Breaking News

Friday round-up

Today’s coverage focuses on the latest developments in the challenge to health care reform, Wednesday’s oral arguments, and the Court’s denial of cert. in Bronx Household of Faith v. New York City Board of Education.

As Lyle Denniston of this blog reported yesterday, the Court issued an order establishing a briefing schedule for the Affordable Care Act litigation.  Marcia Coyle has coverage of the order for the BLT, as does James Vicini of Reuters.

In other health care news, the debate over whether Justice Elena Kagan should recuse herself continues.  At Slate, Eric Segall – a self-described “liberal constitutional law professor. . . and loyal Democrat” – argues that, “as a matter of both principle and law, Kagan should not hear the case.” House Republicans who believe that Kagan should recuse herself have asked the Justice Department to provide Congress with documents on Kagan’s involvement with the health care law; yesterday at a hearing on Capitol Hill, Attorney General Eric Holder again told members of Congress that the Justice Department – citing separation of powers concerns – would not provide the documents.  The Washington Post’s Jerry Markon has coverage, as do Jennifer Haberkorn of Politico, Joshua Altman of The Hill, and Stephen Dinan and Dave Boyer of the Washington Times.

After Wednesday’s oral argument in Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc., the Economist discusses potential implications of the case for the biotech industry and speculates that the Court will rule narrowly on this issue. In his column for Forbes, Erik Kain uses Mayo to present the arguments against patents. TechDirt provides a summary of the oral arguments, observing that the “discussion was extremely narrowly focused on the patentability of this particular diagnostic test, with many comments suggesting that the patentability of a general diagnostic test is not even in question.” Ryan Chiromas at IPWatchDog and Jonas Anderson at PatentlyO also summarize the arguments in Mayo, while JURIST‘s Andrea Bottorff has coverage of oral argument in both Mayo and PPL Montana, LLC v. Montana.

At the Huffington Post, David Bloomfield discusses the Court’s denial of cert. in Bronx Household of Faith. Bloomfield characterizes the action as “a final judicial green light to the Department of Education’s controversial ban on renting schools for religious services.” The Houston Chronicle’s David Gibson also has coverage.


  • Ariane de Vogue of ABC News discusses the Court’s Conference today, during which the Justices are expected to consider Arizona’s cert. petition on S.B. 1070.
  • Michael F. Smith at this blog reports on Monday’s oral argument in Messerschmidt v. Millender, concluding that the argument “gave glimpses of several possible approaches the Court could take.”
  • In an op-ed for the Denver Post, Tom Bie addresses the potential implications of PPL Montana for “anyone who likes fishing, rafting or canoeing public water in the United States.”
  • At Power Line, John Hinderaker discusses the cert. petition in Georgia-Pacific West, Inc. v. Northwest Environmental Defense Center, which the Justices are scheduled to consider at today’s Conference.  He argues that if the decision below is upheld, “the EPA will be charged with regulating the runoff of uncontaminated rain water from vast areas of public and private land.”
  •’s Tom Ramstack previews Reichle v. Howards, the case involving immunity for Secret Service agents that the Court granted on Monday.  He characterizes it as “[a] case that could redefine when free speech becomes criminal behavior toward public officials.”
  • Peter Schmidt of the Chronicle of Higher Education covers the University of Texas’s brief in opposition to cert. in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin. (Lyle covered the brief in opposition for this blog on Wednesday night.)  The brief, filed Wednesday, argues that the case will soon become moot because she will graduate from college in May.

Recommended Citation: Marissa Miller, Friday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Dec. 9, 2011, 10:47 AM),