Breaking News

Thursday round-up

Yesterday the Court heard oral arguments in two cases, Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories and PPL Montana LLC v. Montana.  Lyle Denniston covered the oral argument for this blog in Mayo — in which the Court is considering the scope of patent rights for a method of gauging medical patients’ reaction to drug dosages — while Greg Stohr has a detailed report for Bloomberg.  Other coverage comes from Adam Liptak at the New York Times, Robert Barnes of the Washington Post, Gene Quinn at IP Watchdog, Bloomberg Businessweek, the Associated Press (via the Washington Post), Reuters, Ars Technica, and Patently-O.  Before the oral argument, the Minneapolis Star Tribune previewed the case, while Alex Philippidis analyzes the amicus filings in the case at Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News and concludes that if the Court’s recent decision in “Bilski v. Kappos is any guide, the court’s standard can be expected not to rely on the rigidity of a single test but on some combination of tests grounded in precedent and designed to advance life science innovation.”

In PPL Montana, which Thomas Merrill previewed for this blog, the Court considers what the proper test should be for determining a river’s navigability.  Bloomberg previewed the case,  as did NBC Montana, while the Associated Press (via CBS), the PBS Newshour, Greenwire, and KURL8 News of Billings, Montana all provide coverage of the oral argument.

Yesterday, the University of Texas filed its brief opposing certiorari in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, the challenge to its affirmative action policies.  Lyle reported on the filing for this blog, which Adam Chandler also discusses in a post at  Just Enrichment.

Tuesday’s oral argument in the Confrontation Clause case Williams v. Illinois  (which is also our topic in today’s Community) continues to generate discussion.   Federal Evidence Review posted both a preview and review of the case, while Garrett Epps of the Atlantic reports that the oral argument as “highlight[ed] a split in the Court’s conservative wing.”  Debra Cassens Weiss of the ABA Journal and the Associated Press (via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution) also have coverage.



  • In a recent speech in Arizona, retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor described her path to the Court.  The Yuma Sun has coverage.  (Hat tip to How Appealing for the link.)
  • The Supreme Court will publish a cookbook in honor of Martin Ginsburg.  Coverage comes from the Blog of the Legal Times.
  • In an editorial at the Fort Worth-Star Telegram, Linda P. Campbell argues that the upcoming Texas redistricting case (which Lyle analyzes here) shows that “judicial activism is in the eye of the beholder.”
  • The Associated Press (via ABC News) reports that the Eighth Circuit has agreed to an en banc review of a case challenging a law banning peaceful protests at funerals.  The law was enacted in response to protests by the Westboro Baptist Church, one of the respondents in last Term’s Snyder v. Phelps.
  • In the context of a discussion with his young daughter about the Affordable Care Act and a hypothetical law requiring everyone to eat broccoli, Mike Dorf of Dorf on Law discusses the historical distinction between prohibitions and affirmative obligations.
  • The (Fort Dodge, Iowa) Messenger reports on the testimony of Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady at Tuesday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the merits of allowing cameras in the courtroom.

Recommended Citation: Kiera Flynn, Thursday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Dec. 8, 2011, 11:31 AM),