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Wednesday round-up

At Politico, Elana Schor reports that “[p]artisan tensions over records on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh boiled over on Tuesday, as Democrats insisted on access to all communications from his five years in the George W. Bush White House while Republicans tried to narrow the scope of the massive document release.” Additional coverage of the dissension over document disclosure comes from Seung Min Kim for The Washington Post. At The Daily Caller, Kevin Daley reports that “Judge Brett Kavanaugh cannot explain two-thirds of his recusals from matters before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit,” and that “[t]he unexplained recusals limit insights into the parties or issue areas that trigger conflicts of interest on Kavanaugh’s end.” In an op-ed for The New York Times, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., warns that “[t]he methodical review of a federal court nominee’s record is not optional,” and that “[w]earing blinders when considering a former administration official for a lifetime judgeship presents grave risks.” The editorial board of The Wall Street Journal maintains that “Republicans have no reason to agree to what are unreasonable Democratic demands.”

Thomas Kaplan reports for The New York Times that the re-election campaign of Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., “is a prime example of why the party’s fight against Judge Kavanaugh faces almost impossible odds.” At Vox, Li Zhou reports that “Sen. Rand Paul, the libertarian-leaning lawmaker from Kentucky and a recurring troublemaker for the GOP, says his mind still isn’t made up on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.” Additional coverage of Paul’s doubts comes from Burgess Everett at Politico, who reports that “the Kentucky Republican has every intention of maximizing his leverage.”

At the Yale Journal on Regulation’s Notice & Comment blog, Michael Kagan observes that Kavanaugh’s dissent in one of the few immigration cases he decided on the court of appeals suggests that “he takes a restrictionist approach to interpreting immigration law” and that he “seems to have relied on assumptions about the impact of immigration on the American economy, without rigorously searching for an evidentiary foundation in the record.” In an op-ed for the Washington Examiner, Hiram Sasser asserts that Kavanaugh’s record shows him to be “an ardent defender of religious liberty.”

At The Detroit News, Keith Laing reports that “[u]nions have noted [Kavanaugh] ruled against them in high-profile cases, including a 2016 case involving the right of employers in arbitration agreements to require that workers waive their rights to picket.” For this blog, Eric Citron looks at what Kavanaugh’s dissent from denial of rehearing en banc in the net-neutrality case shows about the judge’s views about the administrative state.


  • At Take Care, Aaron Tang explores the “(multi-) million dollar question” whether, after the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Council 31, “objecting workers may sue for a refund of all fees they’ve paid to a public sector union, going back in time (or at least so far as the applicable statute of limitations will allow).”
  • In the Penn Program on Regulation’s Regulatory Review, Michael Knoll suggests that the court’s decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, which cleared the way for states to require out-of-state retailers who don’t have a store or warehouse in the state to collect tax on sales to state residents, “is not so much the end of the story as it is the opening of a new chapter in the long-running saga of state efforts to collect sales taxes on goods purchased from out-of-state sellers.”

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Wednesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jul. 25, 2018, 6:51 AM),