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Kennedy Round-Up

Even with today’s big decision, we wanted to round up some of the articles and blog posts about yesterday’s decision in Kennedy v. Louisiana.  Stay tuned for another round-up in Heller.

This morning’s papers included a good deal of coverage of  yesterday’s decision in Kennedy v. Louisiana. Linda Greenhouse’s piece for the New York Times is available here. Robert Barnes reports on the case for the Washington Post.  Mark H. Anderson’s piece for the Wall Street Journal and James Oliphant’s for the Chicago Tribune are available here and here. Nina Totenberg’s NPR segment, “High Court Rejects Death Penalty for Child Rape,” is available here, as is Tony Mauro’s Legal Times piece here. Finally, Joan Biskupic writes for the USA Today that Wednesday’s decision “bolsters” the Court’s recent pattern of limiting capital punishment.

The NY Times’ op-ed page today features an editorial headlined “Anger and Restraint,” praising Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion for its “proper and welcome skepticism about the death penalty.” The LA Times too lauds yesterday’s decision. USA Today’s editors comment that concurrent with the court’s “steady narrowing of capital punishment’s reach,” is the growing number of states in which life in prison without parole is an available sentencing option.

Slate’s “Supreme Court Breakfast Table” features Dahlia Lithwick’s objection to the decision’s paternalistic language and Cliff Sloan’s response to her.

Corey Rayburn Yung’s Sex Crimes blog has three substantial posts discussing yesterday’s decision: the Majority Opinion, Alito’s Dissent, and An Assessment of the Opinions. Doug Berman’s post at his Sentencing Law and Policy blog is entitled “Culture of Life Trumps Democracy and State Experimentation in Kennedy.” Kent Scheidegger’s comments for Crime & Consequences can be accessed here. Ed Whelan’s post for the NRO’s Bench Memos describes the majority opinion as “36 pages of insufferable blather.” Convictions blogger Eric Posner discusses the notion of an evolving national consensus as it relates to the Kennedy decision.