JUSTICE STEVENS LIES IN REPOSE AT SCOTUS | Stevens’ Invisible Hand On Abortion | What Wins At The Supreme Court
July 22, 2019
Members of the Supreme Court today gathered in the Great Hall to honor JUSTICE JOHN PAUL STEVENS who died last week. His body was returned to the high court where it lies in repose. The casket bearing Stevens arrived at the court just before 9:30 a.m., and more than 80 of his former clerks were lined up on the building’s grand steps. PRESIDENT TRUMP and MELANIA TRUMP also came to the Supreme Court to pay their respects, as did former justices ANTHONY KENNEDY and DAVID SOUTER.
In The New York Times, Linda Greenhouse covers what she refers to as “the invisible hand” of JUSTICE JOHN PAUL STEVENS on abortion. She says, “His approach to abortion cases, and the way that approach changed over the decades, exemplifies the kind of judge he was: attentive to facts, open to argument, impatient with intellectual shortcuts, persuaded that civility offered a more reliable route to success than invective. To trace his role in shaping the court’s abortion jurisprudence is to better understand the man and his role on the court overall.”
FOR GOD AND COUNTRY|
Speaking of reproductive rights, in The Wall Street Journal Clarke D. Forsythe argues for a smarter way to overturn Roe v. Wade and offers up three legal factors state legislators need to keep in mind as they enact pro-life laws.
“He was the quintessential gentleman and scholar. But commendable personal qualities do not always translate into judicial virtues, particularly when it comes to the objective and consistent application of established rules of law.” That’s Barry McDonald writing in The New York Times about what he views as the flaws of JUSTICE STEVENS’ “flexible” judicial approach.
POD DU JOUR|
On the latest Amicus podcast from Slate, Dahlia Lithwick reflects on the passing of JUSTICE JOHN PAUL STEVENS, and “the more-than-symbolic shift from his jurisprudence, his character, to our current state of affairs at the high court and beyond.” Mary Anne Franks of the University of Miami Law School also joins the podcast to talk about her book, The Cult of the Constitution, and how growing up among Christian fundamentalists helped her write a book about constitutional extremists.
ADVOCACY VS. IDEOLOGY|
A new study from two political scientists finds that experienced lawyers who advocate before the Supreme Court render measurably better results than first-timers. Michael J. Nelson, one of the study’s authors and a political scientist at Penn State, said, “From a political science perspective, people have been wedded to the idea that it’s ideology all the way down. But having an attorney who has argued at least one case before makes you both much more likely to win the case and to attract a particular justice’s vote.” Adam Liptak with The New York Times reports on the study’s results.
TODAY IN HISTORY|
On this day in 1937, the U.S. Senate rejected PRESIDENT FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT’S proposal to add more justices to the Supreme Court.