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Supreme Court Docket Update-Pre-Election Edition

by: tmess2

Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 00:36:46 AM EDT

The Supreme Court has one last conference (Friday) and one last handdown (Monday) before the election. 

Looking at what is on their plate currently, there are two major issues that the media is keeping their eyes on (not that you have heard too much about the court while the campaign is taking place).  The first issue is the Voting Rights Act.  The second issue is gay marriage.

At the present time, two Voting Righs Act cases (both challenging the continued constitutionality of pre-clearance under Section 5)have applications for review (technically petitions for writs of certiorari) pending.  Both were supposed to have been on last week's conference, but the Justices asked for the record in one of the two cases last week, thereby postponing consideration.  As the lower court on Section 5 is the US District Court for the District of Columbia, it did not take too long to get the record, and it is back on for this Friday's conference.  Unless the Supreme Court Justices desire to be the lead story on the news on the day before an election, it is likely that the Supreme Court will decide that they want to think about it for one more week and reschedule it for the November 9 conference.  There will almost certainly be some cases on which the Supreme Court grants review on Monday as they barely have enough cases (20 cases) for their January and February sittings and need twenty-four more grants over the next three months to fill the March and April sittings, but any grants on Monday will likely be in the most boring technical cases imaginable.

The gay marriage cases -- the California Proposition 8 case, 6 cases challenging Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, and 1 case challenging Arizona's version of the Defense of Marriage Act -- are all currently set for the November 20 conference, well after the election.

tmess2 :: Supreme Court Docket Update-Pre-Election Edition

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