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Monday round-up

Over the weekend, the press and blogosphere continued to discuss recent comments by retired Justice John Paul Stevens on the Court’s decisions – which Lyle described (and to which he linked) on Thursday.  At the Wall Street Journal Law Blog, Jess Bravin discusses how, in his remarks, Justice Stevens expressed support for two opinions by Justice Samuel Alito:  his dissent in Snyder v. Phelps and his majority opinion in NASA v. Nelson, in which the Court unanimously held that federal contractors could be subject to background checks.  Bill Mears of CNN reports on those comments, along with Justice Stevens’s criticism of the Court’s ruling in Connick v. Thompson.  Jonathan Adler of the Volokh Conspiracy and Amanda Rice of this blog and Just Enrichment both note the praise for Justice Alito; Amanda opines that “First Amendment cases… have particular potential to create strange bedfellows.”

Justice Thomas spoke to the graduating class of the University of Nebraska Law School on Saturday, as the Associated Press (via the Kansas City Star) reports.  The Lincoln Journal Star has quotes from his speech, which described the sacrifices that many have made to build the country and its legal system and included a pointed question to the graduates: “I ask each of you in all sincerity, ‘What will you do to earn what others have sacrificed to give you?'”

Ronald Dworkin has an article (subscription required) and two blog posts at the New York Review of Books.  Dworkin’s first post comments on the Court’s recent decision in Arizona Christian School Tuition Organization v. Winn; he speculates that the majority may be “engaged in an undermining process, step by step, so they can later justify overruling Flast” and its principle of taxpayer standing.  The second post takes up Arizona Free Enterprise Club PAC v. Bennett, the case involving a public financing system in which candidates for office could be given subsidies partly on the basis of their opponents’ expenditures.  Dworkin’s article addresses the same topics in greater depth.  (Thanks to Rick Hasen of the Election Law Blog for these links.)


  • At Healthwatch, The Hill’s healthcare blog, Julian Pecquet reports that on Tuesday Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal will appear before the Fourth Circuit to argue in support of the Affordable Care Act.  Katyal’s appearance, Pecquet suggests, is “a sign of how seriously the administration takes lower court proceedings in a case with huge ramifications not only for the healthcare system, but for the 2012 election.”
  • At Just Enrichment, Adam Chandler (your Wednesday rounder) comments on the Court’s changed policy regarding recordings of oral argument.  The Court now releases all recordings at the end of the week a case was argued; Adam notes that “the current delay eviscerates any news value contained in the recordings.”

Recommended Citation: James Bickford, Monday round-up, SCOTUSblog (May. 9, 2011, 9:29 AM),