Friday round-up

The Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony yesterday from Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh and Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers. Our live blog of the hearing is here; Jon Levitan rounded up early coverage and commentary for this blog. For the Associated Press, Lisa Mascaro and Alan Fram report that “Senate Republicans are plowing forward with a committee vote Friday on … Kavanaugh’s nomination … after an extraordinary and emotional day of testimony where he denied accusations of sexual assault as ‘unequivocally’ false” and “[h]is accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, testified that she was ‘100 percent’ certain Kavanaugh attacked her.” For The Wall Street Journal, Janet Hook and others report that the hearing “laid bare the enormous stakes as the GOP tries to advance a nomination that would tilt the high court to the right and Democrats push for a thorough investigation into sexual-misconduct allegations in the wake of the #MeToo movement.”

Yesterday, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in five cases they considered at their conference on Monday. Andrew Hamm highlights the new grants for this blog.

In an episode of the Heritage Foundation’s SCOTUS 101 podcast, Elizabeth Slattery and John-Michael Seibler “preview a few cases the justices will hear in their first week back.” For The Economist, Steven Mazie observes that the cases on the new term’s docket “may not grab headlines,” but that “important questions loom,” and that “[i]n their first week back the justices will hear arguments on the fate of an endangered amphibian, the separation of powers and whether a man with a mental illness can be executed.”

Briefly:

  • At his eponymous blog, Ross Runkel has a video preview of New Prime Inc. v. Oliveira, which asks whether an exemption in the Federal Arbitration Act for transportation workers involved in interstate commerce applies to independent contractors and “[w]ho decides that question — a court or an arbitrator?”
  • At Bloomberg Law, Jordan Rubin reports on a recently filed cert petition challenging Florida’s “’blanket ban’” on Prison Legal News in the state’s prisons, noting that “[t]he filing casts doubt on the Sunshine State’s alleged rationale for impounding the long-running publication—one prisoners rely on to keep up with news relevant to their incarcerated lives.”
  • At the Cato Institute’s Cato at Liberty blog, Ilya Shapiro urges the justices to review Animal Legal Defense Fund v. Department of Homeland Security, in which “several California-based environmental groups are challenging a law allowing the department secretary to waive any and all laws to speed building of the southern border-wall,” arguing that “such unlimited discretion violates the separation of powers.”
  • At The National Law Journal (subscription or registration required), Mike Scarcella reports that in recent remarks at Georgetown Law, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg “lauded the ongoing women’s cultural movement confronting mistreatment and the long silence of victims.”

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