Wednesday round-up

By on Sep 18, 2019 at 6:54 am

At Bloomberg, Greg Stohr reports that yesterday “[t]he Trump administration urged the U.S. Supreme Court to give the president more control over the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the agency that regulates mortgages and credit cards,” “[a]sking the court to take up a pending appeal” and to rule that “the Constitution requires that the president be allowed to fire the agency’s director for any reason.” Jess Bravin reports for The Wall Street Journal that “Tuesday’s brief, filed by Solicitor General Noel Francisco, reverses the position the CFPB took before the lower courts, continuing the Trump administration’s effort to reduce the bureau’s power and roll back other provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act that the banking industry complains are too burdensome.”

Continue reading »

Posted in Round-up
 
Share:

The Library of Congress has created a new website for its Constitution Annotated, known officially as the “Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation.” For over 100 years, Constitution Annotated has served as the authoritative source for the American public to learn about the nation’s founding document alongside Supreme Court decisions that have expounded upon and refined it. The newest update, announced just in time for Constitution Day on September 17, is the latest in a string of efforts to bring the project fully into the digital era.

The new site, constitution.congress.gov, is home to a revamped, user-friendly version of the 3,000-page document, which for the first time ever is fully digitally searchable by the general public.

Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden described the site launch as “a great example of what we mean when we say we’re putting our users first.” Hayden emphasized that the new version transforms “the most comprehensive analysis of our Constitution” into a database that is “easier for everyone to use.”

 
Share:

Alice O’Brien is General Counsel at the National Education Association.

The Supreme Court in Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue faces the question of whether, and if so to what degree, the federal free exercise clause restricts how states provide quality K-12 education systems. The petitioners seek a sweeping ruling that would prevent states from enforcing a myriad of state constitutional provisions safeguarding their free, nonsectarian public schools. This result, they assert, naturally follows from the court’s decision in Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia, Inc. v. Comer that a state cannot preclude religious organizations from receiving generally available playground-resurfacing grants. The respondents will argue that Trinity Lutheran, for a variety of reasons, does not prohibit states from choosing to fund only nonsectarian public schools. This post focuses on just one of the reasons: the deference due state constitutional public education provisions.

Continue reading »

Jim Kelly is President of Solidarity Center for Law and Justice, P.C., and Founder and General Counsel of Georgia GOAL Scholarship Program, Inc., Georgia’s largest K-12 tax credit student scholarship program.

During its upcoming term, in Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue, the Supreme Court will decide whether it violates the religion clauses or the equal protection clause of the United States Constitution to invalidate a generally available and religiously neutral student-aid program simply because the program affords students the choice of attending religious schools. In considering the case, the court will examine whether state agencies, such as Montana’s Department of Revenue, can rely on “Blaine Amendments” to deny parties direct or indirect access to public funds for use in schools operated by religious groups.

Continue reading »

Tuesday round-up

By on Sep 17, 2019 at 6:45 am

For The Washington Post, Seung Min Kim reports that recent “revelations about the process” followed in investigating allegations of sexual misconduct against Justice Brett Kavanaugh during Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing last year have “renewed a bitter debate about how his confirmation was handled, angering Democrats about a process they felt was rushed and animating Republicans who decried what they viewed as attempts to assassinate Kavanaugh’s character.” Commentary comes from Dahlia Lithwick at Slate and from the editorial board of The Wall Street Journal.

Continue reading »

Posted in Round-up
 
Share:

Two years ago, the Supreme Court ruled that Missouri’s policy of excluding churches from a program to provide grants to resurface playgrounds violated the Constitution. In a footnote in their opinion in Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer, the justices emphasized that their decision was limited to the facts before them and did “not address religious uses of funding or other forms of discrimination.” This winter, the justices will return to the question that they left open in Trinity Lutheran, when they review a decision by the Montana Supreme Court invalidating a tax-credit program because the scholarships created by the program could be used at religious schools. The impact of the justices’ eventual ruling could be significant: According to one “friend of the court” brief supporting Espinoza’s petition for review, 18 other states have similar tax-credit scholarship programs.

The Montana legislature created the scholarship program at the heart of the dispute in 2015. The program provides a dollar-for-dollar tax credit of up to $150 for individuals and businesses who donate to private scholarship organizations. The money donated to the scholarship organizations is used to provide scholarships for children to attend private schools – the vast majority of which, in Montana, are religious.

Continue reading »

Monday round-up

By on Sep 16, 2019 at 4:54 am

At The New York Times, Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly explore allegations of sexual misconduct against Justice Brett Kavanaugh that surfaced during Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing last year. Catherine Lucey reports for The Wall Street Journal that “[p]olitical sparring over … Kavanaugh ’s … confirmation … flared up Sunday following [the] report, with some Democratic presidential candidates calling for his removal from the bench and President Trump defending his court pick.” Additional coverage comes from Tucker Higgins at CNBC and Gabriella Munoz at The Washington Times.

Continue reading »

Posted in Round-up
 
Share:

Court issues December calendar

By on Sep 13, 2019 at 4:36 pm

The Supreme Court issued its calendar for the December sitting today. The justices are scheduled to kick off the sitting, which begins on Monday, December 2, with the oral argument in the challenge to New York City’s ban on transporting guns outside the city’s limits. But it’s not clear that the oral argument will actually take place: On October 1, the justices will consider whether to dismiss the case because the city has amended its regulations (and the state has also changed its gun licensing laws). Between December 2 and December 11, the justices will hear oral arguments in a total of 15 cases over 12 hours, addressing a wide variety of issues.

Continue reading »

 
Share:

Courts and Culture: Examining the Establishment Clause post-Bladensburg and a Supreme Court Preview on the Future of Title VII
Monday, September 16, 12:30 p.m. ET at Jones Day in Washington, D.C.

The Alliance Defending Freedom and Jones Day will host a two-panel discussion on the establishment clause and religious liberty at the Supreme Court. The first panel will focus on last term and the American Legion decision, featuring ADF’s David Cortman, Mayer Brown’s Charles Rothfeld and Jones Day’s Kaytlin Roholt, moderated by the New York Times’ Adam Liptak. The second panel will look to next term and especially the Title VII cases, featuring ADF’s John Bursch and Goodwin Law’s Brian Burgess, moderated by SCOTUSblog’s Amy Howe. Click here for more info and to RSVP (space is limited). Click here to watch the livestream.

Continue reading »

 
Share:

Melissa Crow is a senior supervising attorney with the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Immigrant Justice Project.

On November 12, the Supreme Court will hear argument in three consolidated cases – Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of the University of California, Trump v. NAACP and McAleenan v. Batalla Vidal – that challenge the Trump administration’s decision to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

DACA is an Obama-era initiative that provides temporary relief from deportation and work authorization to certain young people who were brought to the U.S. as children. The diverse panoply of parties involved in these proceedings – including affected individuals, states, corporations, universities, nonprofit organizations and labor unions, among many others ­– illustrates the far-reaching impact of DACA and the critical importance of the issues at stake.

Continue reading »

More Posts: More Recent PostsOlder Posts
Term Snapshot
At a Glance
Awards