Category Archives: OT 2017

Conference Report: April 13, 2018 Conference

On Monday, the Supreme Court asked the United States Solicitor General to weigh in on four petitions for certiorari when it released the Order List from its April 13 Conference. And it denied the petition filed by former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, who was convicted of seeking campaign contributions in exchange for official acts. Blagojevich … Continue reading Conference Report: April 13, 2018 Conference

Argument Review: March 27, 2018 — When the Supreme Court Can’t Agree

On Tuesday, March 27, the Court heard oral arguments in Hughes v. United States. The underlying legal issue in Hughes involves certain criminal defendants’ eligibility for sentence reductions. That fairly technical legal issue was previously considered by the Court in Freeman v. United States, which had no majority opinion. Instead, there was a four-justice plurality … Continue reading Argument Review: March 27, 2018 — When the Supreme Court Can’t Agree

Argument Review: March 26, 2018 — Access to Courts

During the last week of March, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in five cases. Two of those cases involved questions about access to courts, albeit in extremely different contexts. In United States v. Sanchez-Gomez, argued on March 26, involves a challenge to a policy of shackling the arms and feet of criminal defendants during … Continue reading Argument Review: March 26, 2018 — Access to Courts

Arguments: Week of April 16, 2018 – Part II

The Supreme Court will hear oral argument in six cases this coming week, two each on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. On Tuesday, it will hear argument in a bankruptcy case, and on Wednesday it hears about Indian tribal fishing rights and criminal sentencing. We reported on Monday’s cases and the other Tuesday argument in an … Continue reading Arguments: Week of April 16, 2018 – Part II

Arguments: Week of April 16, 2018 – Part I

The Court will sit for oral argument again this coming week. South Dakota v. Wayfair, to be argued on Tuesday, is perhaps the most far-reaching of the cases to be heard, although at first glance it may look esoteric — covering such issues as state sales taxes, the dormant commerce clause and stare decisis, the … Continue reading Arguments: Week of April 16, 2018 – Part I

Conference Report: March 23 and 29 Conferences

The Supreme Court added only one new case to its docket for next year in its two most recent Conferences, held on March 23 and March 29. The Court granted certiorari in Stokeling v. United States, a case about the definition of “violent felony” under the Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”), 18 U.S.C. §924(e)(2)(B)(i). Because … Continue reading Conference Report: March 23 and 29 Conferences

Argument Review: Contract Clause and Tribal Sovereign Immunity

For the first time in a quarter century, the Contract Clause was the central issue in oral arguments at the Supreme Court. In Sveen v. Melin, the issue is whether a Minnesota law nullifying an ex-spouse’s beneficiary status in a life insurance policy violates the Contract Clause, which prohibits states from passing laws “impairing the … Continue reading Argument Review: Contract Clause and Tribal Sovereign Immunity

Argument Review: NIFLA v. Becerra

Free speech and reproductive rights were at issue when the Court heard oral arguments in the highly anticipated case National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA) v. Becerra on Tuesday, March 20. As described here, his case concerns whether the First Amendment allows the State of California, via the Reproductive FACT Act, to require … Continue reading Argument Review: NIFLA v. Becerra

Conference Report: March 16, 2018 Conference

On Monday, March 19, the Court released orders from the March 16 conference. The Court granted certiorari for Nielson v. Preap, a case concerning whether a noncitizen, pursuant to 8 U.S.C. §1226(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, is exempt from mandatory detention if the Department of Homeland Security does not take him into immigration … Continue reading Conference Report: March 16, 2018 Conference

Opinion Analysis—Ayestas v. Davis and Marinello v. United States

On Wednesday, the Court released two opinions. In Ayestas v. Davis, Ayestas, a Honduran national, was sentenced to death after being convicted of murdering a woman during a home invasion. (See our Arguments Preview for more on case.) He appealed, arguing that he had ineffective counsel and was entitled, under federal law, to state investigative … Continue reading Opinion Analysis—Ayestas v. Davis and Marinello v. United States