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Tuesday round-up

Yesterday’s Court news was dominated by coverage of the order list and the cases in which the Court denied certiorari. Over a dissent from Justices Thomas and Scalia, the Court denied review in Alderman v. United States, a Commerce Clause challenge to a federal law that prohibits convicted felons from owning body armor. Bloomberg and the Associated Press have coverage, as do Courthouse News Service, the ABA Journal, and Lyle Denniston. At Crime and Consequences, Kent Scheidegger suggests that the statute’s requirement that the body armor have moved in interstate commerce is a “very tenuous hook” under the Court’s recent decisions in United States v. Lopez and United States v. Morrison. And at the Volokh Conspiracy, John Elwood notes that the denial (and the dissent therefrom) came after Alderman had been relisted seven times.

Some news coverage focused on what the denial and dissent in Alderman might mean for pending court challenges to health care reform. David G. Savage of the Los Angeles Times explains that the denial may indicate that the Court “may not be so anxious to rein in Congress’ broad power.” At Christian Science Monitor, Warren Richey similarly interprets the denial as possibly “portend[ing] a Supreme Court retreat from what was once called the federalism revolution.” At the WSJ Law Blog, Jess Bravin observes that it’s “still an open question whether the chief justice is sympathetic to the criticism of federal powers embodied in the challenge to the health law” in. And both ACSblog and Reason attempt to read the tea leaves of the dissent.

The Court also denied review of a petition filed by “birther” Orly Taitz, who sought to overturn the $20,000 penalty imposed on her by a federal judge for filing a frivolous lawsuit.  Agence France-Presse has coverage, as do the ABA Journal and Courthouse News Service.  The Supreme Court also denied review of a petition filed by several major music labels, thus refusing to block a suit that accuses them of conspiring to fix Internet song prices. Greg Stohr of Bloomberg details the background of that case, Sony Music v. Starr, as do Reuters and CNET.

The Court also issued a per curiam opinion in one case that had been pending on the merits, Madison County, New York v. Oneida Indian Nation. The Court vacated the judgment below and remanded the case to the Second Circuit for that court to consider changes in tribal law.  The Oneida Dispatch and the Utica Observer-Dispatch both have coverage of the decision.

Yesterday the Court also heard oral arguments in two cases, Montana v. Wyoming and Matrixx Initiatives v. Siracusano. JURIST offers a brief recap of both cases. The Associated Press (via Los Angeles Times) reports that several Justices indicated that “they didn’t immediately see an equitable solution” to the water dispute in Montana v. Wyoming, while Legal News Line has a detailed discussion of the issues and interests in the case. The Washington Post, New York Times, and Bloomberg all have coverage of Matrixx, in which the Court is considering when a company must disclose information that might cause a stockholder to reconsider her investment. The Wall Street Journal highlights the Justices’ concern over legal arguments on both sides, including arguments that only “statistically significant” information should be disclosed.

And finally, this morning the Court will hear oral argument in Goodyear Luxembourg Tires v. Brown and J. McIntyre Machinery Ltd. v. Nicastro, which involve the boundaries of general and specific personal jurisdiction, respectively. Andy Zahn of Stanford Law School previewed both cases for this blog. The Court is also expected to release at least one decision, which will be covered in a live-blog on this site starting at 10:00 a.m.


-          In the Atlantic Wire, Max Fisher discusses a potential problem for originalists on the Court:  how to deal with “issues that simply didn’t exist in the 18th century.”

-          At his Jost on Justice blog, Ken Jost looks at the Constitution and the Federalist Papers and concludes that “the Constitution is hardly the limited-government blueprint that modern-day conservatives picture.”

-          In his Sidebar column for the New York Times, Adam Liptak reports on a pending petition that challenges whether Virginia can apply its general sodomy law to regulate cases involving minors.

Recommended Citation: Nabiha Syed, Tuesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jan. 11, 2011, 10:10 AM),