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Wednesday round-up

More coverage relating to Monday’s ruling in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, in which the Court struck down two provisions of a Texas law regulating abortions, comes from NPR’s Nina Totenberg; David Crary of the Associated Press; and Emily Crockett, who reports for Vox on the decision’s effects on similar laws in other states.

Commentary comes from Michael Dorf, who at Verdict argues that there “is no evidence of procedural bad faith on the part of the majority”; Julia Quinn, who at If When How discusses being on the Court’s plaza when the ruling was issued on Monday; Jessica Valenti, who in The Guardian interprets the ruling as “a powerful message”; Steven Mazie, who in The Economist concludes that there were “no great surprises” in the decision; and Sarah Kliff of Vox, who contends that – despite Monday’s decision — the “abortion rights movement isn’t winning.”

Coverage relating to Monday’s decision in McDonnell v. United States, in which the Court struck down the federal corruption convictions of former Virginia governor Bob McDonnell, comes from Matt Zapotosky in The Washington Post; and Frank Green of Richmond Times-Dispatch.  Commentary comes from Robert Bauer in an op-ed for The Washington Post; Petula Dvorak, also in The Washington Post; Tim Lynch at Cato at Liberty; and Robert Weisberg at Legal Aggregate;

At The Trace, Olivia Li discusses Monday’s ruling in Voisine v. United States, in which the Court ruled that a domestic-violence conviction is a misdemeanor crime of violence for purposes of limiting access to firearms.  John Donahue weighs in at Legal Aggregate, arguing that the case helps to “show just how porous American gun laws are and what steps are needed to promote greater safety.”

Commentary on last week’s decision in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, holding that the race-conscious admissions policy in use when Abigail Fisher applied (unsuccessfully) to the university does not violate the Constitution, comes from Steven Mazie, who in The Economist suggests that the vote of Justice Anthony Kennedy with the three of the Court’s more liberal Justices “reflects an evolution, not a transformation, of his thinking about race in America.”  And More Perfect (podcast) profiles Edward Blum, the man behind (among others) Fisher’s lawsuit.

Commentary on the four-four tie in United States v. Texas, the challenge to the Obama administration’s deferred-action policy for certain undocumented immigrants, comes from Melissa Kearney, who at Medium argues that the ruling “failed millions of immigrant families”; and from Karthick Ramakrishnan and Pratheepan Gulasekaram, who in an op-ed for Los Angeles Times contend that “evidence from the last decade has shown the limits of an immigration reform strategy that is fixated on the federal government. Instead, activists should pay more attention to the states, where policy victories and political momentum are more likely.”

Coverage looking back at the Term as a whole comes from Greg Stohr for Bloomberg Politics, Robert Barnes of The Washington Post, Jess Bravin of The Wall Street Journal, Adam Liptak of The New York Times, NPR’s Nina Totenberg, and Richard Wolf of USA Today.  Commentary on the Term comes from Vox, Dana Milbank of The Washington Post, a podcast at Advice and Consent, and Katrianna Brisack at Planet Green, while Carmen Germaine of Law 360 looks at the best dissents of the Term.

Yesterday the Justices issued orders from Monday’s Conference.  Tony Mauro of The National Law Journal (subscription or registration required) reports on the denial of rehearing in the challenge to agency fees for public employees; Mauro also reports for The National Law Journal on the Court’s announcement that it will review a pair of cases involving “a dispute over alleged predatory lending practices that discriminated against minorities.”  At his Election Law Blog, Rick Hasen discusses the denial of review in a Delaware campaign finance disclosure cases, arguing that it “shows that campaign finance disclosure laws remain on strong constitutional footing. The holes in our disclosure laws are the fault of Congress, the FEC, and the IRS.”  Bill Mears of Fox News reports on another denial, in a case involving whether a private pharmacy can be forced by the state to dispense the so-called ‘morning after’ pill; Ed Mannino weighs in on the denial at his eponymous blog, arguing that there “is no doubt that this important issue of conscience rights will ultimately reach the court in a different case if, as, and when the Supreme Court again reaches its full complement of nine justices.”  And at Education Week, Mark Walsh reports on both the denial of rehearing in the union fees case and the Court’s announcement that it would review “a special education case stemming from a dispute over whether a Michigan girl with cerebral palsy was permitted to bring her service dog to school.”


  • Tony Mauro and Marcia Coyle have two stories on their interview with outgoing Solicitor General Don Verrilli in (subscription required) and Supreme Court Brief (subscription required).
  • At Immigration Prof Blog, Kevin Johnson looks ahead at two “potentially significant” immigration cases on next Term’s docket, observing that both “implicate significant doctrinal issues of immigration law that have perplexed the courts for many years.”
  • At Think Progress, Ian Millhiser looks at the role on the Court of Justice Sonia Sotomayor, describing her as “a lonely voice — often a voice speaking only for herself and no other justice — about the need for greater checks on prosecutors, prison officials and law enforcement.”

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Recommended Citation: Amy Howe, Wednesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jun. 29, 2016, 3:36 PM),