On Monday, the Court denied cert., without public dissent, in Virginia v. Sebelius, 10-1014, Virginia's petition for cert. before judgment by the Fourth Circuit in its challenge to the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, which the Court had relisted after the April 15 conference.  The Court also denied cert. in Jones v. Keller, 10-804, previously relisted after the same conference.

The Court relisted for the first time in several new cases:  M.B.Z. v. Clinton, 10-699, which was featured in last week's Petitions to Watch; and Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights v. City and County of San Francisco, 10-1034, which involves an Establishment Clause challenge to a resolution by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors urging Cardinal William Joseph Levada to withdraw his directive that Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of San Francisco stop placing children in need of adoption with same-sex couples.  The Court also relisted for the first time in two pro se habeas cases in which it previously called for a response:  Winn v. Buss, 10-7867, and Aviles v. Medina, 10-8003, for which we haven't yet been able to obtain the briefs; and in Smith v. Bell, 10-8629, a Sixth Circuit capital case involving ineffective assistance of counsel and Brady claims.  The Court relisted for a second time in Khadr v. Obama, 10-751, perhaps suggesting a forthcoming statement regarding, or dissent from, the denial of certiorari similar to Justice Breyer's statement last week in Kiyemba v. Obama, 10-751; and in Bobby v. Mitts, 10-1000, the capital case mentioned in last week's post, for which a summary reversal may be in the works now that the record has arrived.  Finally, the Court relisted for a third time in Reynolds v. Thomas, 10-7502.

The Court appears to be holding Pacific Bell Telephone Co. v. California Public Utilities Commission, 10-838, for Talk America, Inc. v Michigan Bell Telephone Co., 10-313 and Isiogu v. Michigan Bell Telephone Co., 10-329, which present the same question and were argued on March 30.

If a case has been relisted once, it generally means that the Court is paying close attention to the case, and the chances of a grant are higher than for an average case.  But once a case has been relisted more than twice, it is generally no longer a likely candidate for plenary review, and is more likely to result in a summary reversal or a dissent from the denial of cert.

 


Title: M.B.Z. v. Clinton (relisted after the 4/22 Conference)

Docket: 10-699

Issue(s): Whether the "political question doctrine" deprives a federal court of jurisdiction to enforce a federal statute that explicitly directs the Secretary of State how to record the birthplace of an American citizen on a Consular Report of Birth Abroad and on a passport.

 

Certiorari stage documents:


Title: Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights v. City and County of San Francisco (relisted after the 4/22 Conference)

Docket: 10-1034

Issue(s): Whether the Court should review the judgment of the en banc Ninth Circuit affirming, in a fractured opinion, the dismissal of an Establishment Clause challenge to a resolution by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors urging Cardinal William Joseph Levada to withdraw a directive that Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of San Francisco stop placing children in need of adoption with same-sex couples.

 

Certiorari stage documents:


Title: Smith v. Bell (relisted after the 4/22 Conference)

Docket: 10-8629

Issue(s): (1) Whether the prosecution violated Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963), by withholding exculpatory evidence about testimony by the prosecution's key witness? (2) Whether instructing a jury to convict if it reaches a mere "satisfactory conclusion" or "moral certainty" of guilt, while allowing jurors to convict "as you think justice and truth dictate," violates due process?  (3) Whether "cause" exists for failing to present an ineffective assistance claim in state court, where such a claim may first be raised in postconviction proceedings, and state-appointed postconviction counsel failed to raise a claim implicating actual innocence?

 

Certiorari stage documents:


Title: Bobby v. Mitts (Relisted after the 4/15 and 4/22 Conferences)
Docket: 10-1000
Issue(s): (1) Whether the State of Ohio offends due process by using the same penalty-phase jury instruction affirmed by this Court in Smith v. Spisak (2010); and (2) whether clearly established federal law extends the holding of Beck v. Alabama (1980) to the penalty phase of a capital trial.

 

Certiorari stage documents:


Title: Khadr v. Obama (Relisted after the 4/15 and 4/22 Conferences)
Docket: 10-751
Issue(s): (1) Whether a district court considering a habeas corpus petition may give conclusive effect to the government's assertion that the individual is unlikely to be tortured if transferred to another country?  (2)  Whether Section 242(a)(4) of the Immigration and Naturalization Act bars judicial review of claims under the United Nations Convention Against Torture and Other Forms of Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment except in appeals from final orders of deportation, and if so construed, whether Section 242(a)(4) violates the Equal Protection Clause or the Suspension Clause.

 

Certiorari stage documents:

  • Opinion below (D.C. Circuit)
  • Petition for certiorari
  • Brief in opposition
  • Petitioner's reply

Title: Reynolds v. Thomas, Warden (Relisted after the 4/1, 4/15, and 4/22 Conferences)

Docket:  10-7502

Issue(s): Whether, under 18 U.S.C. §§ 3584(a), 3585(b), and 3621(b), the Bureau of Prisons must administer the sentence of a federal prisoner in a manner that effectuates the subsequent judgment of the state judiciary that the state sentence run concurrently with the previously imposed federal term of imprisonment?

 

Certiorari stage documents:

Posted in Cases in the Pipeline

Recommended Citation: John Elwood, Re-list (and hold) watch, SCOTUSblog (Apr. 26, 2011, 2:13 PM), http://www.scotusblog.com/2011/04/re-list-and-hold-watch-4/