Two things are absolutely clear about this Supreme Court term. One, it's once again been a very good term for the Chamber of Commerce. And, two, it's been an even better one for the business community writ large.
This is deeply troubling territory. Are we going to say that the government has the authority to tell religious individuals or groups that their beliefs about the significance of an action or subject are simply wrong?
Was the court so overly-focused on the potential indirect violation of religious freedoms of one set of Americans that they forgot to consider the actual religious freedoms of millions of others?
This decision may well presage how the Court will rule on the constitutionality of the NSA metadata collection program when that issue inevitably comes before it.
On this final day of the term, the Supreme Court will be handing down a decision with potentially broad implications not only for the rights of women and workers, but also for corporate personhood and religious liberty.
This was a week of winning, losing, and sometimes winning by losing. On Wednesday, the Obama administration finally won the wide-ranging consensus it's always wanted by losing to a unanimous Supreme Court, which ruled decisively that police must get a warrant to search a cell phone during an arrest. On Thursday we all lost, as former Senate Majority Leader Howard Baker passed away. Known as "the Great Conciliator," he was a symbol of a more moderate -- and more effective -- Republican Party. In the World Cup, Uruguayan star Luis Suarez avoided using his hands, but not his teeth. For his toddler-worthy meltdown he was banned nine matches and given a four-month time-out. Meanwhile, the U.S. won by losing, advancing to the knockout stage of the tournament even while losing to Germany, thanks to Portugal beating Ghana. The U.S. fell only one goal short of remaining unbeaten, but, unlike Italy, they at least remained unbitten.
The end of June is an important time on the political calendar, but it is one which most Americans don't really think about all that much. It's hard to fault this, so let's take a quick run through the important decisions handed down in the past week.
In a very general sense, in evaluating the constitutionality of law restricting speech, the Court has drawn an important distinction between laws that restrict speech because of its message ("content-based" laws) and laws that restrict speech without regard to its message ("content-neutral" laws).
While you ponder whether to join John Boehner's lawsuit, take our Week to Week news quiz to see who else is mad at the week's newsmakers.
If either Ginsburg or Breyer resign this summer we can expect a contentious, drawn out, and divisive confirmation battle. But that is nothing like we are bound to see if they wait until after November when odds are the Republicans will take the Senate.
The Supreme Court's Noel Canning decision upholds the D.C. Circuit's outcome, but repudiates its reasoning and leaves the elected branches with pretty much the same tools already available to them to foster either friction or cooperation. All in all, it's a pretty good day for constitutionalism.
It appears that Chief Justice Roberts feels that if a social media company states that they have access to view and analyze your posts, content, and relationships, then that ought to be fair game for the government (and law enforcement), too.
What the SCOTUS historically has not engaged in since the days of the Robber Barons, though, seems to be pattern and practice of the Roberts SCOTUS: Libertarian pro-corporate, anti-government, anti-citizen rulings that serve the most narrow and wealthy of interests.
One year ago today, in two historic decisions, the Supreme Court struck down the heart of the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act" in Windsor v. United States. In an instant, the world changed forever.
According to the Supreme Court, police need a warrant to search the cellphones of people they arrest. The unanimous decision, which was handed down this week, is being heralded as a major victory for privacy rights and a landmark case with implications far beyond cellphones.
Thursday's Supreme Court ruling in McCullen vs. Coakley, despite the unified outcome and facade, makes it clear that abortion is and will continue to be a wedge issue dividing the justices for years to come.