on Mar 2, 2010 at 9:45 am
NPRâ€™s Nina TotenbergÂ and Jess Bravin and Brent Kendall atÂ The Wall Street Journal recap yesterdayâ€™s oral argument inÂ Skilling v. United States.Â Bravin and Kendall note that â€“ perhaps becauseÂ Skilling is the third case this Term in which the Court has considered the â€œhonest servicesâ€ statute â€“ the justices focused more on the change-of-venue issue yesterday. Â Elsewhere, Joan Biskupic atÂ USA Today writes that Justice Breyer, among others, â€œsuggested that [the Court] did not want to second-guessâ€ the trial judge, fearing a ruling in Skillingâ€™s favor on the issue would lead to drawn-out jury selections. Mary Flood of the Houston Chronicle also has coverage of the proceedings.
In the blogosphere, Christine Hunt atÂ The Conglomerate has a â€œpost-gameâ€ analysis of the argument; in a separate post atÂ The Conglomerate, she also analyzes theÂ amicus brief filed by news organizations in opposition to Skillingâ€™s change-of-venue argument and concludes that the outrage in Houston regarding the Enron scandal was not sufficiently national in scope to eliminate the potential value of a transfer of venue. TheÂ DealBook blog of The New York Times has coverage of the oral argument, while Ashby Jones at theÂ WSJ Law Blog features a report on the argument from the Journalâ€™s Jess Bravin, who predicts a decision that instructs Congress to reshape the â€œhonest servicesâ€ law; if the Court does reverse on the jury fairness issue, Bravin speculates that it will issue a narrow ruling that does not address â€œthe broader claim that a change of venue is required whenever there is a similarly pervasive publicity about a defendant.â€
Joan Biskupic atÂ USA Today covers yesterdayâ€™s dismissal of Kiyemba v. Obama, while Adam Liptak atÂ The New York Times notes that â€œthe central issueâ€¦is likely to reach the court againâ€ because â€œother prisoners cleared for release with nowhere to goâ€ remain at Guantanamo.Â At theÂ L.A. Times, David Savage observes that the Courtâ€™s move temporarily â€œgives the [Obama] administration more time to resolve how to handle the remaining prisoners at Guantanamo.â€ Â Robert Barnes at theÂ Washington Post, Tony Mauro at theÂ BLT, and Jess Bravin of theÂ WSJ Law Blog also have coverage.Â AtÂ Balkinization, Deborah Pearlstein applauds the Courtâ€™s decision, asserting that a potential decision against the Uighurs â€œmight have cemented a permanently bad outcome for the remaining Guantanamo detaineesâ€ that have not yet been released.
In her preview of Tuesdayâ€™s scheduled oral argument inÂ McDonald v. City of Chicago, Nina Totenberg atÂ NPR predicts that a decision in favor of the petitioners will lead to a â€œtorrent of other casesâ€¦that test a huge array of existing gun regulations.â€ Warren Richey of theÂ Christian Science Monitor also has coverage, while Bill Mears’s piece atÂ CNN profiles petitioner Otis McDonald and recaps the history of the Chicago gun laws at issue. In Chicago, Fran Spielman of theÂ Chicago Sun-Times (viaÂ How Appealing) covers a pre-argument press conference with Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, who describes himself as â€œvery optimisticâ€ that the Court will uphold the handgun ban â€“ a measure that he views as necessary for the â€œsafety of our streets and our families.â€ Â Finally, Lyle Denniston atÂ SCOTUSblog reported Monday evening that the Court refused a last-minute request by broadcast networks to release the audiotape of the oral argument immediately after the argument finishes; consistent with current Court policy, the transcript will be released later on Tuesday.
Numerous editorial pages and opinion pieces weigh in on McDonald.Â TheÂ editorial board of Christian Science Monitor argues that Second Amendment rights must be viewed differently than free speech because of the serious safety threat that guns pose, and it urges the Court to issue more specific standards of review to help lower courts determine the constitutionality of firearms restrictions.Â At theÂ ACS Blog, Mark Tushnet predicts that the Court will rule in the petitionersâ€™ favor â€“ an outcome that, he opines, casts doubt on the consistency of Republican deference to federalism in other policy areas.Â The Wall Street Journalâ€™s editorial boardÂ encourages the Court to overturn the Chicago law using the â€œjudicially restrained pathâ€ of the Due Process Clause; reliance on the Privileges or Immunities Clause, the board cautions, could become a tool used to assert other â€œrightsâ€ not found in the Constitutionâ€™s text.Â And theÂ Washington Postâ€™s editorial board deems it â€œincongruous at bestâ€ to deny the rights established in Heller to those living outside of the District of Columbia but at the same time supports â€œreasonable gun-control measuresâ€ to protect public safety. And at theÂ National Law Journal, Dennis Henigan of the Brady Center urges the Court, even if it rules in the petitionersâ€™ favor, to re-affirm Hellerâ€™s requirement that â€œcourts show great deferenceâ€ to legislation that reduces gun safety risks.
- Tony Mauro at theÂ BLT reports on the â€œSupreme Court of one justiceâ€ in which Justice Sotomayor, the only justice not named as a defendant in a suit against the Court itself, acted as a “quorum of one” in dismissing a challenge to the Courtâ€™s discretionary jurisdiction.
- At theÂ Volokh Conspiracy, Orin Kerr covers yesterdayâ€™s denial of cert. inÂ McCane v. United States, a Fourth Amendment â€œgood faith exceptionâ€ case and then follows up with aÂ second post covering his take on the issue, a piece he calls â€œthe merits brief I was itching to write, offered in blog form instead.â€
- Bill Mears atÂ CNN covers the denial of cert. inÂ LFP Publishing Group v. Toffoloni, a case involving a suit against Hustler magazine.
- Jesse Holland at theÂ Associated Press has a recap of oral argument in Monday’s Miranda-rights case,Â Berghuis v. Thompkins.
- Warren Richey at theÂ Christian Science Monitor also covers the denial of cert. in Haskell County Board of Commissioners v. Green, noting that nine states had filed anÂ amicus brief in support of certiorari seeking â€œclearer guidance for public officials and lower courtsâ€ on displays of the Ten Commandments.
- AtÂ Concurring Opinions, Sherrilyn Ifill expresses disappointment at the socioeconomic disparity between former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling and other, unsuccessful due process petitioners in recent Supreme Court terms.
- Brigid Schulte at the Washington Post profiles Mohamed Ali Samantar, the petitioner in Samantar v. Youself. Â Oral argument in the case is scheduled for Wednesday.
- Finally, also at theÂ Volokh Conspiracy, Randy Barnett covers the interaction betweenÂ Dred Scott, the Fourteenth Amendment, and the Slaughter-House Cases in defining the Privileges or Immunities Clause at issue inÂ McDonald.