Attorney Arguments 2016/2017

The Supreme Court released its final argument calendar of the term with thirteen arguments slated for April. Although this term started out slow, most likely due to the Justices’ apprehension at the possibility of reaching equal divisions in cases, case grants picked up pace especially after the presidential election. Though we won’t see a new…

Scaling Judge Gorsuch’s Opinions: Hints of a Possible Centrist

Two words that are regularly thrown around when discussing the Supreme Court (and politics generally) are “liberal” and “conservative.”  On this note, recently a question that has gained much traction has to do with how liberal or conservative a Justice Judge Gorsuch will be if confirmed to the Court.  A large problem with these terms…

What’s at Stake in a Supreme Court Ruling in the Trump Immigration Battle?

The Supreme Court’s role as a co-equal branch of the federal government may soon be put to the test.  While various issues relating to President Trump’s decisions are percolating in lower courts, one that has received much attention recently is his Executive Order on Immigration.  Yesterday the Ninth Circuit heard oral arguments regarding the temporary…

Expectations for Vote Timing on the Gorsuch Nomination

Post by Samuel Morse Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch has a fairly pristine record and is himself one of the least controversial nominees to the Court in recent memory. This however will not be enough to make for a smooth confirmation.  After Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to act on Merrick Garland’s nomination, there…

Judge Gorsuch by the Numbers and Decisions

Speculation is abound regarding President Trump’s pick for Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch. Questions range from: “Who is he?” and “How will he rule” to the more specific “Will he help overturn Roe v. Wade.” While answers to the last two questions are anyone’s guess, answers to the first may shed light on all…

The Justices, Gender Equity, and Oral Arguments

Below is the abstract from my new article, Echoes from a Gendered Court: Examining the Justices’ Interactions During Supreme Court Oral Arguments, co-authored by Rebecca Gill: Supreme Court oral arguments are the only publicly scheduled opportunities for the Justices and advocates to directly engage in discussions about a case. There are few rules to regulate…

Bringing Cases in an Unusual Term: Top Petitioners and Cert Amici

There are certain criteria that indicate or signal the importance of a Supreme Court petition to the Court –experienced SCOTUS counsel on the cert briefs, federal governmental involvement, and cert stage amicus briefs – just to name a few.  Although there is no surefire way to predict whether the Court will grant cert in a…

Supreme Court Review of The Short-Listers’ Decisions

With one day until his inauguration, President Elect Trump has yet to nominate a candidate for the vacant seat on the Supreme Court.  While he initially released a list of twenty-one possible candidates for the vacancy, CBS’ Jan Crawford reports that the list of candidates may be furthered narrowed to five – including 11th Circuit Judge…

The Most Important Cases Already Argued This Term in SCOTUS

Over the last few years the Supreme Court has heard multiple landmark cases.    The issues in these cases ranged from abortion to marriage equality and from affirmative action in schools to national healthcare.  So far this Term the Court has not heard cases of the same magnitude.  While cases like Beckles v. United States may…

Cert Analytics

The Supreme Court currently grants around eighty cases per year for its merits review.  These cases tackle issues that often divide federal courts.  The Court takes up some cases due to the national importance of resolving certain issues.  With some of these cases that deal with issues that divide segments of the populations like abortion…

Amicus Oral Argument Participation Over Time

Amici regularly participate in Supreme Court oral arguments.  Recently these appearances have been dominated by attorneys from the United States Office of the Solicitor General (OSG). While OSG attorneys have historically argued more cases as amici than other attorneys, there is much less diversity in the last decade.  In fact, the bulk of non-OSG amici…