on Sep 30, 2010 at 10:16 am
The fourteen cases the Court added to its merits docket on Tuesday, which Lyle and Anna featured on Tuesday and Adam covered in yesterdayâ€™s round-up, continue to generate discussion. At Constitutional Law Prof Blog, Steven Schwinn deems General Dynamics Corp. v. United States (and its consolidated companion, The Boeing Co. v. United States), which involves the [Defense] Departmentâ€™s â€œinvocation of the state secrets privilege,â€ â€œone to watchâ€ insofar as it could indicate how the Court might deal with other, more sweeping assertions of the privilege â€“ in, for example, cases involving allegations of extraordinary renditions and torture.Â Sara Jerome of The Hill, Tony Mauro (for the First Amendment Center), andÂ Nathaniel Hindman of the Huffington Post discuss FCC v. AT&T, in which the Court will consider whether the privacy protections of the Freedom of Information Act apply to corporations.
In a series of pieces for CNN, Bill Mears discusses the new Court and the upcoming Term more generally. In one piece, Mears explores whether Justice Kagan will prove to â€œbe a reliable liberal,â€ while in another he discusses the changed dynamic among the Justices as the Roberts Court finishes its fifth year. Mears speculates that the replacement of Justice Stevens with Justice Kagan will result in a Court that votes even more consistently along partisan lines and that Justice Kennedyâ€™s â€œâ€˜swing justiceâ€™ positionâ€ will become â€œthat much more powerful.â€Â And in a third, he identifies and examines five â€œkey casesâ€ scheduled to be heard this term. Marcia Coyle previews the upcoming term in both a piece for the National Law Journal and an interview for PBSâ€™s Rundown blog, while Daniel Fisher of Forbesâ€™ Full Disclosure blog argues that the Term â€œis shaping up to be a bad one for plaintiff lawyers.â€
Yesterday, Senator Patrick Leahy (D., Vt.), the Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, introduced legislation that would allow retired Justices to sit by designation on the when active members are recused. Under the proposed bill, a majority of active Justices could vote to assign a retired Justice to fill in for a recused Justice in a particular case. Â WSJ Law Blogâ€™s Jess Bravin and NPRâ€™s David Gura have coverage. The recusal issue has drawn significant attention recently in light of Justice Kaganâ€™s decision to recuse herself from twenty-five cases so far this Term, as Nina Totenberg discussed with NPRâ€™s Morning Edition yesterday.Â
On Tuesday, the Senate passed the proposed Animal Crush Video Prohibition Act of 2010 â€“ a response to the Supreme Courtâ€™s decision last term in United States Â v. Stevens, the animal cruelty First Amendment case. The Act criminalizes â€œthe creation, sale, distribution, advertising, marketing, and exchange of animal crush videosâ€ and is intended to respond to the Courtâ€™s suggestion in Stevens that a narrower statute limited to animal crush videos might be constitutional. Â The BLTâ€™s Marcia Coyle, the WSJ Law Blogâ€™s Ashby Jones, and RTT News have coverage.
Finally, the blogosphere has taken notice of the cert. petition filed recently by Microsoft (which Conor McEvily posted yesterday as one of the petitions of the day). Microsoftâ€™s petition, which is supported by amicus briefs on behalf of industry giants like Google, Apple, Facebook, and Yahoo, asks the Court to decide whether the Patent Actâ€™s invalidity defense must be proved by clear and convincing evidence. Bloomberg, the Seattle PI blog, Law.comâ€™s Corporate Counsel blog, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation all have coverage.
- The Chicago Tribune reports that Justice Alito will give the Opperman Lecture in Constitutional Law today at Drake University.
- The Associated Press (via Google) provides some background on Snyder v. Phelps, the funeral protest case that the Court is scheduled to hear next Wednesday.