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Friday round-up

In light of yesterday’s unanimous opinion by the First Circuit invalidating Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, all eyes have turned to the prospect that the Court will weigh in on the constitutionality of the law.  Lyle Denniston covers the First Circuit’s decision and the law’s future at the Court for this blog; other coverage comes from NPR, the New York Times, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Constitutional Law Prof Blog, the Volokh Conspiracy, the Associated Press (via Fox News), the Wall Street Journal Law Blog, The Advocate, Jezebel, the Washington Blade, Rolling Stone, the Washington Post, the ABA Journal, the National Review Online, The Hill, the Heritage Foundation, the New York Daily News, the Christian Science Monitor, The (U.K.) Guardian, CBS News, the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Jose Mercury, the Maddow Blog, the Los Angeles Times, Reuters, the Boston Herald, the Washington Times, the (U.K.) Daily Mail, and Above the Law.

The first wave of commentary on the DOMA decision has begun as well.  At the Huffington Post, Carlos A. Ball urges the Court to grant cert. in the case, arguing that “[t]he nation desperately needs guidance from the Supreme Court on the question of whether this kind of brazen differential treatment is consistent with our constitutional values of equality and fairness.”  Tara Siegel Bernard of the New York Times Bucks Blog discusses the financial and legal implications of a decision by the Court holding the law unconstitutional, but she also cautions that “a victory wouldn’t necessarily put gay couples on even footing with opposite-sex married couples.”  At the National Review Online, Ed Whelan has a mostly critical analysis of the decision, while in The New Yorker, Richard Socarides observes that the DOMA challenge may now reach the Court before the challenge to California’s Proposition 8  – “the result favored by the old guard of gay-rights litigators who prefer a more incremental strategy of Supreme Court review.”  The Week provides five takeaways from the opinion, Chris Geidner of Metro Weekly suggests that the narrowness of the First Circuit’s opinion could prove critical at the Court, and Ian Millhiser of Think Progress analyzes the First Circuit’s treatment of claims that DOMA is motivated by “hostility to homosexuality.”  The Washington Post reports on the role played by federal employees in the DOMA litigation, while the editorial board of the Boston Herald calls on the Court to restore the “balanced relationship” between states and the federal government “destroyed” by DOMA.

In other news, coverage of this week’s speech by retired Justice John Paul Stevens at the University of Arkansas in Little Rock (which Cormac covered in yesterday’s round-up) continued apace from Greg Stohr of Bloomberg Businessweek, Bill Mears of CNN, Jeremy Leaming of ACSblog, James Vicini of Reuters, and Bill Favate of the Wall Street Journal Law Blog.


  • At this blog, Kedar posted an updated Stat Pack.
  • In an op-ed at Politico, Rick Hasen comments on Citizens United and allegations of political pressure on the Chief Justice in the health care cases, observing that language “on the right” about a “liberal siege” is essentially motivated by the fact that “those with power want to wield it without being accountable for their actions.”
  • At Concurring Opinions, Gerard Magliocca discusses the possibility of a “draw” in the health care cases – if four Justices were to vote to uphold the mandate, four were to vote against it, and one were to conclude that the Anti-Tax Injunction Act prohibits the Court from reaching the merits.
  • At ACSblog, Linda Greenhouse discusses her new book about the Supreme Court.
  • In The Wall Street Journal (subscription required), Julia Angwin and Jess Bravin report on arguments made by the government in a GPS tracking case in the Ninth Circuit in light of the Court’s decision earlier this year in United States v. Jones.

Recommended Citation: Joshua Matz, Friday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jun. 1, 2012, 10:11 AM),