Breaking News

Wednesday round-up

The Court’s announcement last week that it would review the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in United States v. Windsor and the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8 in Hollingsworth v. Perry continues to inspire coverage and commentary.

As Lyle Denniston reported for this blog, yesterday the Court appointed Harvard law professor Vicki C. Jackson to argue in Windsor that the Court lacks authority to rule on whether DOMA is constitutional.  Additional coverage of the appointment comes from Terry Baynes of Thomson Reuters and Jesse J. Holland of the Associated Press (via the Huffington Post).

At Bloomberg View, Andrew Koppelman concludes that it is hard to tell whether the Court went “too big or too small when it decided to hear cases on same-sex marriage,” while at Slate Walter Dellinger discusses how an additional question raised in Perry – “whether Prop. 8’s defenders are the proper party to bring the case to the Supreme Court” – could allow the Justices to avoid “the central gay-marriage question in the case.”  Elsewhere at Slate, John Culhane explains how “recent political successes by pronouncements of gay marriage could—paradoxically—make success harder than it might have been even a few months ago.”  At The New Republic, Jeffrey Rosen examines the role that Justice Kennedy will play in Windsor and Perry and predicts that Justice “Kennedy, joined by the four liberal justices, will decide both cases using relatively narrow approach to gay rights that he has consistently applied to strike down laws that discriminate against gays and lesbians.”  And in her column for The Washington Post, Ruth Marcus writes that “[f]or those who believe in marriage equality, the [C]ourt’s move is both exhilarating and scary.”  Additional coverage comes from Nazanin Rafsanjani at MSNBC’s “The Maddow Blog.”


  • At Crime and Consequences, Kent Scheidegger reports that the Court has denied the applications for a stay of execution and petitions for certiorari filed by a Florida serial killer.
  • At this blog’s Relist (and Hold) Watch feature, John Elwood reviews the relisted and held cases in the wake of the Court’s December 7 Conference.
  • In the wake of Justice Scalia’s recent visit to Princeton (discussed in yesterday’s round-up), the Daily Princetonian reports that prior visits by the Justice have inspired student protests.  (Thanks to Howard Bashman for the link.)

Recommended Citation: Conor McEvily, Wednesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Dec. 12, 2012, 10:10 AM),