Breaking News

Monday round-up


  • The saga of Baby Veronica, the child at the heart of the custody dispute before the Court last Term in Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl, continues to unfold.  As Lyle reported last week, a family court judge in South Carolina ordered the child’s biological father to transfer her immediately to her adoptive parents, Matt and Melanie Capobianco.  With a warrant out for his arrest, the father has left Iowa, where he had been participating in military training, and returned to Oklahoma, where he is expected to appear at an emergency tribal court hearing regarding the child today.  The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier has the latest developments.
  • Michael Kirkland of UPI reports on the case of Nidal Hasan, who is acting as his own attorney in his trial for the murder of thirteen people (and the shootings of twenty-nine more) in Fort Hood, Texas.  Surveying Supreme Court precedent on ineffective assistance of counsel, Kirkland predicts that if Hasan’s goal is to set up an ineffective assistance of counsel claim on appeal, “based on court precedent, he’s probably whistling in the wind.”
  • In the wake of the Court’s recent decision in United States v. Windsor, invalidating a provision of the federal Defense of Marriage that defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman for purposes of federal laws and programs, the Social Security Administration has amended its operating manual to address claims for benefits for same-sex couples.  As Chris Geidner reports for BuzzFeed, the SSA has limited benefits to married same-sex couples who live in a state that recognizes same-sex marriages.
  • California Governor Jerry Brown has asked the Supreme Court to step in to reverse an order by a special three-judge district court that would require the state to release nearly ten thousand inmates by the end of the year to alleviate overcrowding in California prisons.  As Lyle reported on August 2, the Court has already declined the state’s request to delay the order (which follows the Court’s 2011 decision in Brown v. Plata) pending appeal; the most recent filing – as Kent Scheidegger reports at Crime and Consequences – is the state’s actual appeal.

Recommended Citation: Amy Howe, Monday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Aug. 12, 2013, 10:44 AM),