At its November 2, 2012 Conference, the Court will consider such issues as the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the scope of Constitution’s Treaty Power, and the interaction between the Federal Arbitration Act and state law.

This edition of “Petitions to watch” features petitions raising issues that Tom has determined to have a reasonable chance of being granted, although we post them here without consideration of whether they present appropriate vehicles in which to decide those issues.

Delling v. Idaho

Note: Goldstein & Russell, P.C., whose attorneys work for or contribute to this blog in various capacities, is among the counsel to the petitioner in this case, which is listed without regard to the likelihood that it will be granted.
Docket: 11-1515
Issue(s): Whether the Fourteenth or Eighth Amendment mandates the availability of an insanity defense in criminal cases, an issue this Court reserved in Clark v. Arizona, footnote 20.

Certiorari stage documents:

Nitro-Lift Technologies, L.L.C. v. Howard

Docket: 11-1377
Issue(s): Whether the Supreme Court of Oklahoma’s holding that a state court may review an underlying employment agreement based upon a state statute restricting covenants not to compete, notwithstanding the presence of a valid arbitration clause, is foreclosed by the Federal Arbitration Act and forty-five years of authority from this Court (particularly Buckeye Check Cashing v. Cardegna).

Certiorari stage documents:

Nix v. Holder

Docket: 12-81
Issue(s): (1) Whether the 2006 version of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 exceeds Congress’ enforcement powers under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments given that: (a) Congress retained a three-decade-old formula for selecting the jurisdictions that will be covered by the preclearance procedure; and (b) Congress significantly expanded the substantive standard for denying preclearance by abrogating two of the Court’s decisions that had narrowly construed it; (2) whether the Justice Department mooted petitioners’ appeal when it unilaterally purported to “reconsider” and “withdraw” the particular preclearance objection that was injuring petitioners, but failed to demonstrate that Section 5 could not reasonably be expected to injure petitioners in the future.

Certiorari stage documents:

Shelby County v. Holder (Granted )

Note: Goldstein & Russell, P.C., whose attorneys work for or contribute to this blog in various capacities, is among the counsel to Representative F. James Sensenbrenner et al., who filed an amicus brief in support of the respondent in this case.
Docket: 12-96
Issue(s): Whether Congress’ decision in 2006 to reauthorize Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act under the pre-existing coverage formula of Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act exceeded its authority under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and thus violated the Tenth Amendment and Article IV of the United States Constitution.

Certiorari stage documents:

BG Group PLC v. Republic of Argentina (Granted )

Note: Goldstein & Russell, P.C., whose attorneys contribute to this blog in various capacities, serves as counsel to the petitioner in this case.
Docket: 12-138
Issue(s): Whether, in disputes involving a multi-staged dispute resolution process, a court or the arbitrator determines whether a precondition to arbitration has been satisfied.

Certiorari stage documents:

Bond v. United States (Granted )

Docket: 12-158
Issue(s): (1) Whether the Constitution’s structural limits on federal authority impose any constraints on the scope of Congress’ authority to enact legislation to implement a valid treaty, at least in circumstances where the federal statute, as applied, goes far beyond the scope of the treaty, intrudes on traditional state prerogatives, and is concededly unnecessary to satisfy the government’s treaty obligations; and (2) whether the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention Implementation Act, 18 U.S.C. § 229, can be interpreted not to reach ordinary poisoning cases, which have been adequately handled by state and local authorities since the Framing, in order to avoid the difficult constitutional questions involving the scope of and continuing vitality of this Court’s decision in Missouri v. Holland.

Certiorari stage documents:

Lefemine v. Wideman

Docket: 12-168
Issue(s): (1) Whether the Fourth Circuit erred when it rejected the rule of Buckhannon Board and Care Home, Inc. v. West Virginia Department of Health & Human Resources by holding that a plaintiff who has obtained a permanent injunction and declaratory relief on the merits of his claim has nonetheless not prevailed; and (2) whether the Fourth Circuit erred when it promulgated its new rule that the determination of whether a plaintiff has prevailed will now be subject to abuse of discretion review.

Certiorari stage documents:

 

 

Posted in Cases in the Pipeline

Recommended Citation: Ben Cheng, Petitions to watch | Conference of November 2, 2012, SCOTUSblog (Oct. 30, 2012, 2:57 PM), http://www.scotusblog.com/2012/10/petitions-to-watch-conference-of-november-2-2012/