With the Court’s winter recess underway, commentators continue their discussion of last week’s decision in United States v. Jones, the GPS tracking case. At this blog, Tom Goldstein provides an extended analysis of why Jones is less of a pro-privacy case than many initially reported, and why the opinions “may be the result of extremely savvy tactical moves by four members of the Court.” Orin Kerr of the Volokh Conspiracy tackles the question of why Jones is subject to such diverse interpretations, concluding that the decision is “a Rorschach test.” And at the Boston Review, Pamela Karlan discusses the difficulty of applying traditional interpretations of constitutional protections to new technologies — which is why, after Jones, many are “still left wondering, how should we understand privacy in an electronic age?”

Elsewhere, commentators look forward to what may soon come before the Court. At the Los Angeles Times, David Savage considers what the Court’s recent opinion in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC – holding that ministers cannot sue their churches for violations of employment discrimination laws – may mean for lawsuits challenging a provision of the Affordable Care Act which requires church-run institutions to provide free contraceptives to students and employees. And in The American Prospect, Abby Rapoport reports on a petition for certiorari filed by the League of Women Voters that argues that gerrymandering in Illinois is an unconstitutional regulation of speech.


  •  During a keynote address at Brigham Young University, constitutional scholar Erwin Chemerinsky criticizes the Court for a “failure to communicate” with the public; the Blog of Legal Times has coverage of the speech.
  • A bill introduced in the Oklahoma state senate proposes that the Supreme Court be prohibited from reviewing the constitutionality of Oklahoma laws, the Daily O’Collegian reports.
  • The editorial board of the Christian Science Monitor compares the leadership styles of President Obama and Chief Justice Roberts – and argues that “both have had only limited success in their goals.”
  • A family emergency forces Justice Alito to cancel an appearance in West Palm Beach, according to the Palm Beach Post.
  • The Saipan Times updates its coverage of Justice Sotomayor’s visit to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (which Joshua covered yesterday).

Posted in Round-up

Recommended Citation: Nabiha Syed, Tuesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jan. 31, 2012, 9:23 AM), https://www.scotusblog.com/2012/01/tuesday-round-up-109/