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After eight years of silence (so long as you don't count last year's near unintelligible mumble), Justice Clarence Thomas finally spoke during Supreme Court oral arguments, albeit with an odd choice of topic.

Speaking of silence, moments before he spoke up, the House of Representatives passed Articles of Impeachment against the Justice, accusing him of nonfeasance of duty due to his years of silence and repeated refusal to adhere to stare decisis.

Our least favorite thing in the world right now is the obsession with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's retirement. Seriously, pretty much every week, there's an article about how she should retire in time for President Obama to replace her, followed by her saying, "Nah," and dozens of other writers chiming in with "leave the lady alone."

But, the fact is, she's 81, Justice Antonin Scalia is 78, Justice Anthony Kennedy is 77, and Justice Stephen Breyer is 75. They're all probably headed for the exit in the near-term. This begs the question: Who are their likely replacements?

Speaking of soothsaying, there are a couple of interesting certiorari petitions that may, or may not, make the Court's docket -- one involving sex offender laws, and the other presenting the obvious Confrontation Clause issue with red-light cameras.

While the Supreme Court of the United States has us on the edge of our seats as we await opinions and arguments in several hot topic cases, we're only left with some SCOUTS snippets to get us through the day.


SCOTUSblog has released its Stat Pack for the October 2013 term and there are some surprising, and not so surprising facts to be gleaned. So far, the Ninth Circuit is leading the charge with most cases reversed -- so far 5 -- something that we've come to expect. More surprising, is how agreeable the Court has been to date this term. Most of the cases -- 20 so far -- have been decided with a 9-0 vote, while none have had the difficult 5-4 vote. Of course, we're awaiting some controversial decisions in highly charged cases, so that can change anytime.

If you like to pass the time trying to predict the outcomes of Supreme Court decisions, and cert. petitions, and your FantastySCOTUS League is just not enough for you, then SCOTUSblog has something just for you -- the Supreme Court Challenge!

In its third year, the Supreme Court Challenge tests your skills at predicting how the Supreme Court will decide six certiorari petitions, and six merit cases, in April, 2014. The best part? If you win, you get paid. And who among we lawyers, doesn't like money?

Another Monday morning, another orders list [PDF]. Who made the SCOTUS certiorari cut, and who didn't? There are a few notables on both lists, including a grant to a hand-written cert. petition.

Meanwhile, we have a competitor for most humorous amicus brief, with legal satirist P.J. O'Rourke joining forces with Ilya Shapiro at the Cato Institute to mock a particularly egregious Ohio Election law. The brief contains twenty pages of sarcasm, name-calling, and promoting of free speech and political satire over hurt feelings and terrible statutes.

Somebody's been naughty. For the first time ever, there is video footage of the Supreme Court chambers and, well, they look the same as they did five years ago. It's not terribly exciting stuff, with fuzzy footage and audio of someone breathing, except they caught footage of a protestor who interrupted oral arguments and is now being charged with a felony.

Meanwhile, in more official business, the Ninth and Sixth Circuits continue their battle for "most reversed circuit" with a pair of reversals each. Who will win the battle of "least competent court" remains to be seen, but the Ninth just gave 110 percent with their anti-speech rulings.

Another slow week for the Supremes, but on the bright side, the Nine returned to work today, holding their first conference since before the holidays.

According to SCOTUSblog, opinions and orders are expected early next week, so stay tuned. In the meantime, we have another update on Utah, where the Feds just made things even more confusing, we'll take a peek at next week's docket, and then, we'll talk teeth.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor's perfect teeth, to be exact.

In a slow week for Supreme Court news last week, Chief Justice John Roberts (CJJR) released his annual report, a task he took pains to discuss his disdain for in long-form. If you're having issues with insomnia, it's a great cure. Otherwise, here are the highlights of CJJR's performance as Oliver Twist.

The first few pages of the report heap lavish praise upon the historical importance of Congress. The Constitution begot merely one court, while the rest were begotten, through various legislative acts of grace, over the following two centuries. Like any good fundraiser, CJJR starts by heaping praise upon his benefactor and their bountiful deeds, before describe the dire straits of present and the courts' modest requests.

Ready for a three-peat of SCOTUS updates?

Remember that big union case out of Florida, the case that could have changed top-down unionization and greatly weakened organized labor's ability to unionize workplaces through deals with management? Never mind.

And in a less exciting case, the Court clarified Younger abstention, reinstating a lawsuit by Sprint against a local telephone provider.

Plus, Congress was just added to the oral arguments in Noel Canning, the National Labor Relations Board appointments dispute.

Other than the Supreme Court itself, there is one place where we all go to look for the latest news from the nation's high court: SCOTUSblog. Lawyers, students, reporters, bloggers, and even the judges themselves follow the blog, which provides constant coverage of everything Court-related, from opinion orders, to oral arguments. The blog has become so authoritative, that it is often mistaken for the actual court, especially on Twitter.

And yet, despite their authoritative reputation, the blog, which will soon be sporting a "For Sale" sign, lacks a press credential.