|Docket No.||Op. Below||Argument||Opinion||Vote||Author||Term|
|07-455||9th Cir.||Mar 25, 2008||May 19, 2008||8-1||Stevens||OT 2007|
Holding: Since Ahmed Ressam was carrying explosives when he violated 18 U. S. C. § 1001 by feloniously making a false statement to a customs official, he was carrying them "during" the commission of that felony. The most natural reading of Section 844(h)(2) provides a sufficient basis for reversal. It is undisputed that the items in respondent's car were "explosives," and that he was "carr[ying]" those explosives when he knowingly made false statements to a customs official in violation of Section 1001. Dictionary definitions need not be consulted to arrive at the conclusion that he engaged in Section 844(h)(2)'s precise conduct. "[D]uring" denotes a temporal link. Because his carrying of explosives was contemporaneous with his Section 1001 violation, he carried them "during" that violation. The statute's history further supports the conclusion that Congress did not intend a relational requirement in Section 844(h) as presently written.
Judgment: Reversed, 8-1, in an opinion by Justice John Paul Stevens on May 19, 2008. Justices Scalia and Thomas joined the opinion as to Part I. Justice Thomas filed an opinion concurring in part and concurring in the judgment, in which Justice Scalia joined. Justice Breyer filed a dissenting opinion.
Merits briefs (via ABA)
Cecilia (Cissy) Suyat Marshall, the widow of Thurgood Marshall, died this morning at 94. Here is the court's announcement.
BREAKING: The Supreme Court REJECTS Trump's bid to prevent the House Ways & Means Committee from obtaining his tax returns. No noted dissents.
The brief order may end years of litigation over the committee's efforts to review the tax records of Trump and his businesses.
JUST IN: Whisky, dog toys... and trademark law.
SCOTUS has agreed to hear a dispute between Jack Daniel's and a company that makes squeaking "Bad Spaniels" dog toys. The case will have implications for the tension between parody & intellectual property. https://www.supremecourt.gov/orders/courtorders/112122zr_e1p3.pdf
In a quiet Monday morning order list, SCOTUS adds no new cases to its docket. The court will not hear Brooks v. Abbott, a challenge to an alleged racial gerrymander of a state senate district in Texas. Here's the full order list: https://www.supremecourt.gov/orders/courtorders/112122zor_7lhn.pdf
JUST IN: The Biden administration, as expected, asks the Supreme Court to revive Biden's student-loan relief plan. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit blocked the government from implementing the plan; Biden wants SCOTUS to lift that ruling. https://www.scotusblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/22A444-2.pdf
JUST IN: The Supreme Court DENIES Arizona GOP chair Kelli Ward's bid to block the Jan. 6 committee from reviewing her phone records. Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito dissent from the court's brief, unexplained order denying Ward's request.
NEW: Another fight on the shadow docket over a subpoena seeking information about election interference. Arizona GOP chairwoman Kelli Ward is asking SCOTUS to block the Jan. 6 committee's subpoena for her phone records. Here's Ward's filing: https://www.scotusblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/22A350.pdf