Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Part II: Justiciability of Corporate Claims

Part II of the opinion, dealing substantively with whether Hobby Lobby can state a claim for relief under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.


Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Part I: Background and Standards of Law

The first part of the Ordinary Court’s treatment of one of this year’s most-publicized legal cases. To begin, we must understand the factual and legal landscape.


Poor Partners

In classical art, you almost never see Athena and Aphrodite depicted together. There’s a reason for that, and it’s not the same reason you never see Clark Kent and Superman in the same room.


The Ethics and Incentives of Socialized Law

Noam Scheiber makes a radical suggestion. Eric Posner has lots of reasons why it’ll never work. Burt Likko says, “There’s a few things neither of you bright fellows have thought of.”

Legal, Restricted Abortion Is Here to Stay

Today, on the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, President Obama reaffirmed his commitment to “the decision’s guiding principle: that every woman should be able to make her own choices about her body and her health.” Also today, thousands of pro-life advocates gathered in snowy Washington D.C. to participate in the annual March for Life.…


Dreaming of the Guild

Now, before you get all in a huff about the California Supreme Court admitting an undocumented alien to practice law, at least read Burt Likko’s digest of the ruling.


Oyez, Oyez

It’s the first Monday in October. Burt Likko offers a preview of the high points of the Supreme Court’s docket, and some other interesting notes.


Do the Unborn Dream of Jerry Springer? : How the creepiest, most sensational story of 2013 could be a game-changer for Pro-Life advocates

A sensational, bizarre, made-for-tabloids crime forces Tod Kelly to reconsider his own position on abortion – and wonder if it might force others to do the same.

Sandwiches, cont.

In preparing for my recent instructional guide on sandwich making, I asked the MD crowd whether a hot dog qualified.  Responses were mixed.  Included in the conversation were whether burritos ought be classified as such. It turns out their is legal precedent for just such a question: “A sandwich is not commonly understood to include…

Human life is not too controversial

The rhetorical case for protecting the unborn has succeeded. The debate is over.  It would be, that is, had the Supreme Court not issued – in Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s own words – a “difficult to justify,” “heavy-handed judicial intervention” in Roe v. Wade 40 years ago.  Today, nearly two-thirds of Americans support making abortion generally illegal after the first three months of pregnancy.  A staggering four-fifths support bans in the last three months.  So if the pro-choice movement is […]

Big Wednesday 2013

I thought this would only have been a one-day thing. But we’re here on the third day in a row of huge decisions from the Supreme Court. At last, we have rulings on the same-sex marriage cases. [Discussion at NaPP]

Big Monday 2013

Today is the last scheduled day for decisions and opinions scheduled by the Supreme Court. In the comments to this post, I’ll be glossing the Voting Rights Act, affirmative action, and same-sex marriage cases.* And, of course, setting up a forum for your comments on them too. [See you at NaPP!] UPDATE:  Here’s my first…

For The Cold Case Files

Does the Fourth Amendment allow law enforcement to gather an arrestee’s genetic sequence and compare it with a large FBI database of genetic material gathered from old, unsolved crimes? [Continued at NaPP]

Gosnell and our inadequate public discourse on abortion

Tim Carney wrote yesterday that when Obama was a state senator, he “repeatedly voted against legislation requiring hospitals to care for babies born during abortions” because “[s]uch laws might somehow be used in the future to infringe on abortion’s legality.”  Carney argues that “Gosnell’s method for aborting babies wasn’t substantially different from a procedure Obama enthusiastically defends.”  Today, the White House has no comment on Gosnell, noting that it concerns on an ongoing legal matter.  A totally valid response—is what […]

Antonin Scalia is either a fool or a liar

Scalia: “I take no position on whether it’s harmful or not, but it’s certainly true there is no answer to that scientific question…” — Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) March 26, 2013 This is why the support of the American Academy of Pediatrics matters. When Justice Scalia spouts balderdash like that Tweeted above with regard to…

Does Opposition to Abortion Demand Certainty That the Fetus Is a Person?

I agree with Ned Resnikoff that the issue of abortion hinges on the question of personhood, but I am not sure the question of personhood as related to nascent human life has to be answered definitively before one may have an ethical basis to avoid (or morally permit) lethal violence against it. We may not,…

Blackmun on Roe, 14 Years Later

Via Digby I see this 1987 interview between Bill Moyers and Harry Blackmun, former Supreme Court Justice and author of Roe v. Wade. One thing to understand about Blackmun is that despite whatever assumptions you might have about his politics, he was actually something much rarer than an activist lefty: a moderate-to-liberal Republican. Appointed by Nixon, no less!…

A Great Case Out Of Sequence: Bad Valentines, Bank Robbers, And Taxes

Note: This post is part of our League Symposium on Guns In America. You can read the introductory post for the Symposium here. To see a list of all posts in the Symposium so far, click here. While I usually post my Great Cases at my sub-blog (example) rather than here on the front page,…