Supreme Court Cases


Supreme Court Cases News & Opinion ArticlesDisplaying 1 - 20 of 93 1 2 3 4 5 Next
  • In three cases argued last week—Bostock v. Clayton County, Altitude Express v. Zarda, and Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC—the Supreme Court confronted this question: Does Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination “because of [an] individual’s … sex” forbid discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity?
  • The Supreme Court ruled unanimously Wednesday that the Constitution’s ban on excessive fines applies to the states, an outcome that could help efforts to rein in police seizure of property from criminal suspects. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote the court’s opinion in favor of Tyson Timbs, of Marion, Indiana. Police seized Timbs’ $40,000 Land Rover when they arrested him for selling about $400 worth of heroin.
  • The Supreme Court ruled unanimously Wednesday that the Constitution’s ban on excessive fines applies to the states, an outcome that could help efforts to rein in police seizure of property from criminal suspects. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote the court’s opinion in favor of Tyson Timbs, of Marion, Indiana. Police seized Timbs’ $40,000 Land Rover when they arrested him for selling about $400 worth of heroin.
  • In an 8-1 decision on Tuesday, the US Supreme Court issued a mostly procedural ruling against Florida's death penalty system, ultimately requiring that the state change how it issues death sentences. The majority opinion, written by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, came down to procedure. Florida law requires that a jury merely recommend whether a death sentence should be applied in a capital case, with the judge making the final decision on the sentence. The US Supreme Court, in a decision that overturned the Florida Supreme Court, ruled that this scheme violates the Sixth Amendment because it takes away the defendant's right to have his sentence based on a jury's verdict.
  • In my previous column, I took issue with liberals who take a “purist” view of financial regulation—who believe it’s wrong to appoint regulators or elect lawmakers who take campaign contributions from the financial industry, or who’ve worked in that industry in the past, or who won’t pledge never to work for it in the future. The idea is to keep regulation free of corrupting influence, but in fact their position makes it less likely that we regulate the industry well. I wrote about three of the reasons in my last column: If you worry too much about purity, you lose the inside knowledge of the industry that can make regulators more effective, as well as a personal connection with firms that can actually increase the likelihood they’ll comply with the rules.
  • In a major defeat for the National Rifle Association, the Supreme Court decided this week not to take up a challenge to one of the toughest gun-control statutes in America, a law on the books in Highland Park, Illinois.
  • In a powerfully written dissent, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor criticized the thinking of some of her fellow justices after the court dismissed a case involving a police officer fatally shooting a fleeing suspect in Texas. According to Sotomayor, it was a case of “shoot first, think later.”
  • The U.S. Supreme Court will take up a fourth dispute over the Affordable Care Act in five years, as the high court issued a writ of certiorari to hear the objections from faith-based hospitals, colleges, and charities—led by female Catholic organization Little Sisters of the Poor—to the law’s mandate to cover contraceptive care for employees. The case will likely be argued this winter.
  • Religion, birth control and President Barack Obama's health care overhaul are converging in yet another high-profile dispute at the Supreme Court. The justices on Friday stepped into the fourth legal challenge to the law since Obama signed the Affordable Care Act in 2010. This time, the issue is the arrangement the Obama administration worked out to spare faith-based hospitals, colleges and charities from paying for contraceptives for women covered under their health plans, while still ensuring that those women can obtain birth control at no extra cost as the law requires.
  • Oct 04 2015
    Appeal House v. Burwell
    As general counsel of the House of Representatives in 2008, I brought the first successful lawsuit by the chamber against the executive branch. But I do not celebrate the recent House victory in federal District Court allowing it to proceed with its ill-considered litigation over appropriations under the Affordable Care Act, known colloquially as Obamacare. If not overturned, this decision could have seriously adverse consequences for our democracy, as well as for millions of needy Americans.
  • Last Friday, the powerful United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a decision evaluating the constitutionality of a ten-part gun control law. Two of the three judges upheld six parts of the law while a dissenting judge would have upheld all ten. The most important provision that was struck down limited the number of handguns a resident could register to one per month. The judges basically held that the Second Amendment cannot tolerate any limitation on the number of firearms Americans are allowed to possess.
  • Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission dropped an astounding ruling: By a 3-2 vote, it concluded that “sexual orientation is inherently a ‘sex-based consideration,’ and an allegation of discrimination based on sexual orientation is necessarily an allegation of sex discrimination under Title VII.”
  • The Obama administration on Friday issued its final rules for employers who morally object to covering birth control in their health insurance plans. The accommodation ensures that all employed women, unless they work for a place of worship, will still have their birth control covered at no cost to them, even if their employers refuse to cover it.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court’s remarkable 6-3 decision in King v. Burwell saves the Affordable Care Act from evisceration, although Obamacare will undoubtedly face a continuing pattern of guerrilla attacks from Congress, the courts, and Republican governors and state legislatures. Still, as many observers have pointed out, the core elements of the plan, including the exchanges, the subsidies, the individual mandate, the expansion of coverage in family plans to children 26 and under, and the elimination of lifetime limits and of preexisting conditions as bars to coverage, are almost certainly here to stay.
  • The 2016 presidential contenders are stretching the latitude they have to work with their independent allies more than candidates in recent elections ever dared, taking advantage of a narrowly drawn rule that separates campaigns from outside groups. For the first time, nearly every top presidential hopeful has a personalized super PAC that can raise unlimited sums and is run by close associates or former aides. Many also are being boosted by nonprofits, which do not have to disclose their donors.
  • In 2004, when Massachusetts became the first state to allow same-sex couples to marry, President George W. Bush declared support for a constitutional amendment "to protect the institution of marriage." Voters in 13 states changed their constitutions to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman. In most of those states, the vote wasn't even close. Eleven years later, the Supreme Court has now ruled that all those gay marriage bans must fall and same-sex couples have the same right to marry under the Constitution as everyone else. "No longer may this liberty be denied to them," Justice Anthony Kennedy said in his June 26 opinion for the court.
  • In their fight against the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage decision, leading conservatives have been turning to an unlikely source for inspiration: Martin Luther King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” (PDF), the collection of notes that King smuggled out of his jail cell during his eight-day detention for protesting the Jim Crow laws that sanctioned discrimination across the South.
  • On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court voted 5 to 4 to uphold the right of states to set up independent, non-partisan committees to draw the district maps that determine seats in Congress. Writing the opinion, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg said allowing voters to choose how the maps are created follows “the animat­ing principle of our Constitution that the people them­selves are the originating source of all the powers of government.”
  • Writing for the majority in the Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling that nationalized the right to marry for same-sex couples, Justice Anthony Kennedy cited another landmark case: Loving v. Virginia (1967), which struck down bans on interracial marriage. No question, Loving gets a significant assist in the upholding of Obergefell v. Hodges. So, how do the cases on interracial marriage and same-sex marriage compare? And how might such a comparison shed new light on the past, present, and future of the Court’s breakthrough ruling?
  • Yesterday’s Supreme Court decision was a monumental moment in American history, as it guaranteed the right for gays and lesbians to get married and established full marriage equality. Many politicians offered their words of support, including President Obama and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.