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Monday round-up

With the Court in its summer recess, commentators continue to look back at the past Term.

At the Cockle Bur, Shon Hopwood discusses possible reasons why the number of paid petitions filed at the Court dropped for the fifth consecutive Term.  In the Los Angeles Times, Carol Williams reports on the Ninth Circuit’s record at the Court this Term, noting that the Court at times “sharply criticiz[ed]” the reasoning employed by some of that circuit’s liberal judges.  Writing for the (Riverside, Calif.) Press-Enterprise, Ben Goad reports on the possible impact of the Court’s decision in the prison overcrowding case Brown v. Plata for the state’s wilderness firefighting efforts, in which inmates can make up “as much as half the manpower assigned to a large fire.”  (Thanks to How Appealing for the link.) A post at ACSblog suggests that Janus Capital Group, Inc. v. First Derivative Traders, in which the Court ruled that investment advisors to a mutual fund cannot be sued under federal securities law for false statements made by a fund they advised, “is likely the blockbuster ruling everyone missed” in their end-of-Term assessments.

At the Washington Post’s Post Partisan blog, Charles Lane discusses the recent memoir by Jaycee Dugard, who was abducted and sexually assaulted during her eighteen-year captivity, and wonders whether her story could have swayed the outcome in Kennedy v. Louisiana, the 2008 case in which a closely divided Court held that the death penalty for child rape is unconstitutional.  Bill Otis comments on the post at Crime and Consequences, arguing that “the majority’s discernment of a national consensus against the death penalty for child rape was astounding in its disingenuity.”


  • Retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor sits for an interview with Rebecca Lowe of the International Bar Association and reveals her preferred epitaph: “Here lies a good judge.”
  • In a Philadelphia Inquirer op-ed, former Rehnquist clerk Leon DeJulius disputes the notion that the current Court is pro-business, writing that “[t]he court’s docket, workings, and decisions are much too complex to label.”

Recommended Citation: James Bickford, Monday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jul. 18, 2011, 8:35 AM),