Daily Meme: Supreme Court Goes Back to School

  • The new Supreme Court session heats up this week in a city languishing in political purgatory. And, listen up tourists, the show is open for visitors, unlike most attractions and destinations in D.C. (and, while you're there you can even pick up some sweet John Marshall bling). 
  • Although I'm sure certain justices wish they could sit at home watching their Seinfeld CDs just like all those furloughed federal employees.
  • Tomorrow's oral arguments are for the first blockbuster case on the docketMcCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, the sequel to the Citizens United decision from 2010.
  • Law professor Richard Hasen thinks that "if the government loses big, it could mark the beginning of the end of any limits on campaign contributions given directly to candidates in federal, state, and local elections." 
  • Norm Ornstein writes that if the aggregate political spending limits are struck down in the case, "brace yourselves for a political system that will make the Gilded Age look like the a golden era of clean politics."
  • What about the rest of the cases? NPR alleges that "the docket this year has nothing quite as riveting as last year's same-sex-marriage cases, or the challenge to President Obama's health care overhaul from the term before."
  • The executive director of the Supreme Court Institute at Georgetown University, came to the opposite conclusion. "This term is deeper in important cases than either of the prior two terms."
  • Today, oral arguments will be heard for the case between a man "known for his jets, yachts and passion for cricket" and those who'd like to sue him for the $7 billion Ponzi scheme he ran. 
  • In a sequel to last year's University of Texas affirmative-action case, the court wil hear a case on a law prohibiting affirmative-action measures in Michigan. 
  • The court will also weigh in on presidential powers, deciding whether executive recess appointments are unconstitutional, as decided by the D.C. Circuit Court.
  • Other cases likely to draw attention are the Upstate New York public-prayer case—the first Supreme Court case involving prayer in 30 years—and the Oklahoma abortion case. 
  • Cases on environmental regulation, racial discrimination, and class actionsare also on the stuffed docket. 
  • Anthony Kennedy will likely prove the crucial tiebreaker in many of these controversial cases...
  • ... and it remains to be seen how influential the conservative groups out lobbying in full force will have on the final decisions.

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