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Monday round-up

For The National Law Journal (subscription or registration required), Tony Mauro identifies “several factors that could make it difficult for Brett Kavanaugh—if he is confirmed by the Senate—to hit the ground running” when the new Supreme Court term begins on October 1. For USA Today, Richard Wolf explains that that “[b]ecause he would replace retired justice Anthony Kennedy, who occasionally sided with the court’s liberal wing, Kavanaugh particularly could shift the balance on cases involving abortion, capital punishment, racial discrimination and gay rights.”

In an op-ed for the Washington Examiner, Becket Adams observes that “Americans increasingly want the Senate to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court, according to a new Quinnipiac poll.” In an op-ed at Fox News, Carrie Severino remarks that Democratic senators up for re-election in red states are “in a tight spot” when deciding how to vote on the Kavanaugh nomination because “[t]heir constituents strongly favor the judge’s confirmation and recognize that critical issues are at stake with the appointment of the next justice to the Supreme Court.”

The editorial board of The Washington Post suggests that “there is no compelling public-interest argument to hold a vote [on Kavanaugh’s nomination] by early October,” noting that even as to documents from Kavanaugh’s tenure in the White House counsel’s office, which “both sides agree that senators should review,” “[t]he National Archives must be the arbiter not only of which documents are sent to the committee but also of the terms on which they are turned over,” which “might mean Republicans have to adjust their confirmation schedule.” At Slate, Peter Shane argues that “the most important issue with regard to [Kavanaugh’s] potential confirmation … may be his views on executive power and accountability,” and that “[i]n considering those views, it’s important to examine and question his full record,” including “documents concerning more than 100 signing statements by George W. Bush during Kavanaugh’s time in the administration … asserting that more than 1,000 different statutory provisions Bush signed into law were potentially intrusive on the president’s constitutional authorities.”

The editorial board of The Wall Street Journal weighs in on the lawsuit Jack Phillips, the cake artist at the center of last term’s Masterpiece Cakeshop case, has filed against Colorado state officials who “found probable cause that Mr. Phillips had unlawfully discriminated in another case—by refusing to bake a custom cake (blue on the outside, pink on the inside) to celebrate the transgender transition of Autumn Scardina from a man to a woman”; the board hopes that “if Mr. Phillips ends up back before the Court, … the majority this time lays out clear guidelines protecting his religious and speech rights.” Additional commentary comes from James Gottry in an op-ed at The Hill and from Jay Hobbs at The Federalist.

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Monday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Aug. 20, 2018, 6:56 AM),