MENU

MULTIMEDIA

Obergefell v. Hodges - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 6-26-15 featuring John Eastman and Ilya Shapiro
John C. Eastman, Ilya Shapiro June 26, 2015

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court decided Obergefell v. Hodges. This highly anticipated case concerned two questions. The first is whether states are required by the Fourteenth Amendment to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The second question is whether states are required by the Fourteenth Amendment to recognize the marriages of same-sex couples who were lawfully married in a different state.

In a 5-4 opinion delivered by Justice Kennedy, the Supreme Court held that States are required by the Fourteenth Amendment to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples. On the second question, the Supreme Court held that States are required by the Fourteenth Amendment to recognize the marriages of same-sex couples lawfully married out-of-state. 

Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan joined the opinion of the Court. Chief Justice Roberts filed a dissenting opinion which Justices Scalia and Thomas joined. Justice Scalia filed a dissenting opinion, which Justice Thomas joined. Justice Thomas filed a dissenting opinion, which Justice Scalia joined. Justice Alito filed a dissenting opinion which Justices Scalia and Thomas joined. The judgment of the Sixth Circuit was reversed.

To discuss the case, we have John Eastman, who is the Henry Salvatori Professor of Law & Community Service at Chapman University Fowler School of Law and Ilya Shapiro, who is Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies at the Cato Institute.

King v. Burwell - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 6-26-15 featuring Jonathan Adler and Josh Blackman
Jonathan H. Adler, Josh Blackman June 26, 2015

On June 25, 2015, the Supreme Court issued its decision in King v. Burwell. The question in this highly anticipated case is whether the Affordable Care Act authorizes the Internal Revenue Service to offer tax credit subsidies for individuals purchasing health insurance through federal exchanges.

In an opinion delivered by the Chief Justice, the Court held by a vote of 6-3 that the tax credit subsidies authorized by section 36B of the Affordable Care Act for individuals purchasing health insurance through state exchanges are also available to individuals in states that have a federal exchange.  The judgment of the Fourth Circuit was affirmed.

Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan joined the opinion of the Court. Justice Scalia filed a dissenting opinion which Justices Thomas and Alito joined.

To discuss the case, we have Prof. Josh Blackman, who is an Assistant Professor of Law at the South Texas College of Law and Prof. Jonathan Adler who is the Johan Verheij Memorial Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Business Law and Regulation at Case Western Reserve University School of Law.

Ohio v. Clark - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 6-23-15 featuring Michael O'Shea.
Michael O'Shea June 23, 2015

On June 18, 2015, the Supreme Court decided Ohio v. Clark. This case involved two questions regarding the Sixth Amendment’s Confrontation Clause: (1) whether an individual’s obligation to report suspected child abuse makes that individual an agent of law enforcement for purposes of the Confrontation Clause; and (2) whether a child’s out-of-court statements to a teacher in response to the teacher’s concerns about potential child abuse qualify as “testimonial” statements subject to the Confrontation Clause. The Supreme Court of Ohio rejected Clark’s challenge to his conviction on these grounds.

The United States Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the Supreme Court of Ohio by a vote of 9-0 and remanded the case. In an opinion delivered by Justice Alito and joined by the Chief Justice and Justices Breyer, Kennedy, Sotomayor, and Kagan, the Court held that because neither the child nor his teachers had the primary purpose of assisting in Clark’s prosecution, the child’s statements did not implicate the Confrontation Clause and therefore were admissible at trial. Justice Scalia, joined by Justice Ginsburg, filed an opinion concurring in the judgment.  Justice Thomas also filed an opinion concurring in the judgment. 

To discuss the case, we have Prof. Michael O’Shea, who is a Professor of Law at the Oklahoma City University School of Law. 

Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc and Reed v. Town of Gilbert - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 6-23-15 featuring Eugene Volokh.
Eugene Volokh June 23, 2015

 

On June 18, 2015, the Supreme Court issued two highly anticipated decisions in free speech cases, Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc., and Reed v. Town of Gilbert.

Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc. concerned two First Amendment issues: the first was whether content displayed on specialty license plates issued by the state is government speech immune from First Amendment prohibition on viewpoint discrimination; the second was whether Texas engaged in viewpoint discrimination when it rejected a specialty license plate design which included an image of a Confederate Flag.

In an opinion delivered by Justice Breyer, the Court held by a vote of 5-4 that Texas’s specialty license plate designs constitute government speech, and Texas was therefore entitled to reject the design proposed by Sons of Confederate Veterans. The decision of the Fifth Circuit to the contrary was reversed. Justices Thomas, Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kagan joined Justice Breyer’s majority opinion. A dissenting opinion was filed by Justice Alito, joined by Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Scalia and Kennedy.

Reed v. Town of Gilbert involved a First Amendment challenge to the sign code for Gilbert, Arizona, which imposes more stringent restrictions on signs directing the public to meetings of nonprofit groups--including churches--than on other signs. By a vote of 9-0, the Court reversed the judgment of the Ninth Circuit (which had rejected the challenge) and remanded the case.  Justice Thomas, joined by the Chief Justice and Justices Scalia, Kennedy, Alito, and Sotomayor, held that the Code’s sign provisions were content-based restrictions of speech that could not survive strict scrutiny. Justice Alito also filed a concurring opinion, joined by Justices Kennedy and Sotomayor. Justice Breyer filed an opinion concurring in the judgment. Justice Kagan, joined by Justices Ginsburg and Breyer, also filed an opinion concurring in the judgment.

To discuss the case, we have Professor Eugene Volokh, the Gary T. Schwartz Professor of Law at the UCLA School of Law.

Wellness International Network v. Sharif - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 6-22-15 featuring Thomas Plank.
Thomas Plank June 22, 2015

On May 26, 2015, the Supreme Court delivered its opinion in Wellness International Network, Limited v. Sharif.  This case relates to the Court’s 2011 decision in Stern v. Marshall, in which the Court held that Congress violated Article III by authorizing bankruptcy judges to decide certain claims for which litigants are constitutionally entitled to an Article III adjudication. Here the question is whether Article III allows bankruptcy judges to adjudicate such claims with the parties’ consent. 

In an opinion delivered by Justice Sotomayor, the Court held by a vote of 6-3 that Article III permits bankruptcy judges to adjudicate Stern claims with the parties’ knowing and voluntary consent. The judgment of the Seventh Circuit was reversed and the case was remanded. 

Justice Sotomayor’s opinion was joined by Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Kagan, and by Justice Alito in part.  Justice Alito filed an opinion concurring in part and concurring in the judgment. The Chief Justice filed a dissenting opinion, joined by Justice Scalia and by Justice Thomas as to Part I.  Justice Thomas also filed a dissenting opinion. 

To discuss the case, we have Thomas Plank, who is the Joel A. Katz Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Tennessee College of Law.