Supreme Court People and Events News - U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Supreme Court - The FindLaw U.S. Supreme Court Opinion Summaries Blog

Recently in People and Events Category

We've discussed Justice Samuel Alito's truancy in the past, with the Justice sitting out of dozens of certiorari denials and initially recusing himself from this term's Limelight, Pom Wonderful, and Aereo cases, all likely due to conflicts presented by his stock portfolio. (Though the Justices do not disclose their reasons for self-recusal, Alito's financial disclosures have shed a lot of light on patterns of inherited and purchased stocks, past recusals, and botched non-recusals.)

With Alito benched, rather than on the bench, there was some concern over whether Aereo could end in a 4-4 tie, leaving the Second Circuit's pro-Aereo opinion intact, but also leaving the rest of the land (which includes anti-Aereo court decisions in other circuits) unaffected. Worry not though, as he just unrecused himself in Aereo and Pom Wonderful, days before oral arguments.

For the last week, one of the top posts on The Washington Post's website has been retired Justice John Paul Stevens' "Justice Stevens: The five extra words that can fix the Second Amendment," an excerpt from his upcoming book, "Six Amendments: How and Why We Should Change the Constitution."

Personally, I can't wait to read the book, even if there is no doubt in my mind that I'll disagree with at least one-sixth of it. It's important to hear other perspectives, and debate big issues, and make no mistake about it, gun rights is one of the biggest issues facing our country today.

Ah, another slow week on First Street. Not to worry, folks, there's plenty of Supreme Court gossip to tide you over.

No, the Hillary Clinton reference in the headline has nothing to do with a flying shoe (no word on the make and model of said shoe, but we do know that it was feminine and orange). Though that incident has snatched up the headlines, a different speech by the possible presidential candidate, discussing the court's ruling in McCutcheon, is far more interesting. She hates the ruling, but an interesting question is: Does she benefit from it?

Meantime, thanks to a few recent developments in same-sex marriage litigation appeals, the race to the Supreme Court has shifted. Who's on track, and who is likely to file for certiorari first? We'll handicap the odds.

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.

You go on vacation for a little more than a week and ... wait for it ... nothing happens.

Yep. You'd think, with the end of the October Term, that there'd be some titillating opinions, such as Noel Canning, McCutcheon, or Town of Greece, but um, there was a railroad right-of-way case and some notable denials.

Sorry about that. We'll tell RBG to speed things up a bit next time we're in D.C. (And no, Erwin Chemerinsky, she's still not retiring. Ever.) Until then, here are a few snippets of SCOTUS goodness to tide you over:

Two more days until the Court gets back to work. Friday's conference presents a number of interesting cases, including concealed carry of firearms and remedies for prosecutorial misconduct. Anticipation is building for the conference, where the Court could take on a number of cases that could prove to be landmark decisions.

Here is a roundup of a few interesting issues that could make their way onto the court's docket in the near future:

Today's a day for three of my favorite topics: guns, Ginsburg, and people suing the crap out of the National Security Agency. When Ginsburg, Kagan, and the rest of the justices stop making speeches and return to chambers (seriously, five out of the Nine made speeches last week), they'll consider landmark cases dealing with the Second and Fourth Amendment, if they grant certiorari.

What's got us so excited on a Thursday morning, besides the impending weekend? Read on:

Two more briefs, addressing the merits of the Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby dispute, hit our inboxes this morning, including Hobby Lobby's response brief. Washington University in St. Louis also took the time to highlight a brief by "Church State Scholars," to which they added a handy accompanying video.

These briefs, and the dozens of others that we haven't read, got us wondering: how many briefs have been filed so far? And does anybody read them?

You've probably noticed, at some point, that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wears a frilly lace collar with her robe, as did Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

I always assumed that the collar was just part of the uniform. After all, every woman in Supreme Court history (at that point, all two of them) wore them. They look a bit funny, almost British, but what exactly are they? And why do some of the female justices wear them?

It's a big week for oral arguments in the Court, with fascinating questions of statutory interpretation in the areas of gun purchasing regulations and criminal restitution.

Meanwhile, are two of the court's liberal justices feuding? And if so, who has more support on the Court?