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Tuesday round-up

Yesterday the Court denied certiorari in Baldwin v. Sebelius (10-369), a challenge to the new health-care reform law.  Although the denial of certiorari had been widely expected because the petitioners were asking the Court to grant review before a federal appeals court had ruled on the issue, the denial was nonetheless noteworthy insofar as no Justice recused him- or herself from the decision – suggesting that Elena Kagan, who was the Solicitor General when the legislation was passed, would participate if (as expected) a subsequent challenge to the law does reach the Court.  The Associated Press and the Wall Street Journal note that Justice Thomas – whose wife is the head of an advocacy group that opposes the law – also voted on the case.  The Washington Post, Financial Times (registration required), CNN, Courthouse News Service, and USAToday all have more coverage. Lyle Denniston of this blog provided in-depth analysis of the issues in Baldwin last month.

The Court also heard oral argument yesterday in two cases. In Costco v. Omega, the Court considered whether the first-sale doctrine applies to goods both made and sold outside the United States.  Courthouse News Service highlights key quotes from the Justices during oral arguments, especially criticisms that both sides were reading “outside the text.” Bloomberg and the Associated Press note that the case could have widespread implications for other discount sellers – such as Target, eBay, and Amazon – and could even affect the lending of library books. The Seattle Times, CNN, DailyFinance, and Ryan Vacca of Akron Law Cafe also have coverage.

In the other oral argument yesterday, Mayo Foundation v. United States, the Court considered whether medical residents fall under a Social Security tax exemption for student employees. Adam Liptak of the New York Times recaps the oral argument, while the Associated Press, UPI, and the Wall Street Journal also have coverage of the case.

As Lyle reported yesterday, the Court issued a summary reversal in Wilson v. Corcoran, reaffirming that lower federal courts must find a violation of federal law before ruling in favor of a state prisoner’s habeas challenge. Crime and Consequences gives a brief overview of the case.  As the Associated Press reports, the Court also denied review in a case involving the National Football League and whether a case implicating the terms of a labor contract must be tried only under federal law, regardless of whether the case raises state law issues. The Associated Press also reports on the Court’s denial of certiorari in a case in an Arizona case involving a new sentencing hearing in a death penalty case. Sarah Warbelow of HRC Back Story recounts the Court’s decision not to hear – for the fifth time – a custody case involving a child born to a lesbian couple in Vermont; Yahoo News provides a very concise overview.

Today, the Court will hear AT&T Mobility Services v. Concepcion, which presents the question whether the Federal Arbitration Act bans states from requiring that class arbitration be available as part of every arbitration agreement. Depending on the outcome of the case, Ashby Jones of the WSJ Law Blog wonders if “class-action lawsuits [are] going the way of the Dodo.” Nina Totenberg of NPR outlines the issues (as well as the stakes) in the case, while Charles Moore, in a guest commentary at the Washington Legal Foundation’s The Legal Pulse, offers meticulous insight into the legal issues. The Philadelphia Inquirer, PointofLaw, Cleveland Plain Dealer, and Lisa Gilbert at the Huffington Post weigh in as well.

Today the Court will also hear oral argument in Cullen v. Pinholster, which considers questions regarding the role of new evidence in federal habeas proceedings. Habeas Corpus Blog provides the second installation of a two-part Pinholster preview, focusing on the State’s brief (part one available here).  Stanford’s Matthew Seligman previewed the case for the blog as well.  And tomorrow the Court will hear oral argument in Flores-Villar v. United States, which challenges gender-based residency requirements for transmitting U.S. citizenship. Joanna Grossman, writing for FindLaw, previews the case and discusses some of the case law that may be most relevant to the Court’s decision. At ACSblog, Sandra S. Park argues that the case “presents an opportunity for the Court to clarify that heightened scrutiny is the standard that applies in all sex discrimination cases.”


Recommended Citation: Nabiha Syed, Tuesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Nov. 9, 2010, 11:15 AM),