Category SCOTUS

Cutting Justice Kennedy’s Collapsing Cake

[Editors’ Note: Friend of the blog Justin Burnam got into the oral argument for Masterpiece Cakeshop yesterday. We’re pleased to be able to host him here for his reflections.] The Supreme Court yesterday heard oral argument in Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. Outside the courthouse, two energetic crowds—each replete with signs, flags, and booming […]

Starr International: Prudential Standing’s Last Stand?

[Editors’ Note: This post is not technically a “Term Preview” since only a cert petition has been filed so far in the case, but it’s very much a petition to keep an eye on. Additionally, the author alone takes sole responsibility for every bad pun in this post.] Introduction In Lexmark International back in 2014, the Supreme […]

Digital Realty Trust v. Somers: Should the Court Take Congress Seriously *and* Literally?

Every now and again, a case comes before the Court that raises a multitude of important public policy questions, involves a set of politically salient issues, and garners widespread attention in the media. Digital Realty Trust is not really that case. However, the issue raised in the question presented is no less important given it requires the […]

“Just Compensation”: A Tale of the Dirt Farmer and the Island Owner

Eminent domain—It is a term evocative of aristocracy from a bygone era, one that should be written in gilded script that graces an old regal manuscript. This word association is perhaps accurate given what the term represents in legal parlance: the government’s ability to expropriate the territory of its citizens. In the United States, this […]

Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis: FAA v. NLRA

Introduction It should come as no surprise given the size of the United States Code, but every now and again two federal statutes point crossways. Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis presents the Court with one such conflict between the Federal Arbitration Act on the one hand and the National Labor Relations Act on the other. […]

Forgotten Chief: William Cushing & the End of Slavery in Massachusetts

On September 13, 1810, William Cushing passed away in Scituate, MA. Cushing had served his nation in a number of important and prestigious roles: Chief Justice on the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts during the Revolution, one of the six original Associate Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States (where he served for […]

“[T]he Worst Kind of Justice” – Justice Gorsuch, Slatesplained

Yesterday marked the end of the Court’s October Term 2016, meaning the last few cases yet to be decided were announced and various pending matters were otherwise disposed of (deets on that can be found here and other forthcoming summaries). It was a pretty typical end-of-term day, what with big cases granted cert for argument next term, an interesting constitutional decision announced, and the commentariat atwitter just trying to keep up.