshall, the Supreme Court will consider this rather unsexy, technical issue during its next session.
posted by mischief on Sep 27, 2005 - 14 comments

JWR

Chief Justice William Rehnquist died Saturday at age 80. cnn reports renquists death
posted by R. Mutt on Sep 3, 2005 - 207 comments

Sandra D O'C.

Bush says he may consider non-judges to replace Sandra Day O'Connor. Is it time to panic? Is the terrbile prediction of a Justice Ann Coulter made in this thread coming one step closer to being realized? Buckle up Either way, because Rehnquest has been hospitalized as well.
posted by piratebowling on Jul 13, 2005 - 66 comments

Fasten seat belts

O'Connor steps down. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor has announced her retirement.
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Jul 1, 2005 - 186 comments

Supreme Court Round-up for 6/27/05

The Supreme Court's Big Day

The court chose not to review the controversy surrounding "reporter's privilege" in withholding the names of confidential sources; meaning reporters may continue to be jailed or fined for refusing to name sources in court.
 
In Brand-X, the Court decided 6-3 that cable providers did not have to allow competitors to access their lines (the way DSL companies do). FCC opponents had been hopeful the Court would find the other way, opening new markets for competition and service options.

The Court ruled one of two Ten Commandment displays are unconstitutional. The decalogue display on a courthouse wall in Kentucky was found 5-4 to be an unconstitutional endorsement of religion because it was serving a religious purpose. However, the Ten Commandments display on the grounds of Texas' state capitol were found to be constitutional.

The Court finally decided the MGM v Grokster case. The Court found unanimously that the file sharing service can be held liable for the copyright infringement of their users.
posted by falconred on Jun 27, 2005 - 56 comments

Kelo et al v. City of New London

Supreme Court rules in favor of New London and all cities, property can be transferred from one private citizen to another. Sandra Day O'Conner in her outraged dissent, "The beneficiaries are likely to be those citizens with disproportionate influence and power in the political process, including large corporations and development firms." More on the SCOTUSblog. History repeats itself? Anyone remember Oliver Cromwell "... prominent in defending the people of The Fens from wealthy landowners who wanted to drive them off their land."
posted by geoff. on Jun 23, 2005 - 155 comments

Scalia questioned on sodomy at NYU

Justice Scalia faces probing question at NYU due to previous dissenting opinion in Texas sodomy case. Questioner responds to the controversy. via
posted by peacay on Apr 15, 2005 - 54 comments

blogging mgm vs. grokster

Blogging it Live from outside SCOTUS and MGM vs. Grokster, it's NickD.
posted by malaprohibita on Mar 28, 2005 - 16 comments

Ten Commandments monuments are MOVIE PROMOS?

Apparently, thousands of Ten Commandments monuments around the country began their lives as promos for the 1956 movie "The Ten Commandments" (Including the one in the case argued before the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this month). "The stars of the movie, Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner and Martha Scott, attended many of the dedications." Transcripts of the March 2nd arguments here and here. This was also pointed out on the NPR radio comedy program "Wait, Wait - Don't Tell Me" (click the "Listen" link next to "Opening Panel Round: The Supreme Court and Cecil B. DeMille"). Does/should this affect your views on the case? Is this a minor detail, or is it an under-reported fact in the U.S. media? [via Monkeyfilter]
posted by spock on Mar 15, 2005 - 27 comments

Grin and bear it.

Seizure of land for the public good or unconstitutional cash grab? Originally, the power of eminent domain was used by government to condemn property for the public good, usually to build railroads or highways or bridges. This power has been expanded to redevelop dilapidated neighbourhoods, and ultimately, "economic development" (public good by way of jobs and taxes). What will you do when Pfizer wants to build a research facility *on* your backyard and your government helps them do it? Hint: it's nothing new, just wait for 2008 or 2012 (maybe).
posted by loquax on Feb 23, 2005 - 40 comments

The Fourth Amendment grows narrower

The Supreme Court, in a 6-2 decision Monday, ruled that police do not violate the Fourth Amendment when they use a drug-detecting dog to locate illegal drugs in the trunk of a car during a legal traffic stop. The decision, and dissents from Ginsburg and Souter.
posted by trharlan on Jan 24, 2005 - 45 comments

