Monthly Archives: June 2014

Free Exercise Clause Protection for Junk Science

By Tom Watts Today, the Supreme Court decided Burwell v. Hobby Lobby. In this post, I examine an issue that the Court passed over: whether Hobby Lobby’s belief is actually religious. The Court presumed so, but their presumption was incorrect, and the issue is dispositive. This makes the Court’s decision wrong. The First Amendment protects…

Riley v. California: A Reply

By Jake Laperruque Editor’s note: Jake is responding to the original version of our second post on Riley v. California.  In my opinion, this post’s critique of the Riley decision is wrong for several reasons: First, it complains that the Court did not draw an impossible distinction. There is no realistic way to make a…

Congress on Recess: Noel Canning

By Tom Watts Yesterday, the Supreme Court decided National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning, holding that President Obama’s NLRB appointees exceeded his recess appointments power due to the Senate’s pro forma sessions. For a summary of the decision, I suggest the excellent coverage on SCOTUSblog or Eric Posner’s piece for Slate (which also features…

McCullen v. Coakley: “Something for Everyone”

By Ana Choi The Supreme Court has handed down its decision in McCullen v. Coakley, holding that the Massachusetts statute creating a 35 feet buffer zone around abortion clinics is unconstitutional on First Amendment grounds. Although the holding is unanimous, the majority opinion (written by C.J. Roberts and joined by JJ. Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and…

Unfortunately, Resolving Wurie Perfunctorily may Weaken Riley

By Noah Marks Part 2 in a 2-part series Editor’s note: At the author’s request, this post has been revised substantially since its original posting to more clearly express the author’s intent.  Earlier today, the Supreme Court issued an opinion covering both Riley v. California and United States v. Wurie, holding that police must obtain a warrant…

The Fourth Amendment for the 21st Century

By Daniel Bogdan Part 1 in a 2-part series Editor’s note: At the request of the author, the title has been changed since the original publication of this post. Today, in Riley v. California, the Supreme Court held that law enforcement officers may not search an arrested person’s cellphone incident to arrest without a warrant.  Ruling…

Fraud on the (Inefficient?) Market

By Matt Skurnik Yesterday, in Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc., the Supreme Court, among other holdings, upheld the more than 25-year-old “fraud on the market” theory for securities fraud class actions. Though at first glance this complex case may seem to involve only a very specific and technical distinction, the end result has…

DOMA in bankruptcy court

Marshall Thompson  A year ago, it seemed to me that the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, wasn’t going anywhere despite some challenges to it in federal court. Then the Obama administration announced that it would not defend the law, which it considered to be unconstitutional. Now a bankruptcy court in California has struck down the law, stating…

California Teacher Tenure

By Tom Watts A California trial court judge decided in Vergara v. California today that California’s teacher tenure system violates the state constitution. This is a big deal: teacher tenure has been a political controversy for years, and, while anti-tenure advocates have repeatedly won legislative victories, this is their first judicial victory. However, I want to…

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