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Monday round-up


  • At his eponymous blog, Lyle Denniston reports that two “major new appeals to the Supreme Court, raising fundamental issues about the government’s power to use Guantanamo military courts to try war crimes, have been bogged down for weeks in difficulties over getting security clearance for documents in one of the cases,” but have now appeared on the court’s docket.
  • At BuzzFeed News, Zoe Tillman reports that “[f]ive people who disrupted proceedings at the US Supreme Court to protest the Citizens United decision pleaded guilty on Thursday to two misdemeanor charges, one month after losing a constitutional challenge to part of the case.”
  • In The Atlantic, James Hamblin observes that McWilliams v. Dunn, in which the court will decide whether a defendant in a capital case whose mental health was at issue was entitled to assistance from a psychiatrist independent of the prosecution, raises the question whether “mental health [is] to be understood and approached in the same way as other areas of medicine.”

  • In The Hollywood Reporter, Eriq Garner reports that last week, “the Acting Solicitor General advised the U.S. Supreme Court that even though a lower appeals court made a ‘significant legal error’ in a dispute over a YouTube clip of a toddler dancing to Prince’s 1984 hit, ‘Let’s Go Crazy,’ the high court should pass” on reviewing the case.
  • Fix the Court urges “the justices who own shares of publicly traded mobile technology firms to sell them before their May 11 conference,” at which they will “consider petitions in several third-party doctrine cases related to cell phone records.”
  • At the Election Law Blog, Rick Pildes looks at the issues at stake in the court’s second major racial redistricting case this term, Cooper v. Harris, noting that the issues with “the broadest legal significance” involve whether the Voting Rights Act “requires creating majority-minority districts, even when districts with interracial coalitions are effectively electing candidates of choice of minority voters without minority voters needing to constitute a majority.”
  • At Jost on Justice, Ken Jost looks at Bank of America Corp. v. City of Miami, in which the justices ruled last week that cities can bring suits alleging discrimination under the Fair Housing Act, but must prove direct injury from the discrimination, arguing that it “is a measure of the court’s retreat on racial justice that the justices reaffirmed a 7-2 decision only by a narrower 5-3 vote and only with an 8-0 burden of proof ruling casting some doubt on the city’s eventual claims.”
  • The British Journal of American Legal Studies has published a special issue providing a range of domestic and international perspectives on the jurisprudence of Justice Antonin Scalia.

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Monday round-up, SCOTUSblog (May. 8, 2017, 7:05 AM),