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Law, Courts and Politics
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Foreword: Are elected state judges now “above the political fray”?

Foreword: Are elected state judges now “above the political fray”? | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it

The blog is delighted to host an online symposium on today’s decision in Williams-Yulee v. The Florida Bar.  Our first post is a foreword to the symposium by Ronald K.L. Collins, who organized the event.

Suppose a state's view is [that] we want . . . our judiciary to be above the politica

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Supreme Court hearing about lethal injection procedures turns into heated debate

Supreme Court hearing about lethal injection procedures turns into heated debate | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
The Supreme Court’s hearing Wednesday about the constitutionality of a lethal injection procedure turned into a tendentious, almost bitter battle between the court’s conservative and liberal justices.
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Gay marriage’s road to popularity, in 5 charts

Gay marriage’s road to popularity, in 5 charts | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
From 11 percent support in 1988 to a majority 25 years later.
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How To Read The Mind Of A Supreme Court Justice

How To Read The Mind Of A Supreme Court Justice | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
Despite the gleaming white building that houses it, the Supreme Court is one of the most powerful black boxes in the country. When it convenes for oral arguments, there are no photos, no videos, no...
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Views of Supreme Court Little Changed as Major Rulings Loom

Views of Supreme Court Little Changed as Major Rulings Loom | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
Survey Report Public views of the Supreme Court are little changed since last summer, following the court’s ruling in the Hobby Lobby case and other
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A Taste of the Many Amicus Briefs in the Same-Sex Marriage Case

A Taste of the Many Amicus Briefs in the Same-Sex Marriage Case | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
The same-sex marriage cases, known to posterity as DeBoer v. Synder, may very well be the biggest civil rights decision of our generation. As such, everyone wants to put their two cents into what will undoubtedly become an historic opinion....
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Campaign Money Tests Wisconsin Justices’ Impartiality

Campaign Money Tests Wisconsin Justices’ Impartiality | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
The State Supreme Court has scheduled arguments about a financing case that involves groups that spent millions backing some of the justices.
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Supreme Court Sides With Amtrak, With Some Distaste

The court ruled that the railroad was a government agency, not a private company, in a case challenging its standards-setting role. But two justices had much more to say.
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Some Supreme Court Justices Cite 2012 Argument Against Health Care Law as Defense for It Now

Some Supreme Court Justices Cite 2012 Argument Against Health Care Law as Defense for It Now | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
Several justices indicated that they could uphold part of the Affordable Care Act by invoking principles that the court cited to criticize the law in a different case.
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Alabama Court Orders a Halt to Same-Sex Marriage Licenses

The order by the state’s Supreme Court was in direct opposition to a federal judge’s ruling.
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Is Supreme Court's chief justice ready to take down ObamaCare?

Is Supreme Court's chief justice ready to take down ObamaCare? | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts faced a conservative backlash after casting a decisive vote to save ObamaCare in 2012.

Now he must weigh in on the law once again.
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In a Case of Religious Dress, Justices Explore the Obligations of Employers

In a Case of Religious Dress, Justices Explore the Obligations of Employers | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
A vigorous argument before the Supreme Court explored religious stereotypes, employment discrimination and the symbolism of the Muslim head scarf, all arising from an encounter at a clothing store in Tulsa, Okla.
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Where does the government’s right to require vaccinations come from?

Where does the government’s right to require vaccinations come from? | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
How did the government first deal with the legal issue of requiring vaccines that promote immunity against diseases? The legal debate goes back more than a century and gives most of that power to t...
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High court: States may ban judicial candidates from personal fundraising

Chief Justice John Roberts joined liberal justices in ruling that Florida’s limits don’t violate the First Amendment.
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Why a Ruling for Same-Sex Marriage Would Help Republicans

Why a Ruling for Same-Sex Marriage Would Help Republicans | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
It would allow the party to abandon an increasingly unpopular position without seeming to compromise on principle.
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The Amazing Volume of Amicus Briefs in Today's Same-sex Marriage Case

The Amazing Volume of Amicus Briefs in Today's Same-sex Marriage Case | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
The case has attracted what seems to be a record number of amicus briefs.  As we discussed last year, the then-top amicus brief attractors were the same-sex marriage cases of Windsor and Perry, which garnered 96 and 80 amicus briefs respectively, and the 2013 affirmative action case of Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, which attracted 92.  
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Gay Marriage Arguments Divide Supreme Court Justices

Gay Marriage Arguments Divide Supreme Court Justices | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
The justice believed to hold the controlling vote, Anthony M. Kennedy, appeared torn about what to do in a groundbreaking civil rights case.
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Interest picks up in legal marijuana as constitutional issue

Interest picks up in legal marijuana as constitutional issue | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
Comments from a GOP presidential contender and a federal judge have put the issue of states legalizing marijuana back on the constitutional front burner.
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Study: Judges Are Far Less Biased Than Law School Students

Study: Judges Are Far Less Biased Than Law School Students | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it

A new study says judges, at least ones sitting on state benches,  are more objective than they get credit for. The report, forthcoming in the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, says judges by and large are able to exercise professional judgement and reach consensus on disputes that polarize the general public.

 

The study, which took more than two years to conduct, included about 1,500 subjects: 253 judges, 225 lawyers, 250 law students (from five schools including Harvard and Yale), and 800 adults members of the general public.

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Kansas Schools Fight Plays Out Against Backdrop of Debate on Judiciary

Kansas Schools Fight Plays Out Against Backdrop of Debate on Judiciary | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it

TOPEKA, Kan. — This state’s judicial and legislative branches are on course for a constitutional clash after a state appellate court suggested that it might block a school financing plan that lawmakers passed.

The plan, championed by the conservative-dominated Legislature and the Republican governor, Sam Brownback, cut tens of millions of dollars in aid intended to close disparities between rich and poor districts.

The measure passed this month even as a three-judge panel hinted that it might stay the measure while it determines whether the Legislature was breaching its financial obligations. Republican leaders have denounced the court as overstepping its bounds.

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Justices May Review Capital Cases In Which Judges Overrode Juries

Justices May Review Capital Cases In Which Judges Overrode Juries | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
State law allows judges to override jury recommendations in either direction: from life to death or from death to life. But judges mostly choose death.
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States want immigration policy kept on hold

States want immigration policy kept on hold | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
Twenty-six states that had persuaded a federal judge last month to delay the Obama administration’s new policy on deferring deportation of more than four million undocumented immigrants argued on Tuesday that there was no emergency, so no need to let the policy go into effect. The filing  in a federal trial court in Brownsville, Texas, urged the judge... Read More
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Court to hear dispute over redistricting power: In Plain English

Court to hear dispute over redistricting power:  In Plain English | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
Arizona voters were fed up.  After each census, states have to draw new boundaries to elect members of the House of Representatives in Washington.  Until 2000, the state legislature took on this job, as it does in many other states.  But voters weren’t happy with the results:  in Arizona, as e
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Context is key

Context is key | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
As with everything else here these days, the talk about the Affordable Care Act case before the Supreme Court next week will focus on ideological splits: Will any conservative justice join the four liberals all but certain to back the administration?

In fact, the correct conservative legal position would be to rule for the administration.
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Obamacare could end John Roberts’s nonpartisan dream for the Court

Obamacare could end John Roberts’s nonpartisan dream for the Court | Law, Courts and Politics | Scoop.it
He labors to keep the justices united so they don’t look political. The new case makes that extremely difficult.
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