This Highway Adoped By the Ku Klux Klan

This Highway Adopted By The Ku Klux Klan The US Supreme Court has declined an appeal by the state of Missouri seeking to reverse an 8th Circuit opinion which allows the Ku Klux Klan to adopt a highway. Under the controlling ruling of the 8th Circuit, "desire to exclude controversial organizations in order to prevent 'road rage' or public backlash on the highways against the adopters' unpopular beliefs is simply not a legitimate governmental interest that would support the enactment of speech-abridging regulations."
posted by expriest on Jan 10, 2005 - 114 comments

Taking the Long View

Only in 1967 did Loving v. Virginia overturn vigorously-enforced laws against interracial marriage in these 15 states--Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia. Only in 1964 did the Civil Rights Act overturn laws against equal access to voting, public accommodation, and public education. Only in 1963 did the Equal Pay Act mandate that men and women be paid the same wage for the same work at the same job. History isn't a superhighway, leading us in straight lines toward utopia. We fall back and we move forward, but over the past fifty years, the United States has become considerably more inclusive and equality of access to opportunity has widened. Take a look at this article from the Atlantic Monthly in 1956--1956!--if you don't believe me.
posted by Sidhedevil on Nov 4, 2004 - 190 comments

Supreme Court Judge Hospitalized - ThyroidFilter

Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist has been hospitalized for treatment of thyroid cancer. Doctors expect to release the 80 year old chief justice later this week. Rehnquist had a tracheotomy on Sunday after being admitted to Bethesda on Friday. More coverage abounds.
posted by bshort on Oct 25, 2004 - 22 comments

A blow for freedom

The supreme court ruling that Guant?namo Bay prisoners can challenge their detention in the US is something that renews hope that America is not going down the drain. Slowly everyone understands the madness this administration wanted to drag us all in.
posted by acrobat on Jul 6, 2004 - 18 comments

Supreme Court ducks pledge question.

The Supreme Court ruled today that Michael Newdow did not have standing to sue on behalf of his daughter in challenging the recitation of the pledge in a public school classroom in California.
posted by monju_bosatsu on Jun 14, 2004 - 81 comments

The Judicial Role

Justice Scalia's recusal in the Pledge case has prompted a serious debate on the judicial role. Robert Alt has suggested that the Justice's recusal carries an important warning for the Senate in confirming new judges; if the Senate requires the nominees to answer questions about their opinions on potential cases, those nominees would have to recuse themselves if those cases later indeed came before them. Matthew Franck, on the other hand, suggests "this argument ... permits the requirements of judicial ethics — and even a terribly broad reading of them — to trump the constitutional obligation of senators to inform themselves adequately about the kinds of judges they are being asked to confirm." [more inside]
posted by monju_bosatsu on Oct 22, 2003 - 11 comments

SCOTUS goes gay

Supreme Court wisely rules that you can't legislate morality and that privacy between consenting adults is a-ok as the Texas sodomy law (that applies to homosexuals only) is struck down. Ruling invalidates other remaining sodomy laws on the books. Dancing in the streets ensues. And as usual, Scalia gets to add his wisecracks in the dissent. [via SCOTUSblog]
posted by mathowie on Jun 26, 2003 - 142 comments

SCOTUS Split

A split decision from SCOTUS on Affirmative Action -- in cases specifically involving the University of Michigan, the court rules that the law school's AA standard is legal while the undergraduate standard is not. The University president is spinning this as a full out victory because the court has now "given a roadmap" for how Affirmative Action programs can be designed for higher education nationwide. While polls show that Americans want diversity in education but are unsure about Affirmative Action, it doesn't look like it's going away any time soon. And the fundamental question remains: when it comes to education, is being a racial minority four times more important than having held a position of national leadership? Twenty times more important than writing an outstanding admissions essay?
posted by Dreama on Jun 23, 2003 - 70 comments

Ronald Dworking on affirmative action.

Ronald Dworkin on affirmative action at the University of Michigan and in the Supreme Court.
posted by monju_bosatsu on May 6, 2003 - 17 comments

civil disobedience

National Organization for Women v. Scheidler Is being heard by SCOTUS today. The case may decide whether non-violent civil disobedience can be prosecuted under federal RICO laws. Here's the ACLU's amicus brief. And comments from NRO's Rod Dreher.
posted by Ty Webb on Dec 4, 2002 - 26 comments

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