Yesterday the Court returned from a short recess for the April sitting. It heard oral arguments for the second time in Johnson v. United States, in which it had asked the parties to brief the additional question whether the residual clause of the Armed Career Criminal Act is unconstitutionally vague. Jess Bravin covered that argument for The Wall Street Journal, with commentary coming from Richard Re and Carissa Hessick at PrawfsBlawg. Leah Litman discusses the case at the Columbia Law Review’s Sidebar, while at ISCOTUSnow Edward Lee predicts the winner of the oral argument based on the number of questions for each side. Continue reading »
The petition of the day is:
Issue: (1) Whether courts should defer to published Board of Immigration Appeals case law construing the generic crime of “sexual abuse of a minor” through an ad hoc process that employs a federal civil statute as a “guide;” and (2) whether a state misdemeanor offense for sexual intercourse with an individual under the age of 18 – which captures activity not criminalized federally or in the vast majority of states, and may be punished with unsupervised probation – is an “aggravated felony” as “sexual abuse of a minor.”
When the Court convenes on April 28 to hear oral arguments in the challenges to state bans on same-sex marriage, many of the reporters covering the hearing will be at the Court for the first time. This guide to covering the Court is intended for those reporters. Continue reading »
SCOTUSblog is now accepting applications from current law students interested in interning with us. Details about the position’s qualifications and responsibilities, as well as how to apply, are below the jump. Continue reading »
The Supreme Court refused on Monday to spare the federal government from a newly imposed duty to use competitive bidding to sign up partners to provide affordable subsidized housing for low-income families — the so-called “Section 8″ program that has existed since 1974. That denial came as part of a series of newly released orders; the Court did not grant review of any new cases.
Since the Section 8 program was set up, federal housing officials have recruited partners — usually, local government housing authorities — by offering them a negotiated agreement on the terms of their arrangement. But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has now ordered the Department of Housing and Urban Development to use the more complex and tightly restricted competitive bidding process instead.
Taking the issue on to the Supreme Court, HUD argued that having to proceed through the bidding process will take away much of its flexibility, and will require it to stage frequent competitions in order to satisfy the procurement contract process. Continue reading »
Coverage and commentary continue to focus on the upcoming oral arguments in the challenges to state bans on same-sex marriage. Writing for this blog, Lyle Denniston completed his series of posts previewing the oral arguments with a post on the amicus briefs supporting the states in the case. In the Supreme Court Brief (subscription required), Marcia Coyle reports that, “[f]rom the personal to the legal to the religious, opponents of same-sex marriage offer the U.S. Supreme Court a potpourri of arguments in support of their belief that the court should uphold state bans.” At The Daily Signal, Gene Schaerr contends that abortion and same-sex marriage “are closely linked in a short and simple causal chain that the Supreme Court would be wise not to set in motion.” Continue reading »
On Monday the Court issued orders from its April 17 Conference, which Lyle reported on. On Tuesday the Court issued decisions in Rodriguez v. United States and Oneok v. Learjet. On Wednesday the Court issued its decision in United States v. Wong.
This is the first week of the April sitting.
This is the final post in a four-part series on the written arguments that have been filed in the same-sex marriage cases at the Supreme Court. This post covers the briefs filed by individuals and organizations supporting the states’ authority to control the definition of marriage, and, in particular, to prohibit same-sex marriage. The first three articles in this series covered the briefs filed by the challengers, by the four states defending their bans, and by the amici supporting the challengers, including the federal government.
Taken as a whole, the sixty-six legal briefs filed in defense of the four states’ bans on same-sex marriage show evident signs of trying mainly to satisfy Justice Anthony M. Kennedy. There is a studied effort among many of these amici not to disparage the gains that the gay rights community has made in the law, gains that usually have come from Kennedy’s singular influence, while at the same time foreseeing a dire future for traditional opposite-sex marriage and to state sovereignty if the institution is opened by judicial decree to gays and lesbians.
The petition of the day is:
Issue: Whether there is a Fourteenth Amendment substantive due process right to avoid a prolonged pretrial detention caused by a police officer's failure to disclose evidence that is “strongly indicative of innocence”; or, where there has been no trial and conviction, and thus no violation under Brady v. Maryland, whether pretrial deprivations of liberty are governed by the Fourth Amendment.