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Friday round-up

Yesterday afternoon the Court denied a stay of execution to Virginia inmate Jerry Terrell Jackson (discussed in yesterday morning’s round-up). Justices Ginsburg and Sotomayor indicated that they would have voted to grant the stay. Pronounced dead at 9:14 p.m. EST, Jackson was the first Virginia inmate to be executed with a three-drug mixture that includes pentobarbital. The Washington Post, the Associated Press (via NPR), the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Crime & Consequences all have coverage of the execution.


  • In a meeting with reporters at the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference, Justice Kennedy speculated that the Court’s docket for next Term is changing because “[a] lot of big civil cases are going to arbitration,” according to Trial Insider. (Thanks to Howard Bashman of How Appealing for the link.)
  • At Appellate Daily, Michelle Olsen reports on a split between the D.C. and Ninth Circuits on the scope of the legislative privilege enshrined in Article I, Section 6 of the Constitution. Olsen writes that “[t]his circuit split on an issue of nationwide importance, namely the integrity and independence of Congress, has Supreme Court watchers’ attention.”
  • In an op-ed for the Los Angeles Times, Lois Davis examines the impact of the Court’s decision last Term in the California prison overcrowding case, Brown v. Plata. Davis explains that “[t]he chief reason the court ordered a reduction in the prison population was the failure of the state to meet the basic medical needs of prisoners,” and then she wonders, “Can strapped local governments really do any better?”
  • Mike Dorf at Dorf on Law and Sarah Kliff at Ezra Klein’s Washington Post blog both speculate about the political implications of potential major rulings at the Court next Term.
  • LegalNewsline and Orin Kerr at the Volokh Conspiracy take note of a new article in the Texas Review of Law & Politics, in which Virginia’s attorney general, Ken Cuccinelli, and two other state officials explain their motivation for pursuing a constitutional challenge to the Affordable Care Act.

Recommended Citation: Adam Chandler, Friday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Aug. 19, 2011, 10:16 AM),