Episode 37 – The Constitution, Incorporated

One very intriguing case on the Supreme Court’s 2018-2019 docket is unlikely to make big headlines or be featured on the Sunday news shows.  In fact, it’s likely you’ll only hear about it from this podcast! Timbs v. Indiana illustrates a phenomenon that even lawyers can forget: that the Constitution’s…

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Episode 36 – Libel to Stay

I get the ideas for the subjects of these podcasts from a variety of sources.  Some podcasts are suggested by decisions made, or soon to be made, by the Supreme Court or lower courts.  Others bounce off of controversies about legislative or other policy-changing proposals.  Occasionally, a public statement by…

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Episode 34 – A Tough Roe? Pt. 2

So…having set the stage in Part One for the potential reversal of Roe v. Wade in the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey decision, here’s the skinny on how Roe narrowly escaped: Justice Sandra O’Connor defied expectations by joining two other presumably anti-Roe justices to form a trio affirming its “central…

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Episode 33 – A Tough Roe? Pt. 1

One of (if not THE) most controversial aspects of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to succeed Justice Anthony Kennedy is what Kavanaugh’s elevation could mean for the modern scheme of abortion rights ushered in by the landmark 1973 case, Roe v. Wade.  President Trump’s promise to “put[ ] pro-life justices on…

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Episode 32 – Decisions, Please!

In less than a month, the Supreme Court’s 2017-2018 Term will end – in a flurry of high-profile, controversial and contentious decisions.  Still undecided cases when this podcast was recorded probe the constitutionality of the Trump Administration Travel ban, the legitimacy of a baker declining on religious grounds to make…

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Episode 31 – Wanna Bet?

The Court’s mid-May decision in Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association got substantial news coverage because of the outcome.  A six-justice majority in Murphy invalidated the 1990’s Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which had prevented state and local governments from operating sports-betting schemes or authorizing private casinos and individuals…

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Episode 30 – It’s Not Just Politics

If you follow Supreme Court decision-making – and, after all, if you listen to this podcast – you’ve probably noticed the tendency of Supreme Court watchers, whether they are highly respected reporters or less thoughtful armchair pundits, to portray decisions as simple battles between “conservatives” and “liberals.”  Yet, attributing Supreme…

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Episode 29 – They Say Jump…

Lawyers and laypersons alike can fall into the habit of thinking that, once the Supreme Court rules on the meaning and application of the Constitution, that settles the matter. Sure, we remember President Eisenhower having to send national-guard troops into Little Rock, Arkansas to enforce a school desegregation order.  And…

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Episode 28 – Guns, Young Adults & The Constitution

The tragic school shooting in Parkland, Florida shined a bright spotlight on the fact that 18-, 19- & 20-year olds can buy assault weapons in many states, even though they can’t purchase alcohol and exercise other privileges. Bills to raise the minimum-age for some weapons purchases are being seriously discussed…

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