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Friday round-up

At the close of October Term 2018’s first oral argument session, Jennifer Chacon has this blog’s analysis of Wednesday’s argument in Nielsen v. Preap, which involves the immigration law’s mandatory detention provision. At The Economist’s Democracy in America blog, Steven Mazie reports that the case “boils down to how harshly the government can treat immigrants,” and that “all nine justices struggled to interpret a provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) hinging on the meaning of ‘when’—and were split over how to read it.” This blog’s analysis of Wednesday’s second argument, in Air and Liquid Systems Corp. v. Devries, which asks whether companies can be held liable under maritime law for injuries caused by asbestos that was added to the companies’ products by third parties after the point of sale, comes from Ronald Mann. [Disclosure: Goldstein & Russell, P.C., whose attorneys contribute to this blog in various capacities, is among the counsel to the respondent in this case.] Additional coverage comes from Brandi Buchman at Courthouse News Service.

For The National Law Journal (subscription or registration required), Tony Mauro reports that “new Justice Brett Kavanaugh has decided to join the court’s ‘cert pool,’ a system for sharing law clerks to screen the thousands of incoming petitions for review.” At Balkinization, Deborah Pearlstein considers the possible effect of Kavanaugh’s confirmation process on “public perceptions of the Court.” Another look whether the court is facing a “crisis of legitimacy” in the aftermath of the confirmation comes from Ilya Somin at Reason’s Volokh Conspiracy blog.


  • For this blog, Amy Howe reports that, over dissents from Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Stephen Breyer, the Supreme Court last night vacated a lower-court order staying the execution of Tennessee death-row inmate Edmund Zagorski, but that “the state’s governor gave Zagorski a brief reprieve to provide the state with enough time to prepare the electric chair that Zagorski has requested for use in his execution.”

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Friday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Oct. 12, 2018, 7:14 AM),