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Wednesday round-up

At NPR, Nina Totenberg reports that “[a] specially appointed federal panel of judges has dismissed all 83 ethics complaints brought against Justice Brett Kavanaugh regarding his conduct at his confirmation hearings,” “conclud[ing] that while the complaints ‘are serious,’ there is no existing authority that allows lower court judges to investigate or discipline Supreme Court justices.” Additional coverage comes from Kevin Daley at The Daily Caller, Joan Biskupic at CNN, Samuel Chamberlain at Fox News, Ann Marimow and Robert Barnes for The Washington Post, and Tony Mauro at The National Law Journal (subscription or registration required).


  • Richard Wolf reports for USA Today that Kavanaugh “is starting what could be decades on the bench with a sense of caution that has put him at odds with his fellow conservatives,” in distinct contrast with … his immediate predecessor, Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, who came on like gangbusters 20 months ago as President Donald Trump’s first addition to the court.”
  • At Law360 (subscription required), Jimmy Hoover notes that “Kavanaugh predicted two years ago that the Supreme Court would ‘someday’ overturn a legal doctrine in favor of government agencies known as Auer deference, and he could now be the one to decide whether that happens after the court agreed to review Auer,” in Kisor v. Wilkie.
  • In The Atlantic, Dahlia Lithwick writes that “[i]n a revealing new biography [of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg], 15 years in the making, Jane Sherron De Hart helps untangle the mystery of the decorous Ginsburg as feminist gladiator.”
  • At the ABA Journal, Debra Cassens Weiss looks at “an analysis of nearly 3,000 hours of oral arguments for more than a 30-year period” suggesting that the “[v]ocal pitch of U.S. Supreme Court justices during oral arguments is strongly predictive of their votes.”

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Wednesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Dec. 19, 2018, 6:57 AM),