At In These Times, Shaun Richman weighs in on Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Council 31, in which the court will consider whether an Illinois law allowing public-sector unions to charge nonmembers for collective-bargaining activities violates the First Amendment; he suggests that “the possibility of other, unintended consequences” from a ruling against the union “is beginning to excite some union advocates and stir fear among conservative constitutional scholars.” Mic Dicta (podcast) features a discussion of the case, which will be argued on February 26. At In a Crowded Theater, Erica Goldberg notes that the question of whether the court should overrule its prior precedent in the case, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, is complicated by the fact that “Abood is fairly incoherent,” and argues that “[e]ven if this current Court can distinguish between a union’s expenditures on collective bargaining and on political expression, it should not do so based on the murky logic of Abood.”
- For USA Today, Richard Wolf reports that “Supreme Court precedents that have stood the test of time for generations are in danger of falling like dominoes in the next few months.”
- For CNN, Ariane de Vogue reports that in an interview this weekend, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said she “believes the ‘#MeToo’ movement will have ‘staying power’ and that she doesn’t worry about a serious backlash.”
- At Reuters, Alison Frankel looks at the Department of Justice’s pending request that the Supreme Court review a lower-court order blocking the Trump administration’s attempt to unwind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program before the court of appeals has ruled on the case; she notes that “[i]t’s easy to forget, amid political furor about the future of the young adults whose parents brought them to this country illegally when they were children, just how extraordinary the DOJ petition is.”
- At National Review, Margot Cleveland predicts that in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, in which the court will decide whether the First Amendment bars Colorado from requiring a baker to create a cake for a same-sex wedding, “the Supreme Court seems ready to rule for [the baker] by accepting his argument for the free exercise of religion but premised on a very narrow basis — that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission violated his right to free exercise of religion by acting ‘with hostility’ toward his ‘religious beliefs,’ [an outcome that] would do nothing for religious liberty more broadly.”
- At the Cato Institute’s Cato at Liberty blog, Ilya Shapiro and Matthew Larosiere urge the justices to review and reverse a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals from the 9th Circuit “that buying and selling guns [is] beyond the scope of the Second Amendment.”
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