on Jun 8, 2010 at 10:11 am
For all round-up coverage of Elena Kagan since her nomination, see ourÂ collection of past links on SCOTUSwiki. Â Staff picks are marked by asterisks.
Commentators again took a break from nomination coverage as the Court issued three opinions â€“ and a rare certified question â€“ on Monday morning.Â Marcia Coyle at the BLT reports on the dayâ€™s proceedings, noting that though perhaps â€œnone of the three rulingsâ€¦is likely to make front page news, they answer questions of practical significance to litigators.â€
At the Sentencing Law Blog, Douglas Berman discusses the â€œfascinating sentencing dog that did not end up barkingâ€ in Mondayâ€™s Barber v. Thomas opinion.Â Berman describes the votes by Justices Sotomayor â€“ who voted in favor of the government â€“ and Kennedy â€“ who voted in favor of the defendant â€“ as particularly â€œnoteworthy.â€Â At CNN, Bill Mears has coverage of the decision in Krupski v. Costa Crociere, noting that in announcing the decision from the bench Justice Sotomayor had to make a good-natured appeal for help from her Italian-American colleague, Justice Scalia, to pronounce the respondentâ€™s name.Â Kevin Russell of SCOTUSblog and Gene Sloan of USA Today also cover the Courtâ€™s decision in the case.
Also at the Sentencing Law Blog, Berman examines the question that the Court certified to the Montana Supreme Court in United States v. Juvenile Male; Lyle Denniston of SCOTUSblog also covers the Courtâ€™s unusual order.Â Berman expresses surprise that the Court â€œdusted offâ€ this little-used procedure and concludes that â€œthe early Roberts Court is alreadyâ€¦a lot more interesting and unpredictable than was the late Rehnquist Court.â€ And in a separate post, Berman concludes that the Courtâ€™s action is indicative of the justicesâ€™ â€œcontinued concern with at least some aspects ofâ€¦federal SORNA provisions.â€
Also at SCOTUSblog, Lyle Denniston summarizes the briefs filed by both sides in the ongoing dispute over the dissemination of public funds for political campaigns in Arizona, McComish v. Bennett. As Denniston noted in an afternoon update, the challenges to the election scheme filed their reply brief on Monday afternoon, thereby allowing the Court to act at any time on the request to withhold subsidy funds.Â In its coverage, the ACS Blog notes that â€œpublic financing systems like Arizonaâ€™s [are] one way to counter the enormous flow of corporate dollars into elections followingâ€¦Citizens United v. FEC.â€
At the School Law Blog at Education Week (via How Appealing), Mark Walsh covers the Courtâ€™s denial of cert. in Pontiac School District v.Â Duncan.Â Walsh notes that then-Solicitor General Kagan filed a brief in May in which she urged the Court to deny certiorari.Â Greg Stohr of Bloomberg also has coverage.Â Meanwhile, Ben Conery of the Washington Times, Pete Williams of MSNBC, and the AP all cover Mondayâ€™s denial of cert. in Rodearmel v. Clinton.
Awaiting the Courtâ€™s opinion in McDonald v. Chicago, the editorial board at the Chicago Tribune â€“ anticipating a decision in favor of the petitioners â€“ urges the City to adopt â€œsome new and sensible legislatingâ€ to protect its citizens from gun violence.Â At the Huffington Post, Lonna Saunders examines the possibility that the Court in McDonald could both incorporate the Second Amendment as to the states and uphold Chicagoâ€™s gun ordinance in its eventual opinion.
In nomination news, at Politico, Manu Raju and Glenn Thrush examine how the Kagan nomination has managed to avoid significant controversy thus far, noting that Republican senators â€œhave found littleâ€¦to make a major fuss aboutâ€ as they focus on other issues of national importance.Â Though the authors acknowledge that this could change pending review of the recently released documents from her years in the Clinton administration, they conclude that Kagan is â€œnot likely to face a major fight.â€Â At Forbes, Victoria Pynchon echoes earlier reports that the first set of these documents are indicative of Kaganâ€™s â€œpragmatic mindsetâ€ and her â€œwillingness to negotiate across partisan and ideological lines.â€ And at the New Yorker, Hendrik Hertzberg conducts a lengthy review of Kaganâ€™s much-discussed undergraduate thesis, which he calls a â€œremarkable accomplishmentâ€ and a â€œpolitically sophisticatedâ€ work.Â Hertzberg also concludes that the thesis is not evidence that Kagan is a socialist, as some have suggested, but instead merely shows that she â€œhad some sympathy for the main impulses that motivated most of the American socialists of a century ago.â€
On Capitol Hill, John Stanton of Roll Call reports on Senator Leahyâ€™s comments on Monday, in which he accused Republican senators of imposing a â€œjudicial litmus testâ€ and demanding â€œjustices who will guarantee the results they want.â€Â J. Taylor Rushing of The Hill also has coverage of the senatorâ€™s comments and notes his conclusion that most Republican senators will vote against Kaganâ€™s confirmation.
Finally, at the Washington Post, Brett Zongker reports on the Kennedy Center showing of the one-man play, â€œThurgood.â€Â Zongker calls the Washington debut of the play, which stars Laurence Fishburne and earned a Tony Award during its 2008 run on Broadway, a â€œhugely symbolic event.â€Â Sophie Gilbert of the Washingtonian and Barbara MacKay of the Washington Examiner also review the play positively.
- Ashby Jones of the WSJ Law Blog previews the Termâ€™s last few weeks as Court-watchers continue to await opinions in Bilski v. Kappos, McDonald, and the three â€œhonest servicesâ€ fraud cases argued this Term.
- At the Kansas City Star, Mary Sanchez applauds Justice Sotomayorâ€™s â€œscathingâ€ dissent in Berghuis v. Thompkins as a â€œwarning flareâ€ against what Sanchez calls â€œa series of High Court rulingsâ€¦that have effectively nipped away at the Miranda ruling.â€
- In an opinion piece at the Christian Science Monitor, David Rose concludes a discussion of legal philosophy by urging senators to ask Kagan about judges using their position to â€œadvance social justiceâ€¦from the bench.â€
- Louis Sahagun of the L.A. Times reports on the next steps in California after the Court denied cert. in City of Los Angeles v. County of Kern.
- Finally, in the spirit of the upcoming World Cup, Gerard Magliocca at Concurring Opinions ponders the ways in which the role of a Supreme Court justice might be more akin to that of a soccer referee than to a baseball umpire.