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Thursday round-up

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg underwent a minimally invasive medical procedure, and the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to allow it to continue using federal funds to build its border wall. Those were the two main stories from the court on Wednesday, and Amy Howe has the details on both of them. Ginsburg was back in the hospital for a common, non-surgical procedure to revise a bile duct stent that was originally placed last year, and she expects to be released from the hospital by the end of the week, Howe reports in a story for SCOTUSblog that was first published at Howe on the Court. And in the latest filing in the legal dispute over President Donald Trump’s wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, the administration asked the justices not to undo a previous order that has allowed the government to continue building the wall while a legal challenge makes its way up to the high court.

CNN’s Joan Biskupic also wraps up her exclusive and much-discussed four-part series on the inner workings of the Supreme Court during its contentious 2019-20 term. In the final installment of the series, Biskupic reports that the court’s decisions in a pair of cases involving Trump’s financial records – Trump v. Mazars and Trump v. Vance – were the product of two months of tense negotiations during which Chief Justice John Roberts cobbled together a seven-justice coalition to issue a pair of compromise rulings.


  • The University of Pennsylvania Law School’s Regulatory Review continues its annual series of essays on regulatory cases at the Supreme Court. Stephen Lee assesses the formalistic aspects of Roberts’ opinion in Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of University of California, concluding that the decision “illustrates the limits of the good governance rationale in the context of ongoing struggles by lawyers, advocates, and organizers to expand immigrant rights.” Richard Pierce, meanwhile, argues that the court has “reinvigorated, strengthened, and broadened the scope of the duty to engage in reasoned decision-making.” According to Pierce, cases from this term and years prior make it harder for government actors to “take actions in bad faith that are motivated only by partisan political goals or legally impermissible goals.”
  • At the Volokh Conspiracy, Josh Blackman analyzes the three dissenting opinions in the court’s recent 5-4 decision rejecting a Nevada church’s emergency challenge to the state’s coronavirus restrictions.
  • The Impartial Review – a recently launched blog that aims to provide non-biased and accessible information about Supreme Court cases – explains the court’s recent ruling in McGirt v. Oklahoma, a decision that “changed the lives of more than 1.8 million people in the American Midwest.”

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Recommended Citation: James Romoser, Thursday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Jul. 30, 2020, 8:04 AM),