Supreme Court Briefing

Discussing and breaking down every decision of the United States Supreme Court, along with important historical decisions and occasionally some legal news.
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Supreme Court Briefing




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Mar 22, 2016
Not Two Blockbusters Menominee Tribe of Wis. v. United States Examining the elements of equitable tolling for a federal statute of limitations. FERC v. Electric Power Supply Assn. Examining the authority of Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to demand reduction schemes that impact interstate wholesale power rates.  
Mar 17, 2016
1. Is a challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence in a criminal case assessed based on the elements of the charges in the indictment, or on additional elements added in an erroneous jury instruction that benefited the defendant?
Mar 9, 2016
Application of the rule of the last antecedent to 18 U. S. C. §2252(a)(4), under which persons convicted of possession of child pornography are subject to a 10-year mandatory minimum sentence and an increased maxi­mum sentence if they have “a prior conviction . . . under the laws of any State relating to aggravated sexual abuse, sexual abuse, or abusive sexual conduct involving a minor or ward.”
Mar 1, 2016
Does the rule announced in Miller v. Alabama, holding that juvenile murderers prosecuted as adults cannot be automatically sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, apply retroactively?
Feb 24, 2016
Question:  Can a corporation opposing a class action make an offer of judgment to the named plaintiff in the amount of damages sought in the lawsuit and thereby render the matter moot?
Feb 16, 2016
Question Presented:  ERISA allows for suites for appropriate equitable relief to enforce the provisions of an employee benefit plan.  Does this mean that plans are limited to the type of equitable relief that existed at the time there were separate law courts and equity courts?
Jan 26, 2016
Examination of Florida’s death penalty sentencing statute. Opinion by Justice Sotomayor.  
Jan 19, 2016
Issue Presented:  Whether an indigent prisoner litigant must pay multiple monthly payments, one per each lawsuit, for lawsuits filed in federal court.
Dec 29, 2015
Recognizing a right to privacy under the United States Constitution. Opinion by Justice William O. Douglas.
Dec 22, 2015
Discussion of two new opinions from the United States Supreme Court:   White v. Wheeler and DirectTV, Inc. v. Imburgia. White v. Wheeler:  Standard of review regarding dismissal of a juror in a death penalty prosecution under the AEDPA.  
Dec 16, 2015
Can a federal district court judge deny a request for a three judge panel in a case challenging the constitutionality of congressional districts drawn by a state legislature?  
Dec 8, 2015
Discussion of the commercial activity exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act.
Nov 24, 2015
Question Presented:  Was it constitutional under the 14th Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection of the law to have public school segregated on the basis of race?
Nov 17, 2015
Question: Was a police officer protected from a lawsuit for a claim arising out of a shooting of a fugitive fleeing arrest in a car chase?
Nov 10, 2015
Does the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protect an individual’s right to possess firearms, or does it only apply to members of a state militia?  
Nov 4, 2015
Question Presented:  Did Congress have constitutional authority to create a cause of action for gender-motivated violence?  
Oct 27, 2015
Hirabayashi v. United States (1943) Upholding curfews of Japanese Americans Yasui v. United States (1943).  A companion case of Hirabayashi. Korematsu v. United States (1944).  Upholding the constitutionality of removal of Japanese Americans from the west coast. Ex Parte Endo (1944).  Finding that detention of loyal Japanese Americans was not authorized.
Oct 19, 2015
Question:  Was trial counsel constitutionally ineffective for failing to review a 1991 scientific paper on comparative lead bullet analysis?  
Oct 6, 2015
Can the people of a state, through amendment of the state constitution, give power to establish legislative districts to an independent commission and not the state legislature? This was an effort to Arizona to stop the practice of Gerrymandering.  
Sep 29, 2015
Episode Four--with special guest Dr. Rob Orman. Roe versus Wade Historical decision establishing a constitutional right to privacy protection for abortions prior to viability of the fetus.  
Sep 22, 2015
Does an an employer have to pay employees for time spent waiting to go through security screening after the work shift ended? Integrity Staffing Solutions contracts with to provide warehouse workers that remove products from shelves and pack the products for shipping.  Integrity requires the workers to go through airport-style security at the end of the shift to deter employee theft, but does not pay workers for this time.  Some workers sued in federal court, claiming that they should get paid.
Sep 15, 2015
Issue Presented:  Does the judiciary of the United States have constitutional authority to find an act of Congress void for violation of the United States Constitution.   Holding:  The federal judiciary, and ultimately the Supreme Court, has final authority to determine the constitutionality of federal statutes, and the cannot enforce an unconstitutional law.
Sep 11, 2015
In this premiere episode, we discuss the first case of last year’s term,  Lopez v. Smith.  Smith was convicted of murdering his wife using a metal fireplace log roller as a bludgeon.  He claimed that he was deprived of his federal due process rights as a result of the jury being instructed on an aiding and abetting theory of liability.  
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