JUSTICES ALITO AND KAVANAUGH HAVE A QUESTIONABLE MEETING | New Two-Minute Rule Seems To be Working Thus Far
November 1, 2019
WHAT WERE THEY THINKING|
Fix the Court shared news yesterday that JUSTICES ALITO and KAVANAUGH met Tuesday with the president of the National Organization for Marriage — an organization that submitted an amicus brief in the three cases that ask justices to determine whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination against gay, lesbian and transgender people. “It’s ethical lapses like this that doom the public’s trust of the Supreme Court — and rightly so,” FTC’s GABE ROTH said. “How can the average American believe that the justices will render an impartial decision when at least two of the nine are meeting with individuals with a clear view on how the term’s largest cases should turn out? What were the justices thinking?”
HUSH NOW HUSH|
The Washington Post did a preliminary analysis of how well the Supreme Court’s new two-minute guideline has been going, and results from the first nine cases indicate that for the most part it’s working. Some of the justices have broken the new rule, interrupting advocates in the first two minutes now designated to be free from justices’ questions. But still, the number of words from attorneys in the first twenty minutes has gone up overall, suggesting the flow of entire arguments are changing — not just the first two minutes.
OUTSIDE THE COMFORT ZONE|
“The impeachment inquiry has so far unfolded largely as a fight between Congress and the White House, with federal courts weighing in occasionally. But if the House moves to impeach President Donald Trump, thus triggering a trial in the Senate, then the chief justice of the United States will be drawn in to oversee the proceedings. That would put John Roberts, a man known for his temperance and modest view of judicial power, in an uncomfortable place: at the direct center of a bitter political battle.” That’s Tessa Berenson with TIME explaining why impeachment could be a total nightmare for CHIEF JUSTICE JOHN ROBERTS.
STRAIGHT TO HAWAII|
Greg Stohr with Bloomberg reports on an upcoming Supreme Court case involving a coral reef off Hawaii, the outcome of which could impose major limits on the U.S. Clean Water Act. Stohr writes, “The justices are set to hear arguments Nov. 6 in the case, which centers on treated wastewater that makes its way into the waters off a picturesque Maui beach. Maui County officials, backed by the Trump administration and business groups, are urging the court to say the treatment facility doesn’t need a federal permit because it pumps its wastewater into the ground, not directly into the ocean.”