on Mar 8, 2010 at 9:29 am
Not surprisingly, coverage of last weekâ€™s oral argument inÂ McDonald v. City of Chicago, the challenge to Chicago’s handgun ban, continues. Â At ACSblog, David H. GansÂ opines that Alan Gura, who represented McDonald, made the â€œright decisionâ€ when he urged the Court to rely on the Privileges or Immunities Clause, notwithstanding that the argument received a â€œchilly receptionâ€ from the Court. Â George Will of theÂ Washington Post also supports a restoration of the Privileges or Immunities clause, which in his view would provide â€œuseful protection against the statism of the states.â€
Writing atÂ Law.com, Calvin Johnson urges the Court to eschew secondary histories in favor of digital searches of the â€œsurviving documents from the adoption of the Constitution.â€Â In theÂ McDonald case, Johnson contends, the digital archives support Chicagoâ€™s arguments in favor of the handgun ban. And the Columbus Dispatch hasÂ this editorial supporting local and state gun regulations.
The Court also heard argument last week inÂ Samantar v. Yousuf. Â Chimene Keitner at Opinio Juris predicts that the outcome of the case will likely hinge on whether the Court concludes that Congress was â€œaddressing a significant but narrow problemâ€ when it enacted the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act in 1976 and simply did not address the immunity of current or former officials, or whether the Court instead â€œfeels compelledâ€ to rule on the individual immunity issue â€œwithout anyÂ statutory guidance.â€ Â [Disclosure:Â Akin Gump and Howe & Russell represented the respondents in the case.]
- John Yoo, the Justice Department lawyer who authored memos authorizing simulated drowning, was a clerk for Justice Thomas; David Savage of theÂ Los Angeles Times observes that their similar stances on cruel and unusual punishment â€œrepresent[ ] a strain of conservative thinking that looks back in history to define cruelty and torture.â€
- Michael Doyle ofÂ McClatchy Newspapers reports that the Court’s opinion inÂ Maryland v. Shatzer will likely make it easier to prosecute Ingmar Guandique, who is accused of killing congressional intern Chandra Levy.
- In the Washington Post, Robert BarnesÂ explores the possibility that President Obama would feel compelled to nominate a Protestant to the Court if Justice John Paul Stevens were to retire, leaving the Court with six Catholic and two Jewish Justices.
- Last week, the Australian Federal Court released a decision inÂ Habib v. Commonwealth of Australia which quoted extensively from three United States Supreme Court cases that examined similar issues, reports Evan Criddle ofÂ PrawfsBlawg.
- The Center for Competitive Politics recently released a poll onÂ Citizens United, andÂ The Foundry reports.