Is a Recipe for Justice Kennedy a Recipe for Success?

The puns are endless with a case that goes by the name Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.  The stakes though are no laughing manner. If the Court decides all of the issues brought up in the case, boundaries of the First Amendment doctrine may be rewritten as could the defining lines between religious…

Loud Voices From Below

The Supreme Court only takes a small fraction of cases petitioned to it every year and there is no perfect formula for ensuring a case makes its way to the Court.  There are, however, several signals that can help a case along the way.  Much of what matters has to do with uniformity in case…

When Justices Recuse, and When they Refuse

By Samuel Morse Over the summer, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg made the following comments about then presidential-candidate Donald Trump: “He is a faker…He has no consistency about him. He says whatever comes into his head at the moment.  He really has an ego. …How has he gotten away with not turning over his tax returns?…

Changing Work Patterns in the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court decides well fewer than 100 orally argued cases each Term. This is only a fraction of the number of cases the Supreme Court heard in the past. There is concern that Court will hear even fewer cases during the 2016 Term due to the ongoing Supreme Court vacancy. The dynamics of these cases…

Professors as Amici

Amicus briefs filed before the Supreme Court are most commonly used as a tool for interest groups use to convey their positions (for a look at interest groups’ use of amicus briefs see this article by Professor Paul Collins). This is not the sole use of such briefs though. Non-party individuals and groups that have an…