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Wednesday round-up

Yesterday the court accepted six new cases for next term, for a total of five hours of oral argument. Amy Howe covers the orders list for this blog. Additional coverage comes from Lyle Denniston at his eponymous blog. At Education Week, Mark Walsh reports that the justices “sent two sets of cases about aid to religious schools back to lower courts for reconsideration in light of their opinion on Monday that a church preschool could not be excluded from a state grant program to improve playgrounds.” Additional coverage of the aid-to-religion remands comes from Andrew Chung at Reuters. Reporting on some of yesterday’s other orders comes from Josh Gerstein at Politico, Lawrence Hurley at Reuters, and Howard Fischer at Capitol Media Services (via the Arizona Capitol Times).

In The Wall Street Journal, Brent Kendall reports that the court “agreed to consider New Jersey’s bid to legalize wagering on sports, a case in which the state is challenging restrictions imposed by the federal government.” Additional coverage of the grant in the two consolidated sports-betting cases, Christie v. National Collegiate Athletic Association and New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, Inc. v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, comes from David Purdum and Ryan Rodenberg at ESPN, Lawrence Hurley at Reuters, Greg Stohr at Bloomberg, Mark Sherman at the Associated Press, and John Brennan at At his eponymous blog, Ross Runkel discusses the court’s decision to review Digital Realty Trust, Inc. v. Somers, which involves the whistleblower provisions of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial law.

The Supreme Court’s announcement Monday that it will hear the two cases challenging the Trump Administration’s entry ban, and its decision to allow partial enforcement of the ban in the meantime, continues to spur court-related coverage and commentary. In The New York Times, Miriam Jordan reports that the court’s ruling has cast doubt on the prospects of refugees seeking resettlement in the United States. Additional coverage of the practical implications of the court’s ruling on the stay comes from Karin Fischer at The Chronicle of Higher Education. At Politico, Josh Gerstein answers five questions about the court’s first entry-ban decision. Commentary comes from Marty Lederman at Just Security, Alex Aleinikoff at ForcedMigrationForum, Ilya Somin at The Washington Post’s Volokh Conspiracy blog, the editorial board of The New York Times, Will Baude at PrawfsBlawg, Michael Dorf at Justia’s Verdict blog, Moustafa Bayoumi in The Guardian, Daniel Hemel at Take Care, Amir Ali, also at Take Care, Corey Brettschneider in an op-ed in The New York Times, Stephen Sachs at PrawfsBlawg, and Ciara Torres-Spelliscy at the Brennan Center for Justice.

In Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer, the justices ruled on Monday that a state cannot deny a church a public benefit – here, improvements to a playground – because of the church’s religious status. Coverage of the effect of the decision on the school-voucher debate comes from Carolyn Thompson at the Associated Press. In The Economist, Steven Mazie also reports on the implications of the decision. Commentary comes from Garrett Epps in The Atlantic, Elizabeth Slattery at The Daily Signal, Jessica Mason Pieklo at Rewire, James Gottry in an op-ed for the Washington Examiner, Elizabeth Reiner Platt at Religion Dispatches, Michael Farris at Fox News, Paul Horwitz at PrawfsBlawg, Erik Stanley in an op-ed for The Kansas City Star, and Cristian Farias at New York Magazine’s Daily Intelligencer. Subscript provides a graphic explainer of the decision.

In Davila v. Davis, the justices held that ineffective postconviction counsel does not excuse procedural default of a claim that a prior appellate lawyer was ineffective. Steve Vladeck has this blog’s argument analysis. Jolie McCullough reports on the decision for The Texas Tribune.

In Hernandez v. Mesa, the justices vacated a ruling against the plaintiffs in a cross-border shooting case and remanded the case for the lower court to reconsider in light of a ruling last week that limited the ability to sue federal officials for damages under the Constitution. Nicando Ianacci covers this development for Constitution Daily, as does Howard Fischer for Capitol Media Services (via the Arizona Capitol Times). Commentary comes from Sarah Seo in The Washington Post and from Michael Dorf at Dorf on Law.

In Pavan v. Smith, the justices summarily ordered Arkansas to provide names of same-sex partners on birth certificates. Howard Fischer covers the ruling for Capitol Media Services (via the Arizona Capitol Times). Joshua Matz comments on Pavan at Take Care. The court also agreed on Monday to review Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, which involves the right of private parties to deny services to same-sex couples, particularly in industries involving expression. At PrawfsBlawg, Will Baude speculates on a possible connection between the justices’ dispositions of these two cases. Erica Goldberg looks at the implications of Pavan for Masterpiece Cakeshop at In a Crowded Theater. Additional commentary on Masterpiece Cakeshop comes from James Gottry in an op-ed for The Denver Post.

At the International Municipal Lawyers Association’s Appellate Practice Blog, Lisa Soronen discusses Murr v. Wisconsin, last week’s regulatory-takings decision, as does Robert Glicksman at The George Washington Law Review’s On the Docket blog.

At Reuters, Lawrence Hurley looks back at the term that just ended and ahead to October Term 2017, as does Adam Liptak in The New York Times, who notes that “[t]he last term was marked by a level of agreement unseen at the court in more than 70 years.” At Empirical SCOTUS, Adam Feldman offers an end-of-term statistical wrap-up that focuses on the justices’ voting patterns.

Coverage of Neil Gorsuch’s debut on the court comes from Greg Stohr at Bloomberg and Robert Barnes in The Washington Post, who concludes that “Gorsuch is a Scalia 2.0, perhaps further to the right.” Commentary comes from Rick Hasen in an op-ed for The Los Angeles Times and Noah Feldman at Bloomberg View. Commentary on Gorsuch’s Second Amendment views comes from Robyn Thomas and Adam Skaggs in an op-ed for the New York Daily News.


  • In a column for Bloomberg View, Stephen Carter speculates on why the Supreme Court appears to be “all but leak-proof.”
  • The Open File blog looks at Turner v. United States, in which the court upheld the convictions of the defendants in a notorious murder trial over a claim that evidence had been suppressed in violation of Brady v. Maryland, noting that “the opinion leaves the law fully intact and merely plunges into the facts of the crime and investigation.”
  • At Lock Law Blog, Ryan Lockman looks at the court’s decision last week in in Lee v. United States, in which the court held that a defendant had been prejudiced by his attorney’s erroneous advice that a guilty plea would not result in mandatory deportation, maintaining that the “case shouldn’t have too many doctrinal implications.”
  • Counting to 5 (podcast) features a discussion of the court’s decision in Matal v. Tam, in which the justices held last week that a ban on the registration of disparaging trademarks violates the First Amendment.

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Wednesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jun. 28, 2017, 6:59 AM),