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The Cockle Bur Blog

Legal minds on legal matters and whatever else strikes our fancy.

30 May, 2023

Circuit Court Newsletter: May 2023

2023-05-30T16:24:06-05:00May 30th, 2023|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit Judge Selya Way The City of Providence, Rhode Island, will rename Fulton Street, between Memorial Street and Exchange Street and adjacent to the U.S. Courthouse, "Judge Selya Way," in honor of Providence native and First Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Bruce M. Selya. More information is [...]

17 May, 2023

Memo: SCOTUS Enters Scramble Mode

2023-05-17T09:33:06-05:00May 17th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

The Supreme Court is entering the final stretch of its annual session, with just about six weeks remaining to resolve a significant number of cases. Among the pressing matters still awaiting their decisions are issues that carry far-reaching implications for society. These include the future of race-based admissions practices at colleges, the scope of federal [...]

16 May, 2023

Brad Garcia—First Latino Appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit

2023-05-16T10:39:05-05:00May 16th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

In a step toward increased diversity in the judicial system, Brad Garcia, a former partner at O’Melveny & Myers, has been confirmed as the first Latino to serve on the prestigious U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Garcia’s 53-40 Senate confirmation vote demonstrates support from both sides of the political spectrum. Garcia's confirmation [...]

9 May, 2023

Supreme Court Intervenes in Richard Glossip’s Execution

2023-05-09T11:14:03-05:00May 9th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

Less than two weeks before Richard Glossip was scheduled to be executed on May 18th for the murder for hire of his former boss, the US Supreme Court intervened and granted a stay of execution. This is not the first time Glossip's execution has been stayed--in fact, this would be the state's 10th attempt to [...]

13 Apr, 2023

Who Are the U.S. Supreme Court Justices?

2023-04-13T13:40:16-05:00April 13th, 2023|Tags: , , |

Nine Justices make up the current Supreme Court: one Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices. The Honorable John Roberts, Jr. is the 17th Chief Justice of the United States, and there have been 104 Associate Justices in the Court’s history.  Supreme Court justices serve lifetime appointments after being nominated by the president and approved by [...]

11 Apr, 2023

Conflicting Court of Appeals Mifepristone Rulings

2023-04-11T14:40:20-05:00April 11th, 2023|Tags: , , , , |

On April 7, 2023, two conflicting rulings on the provision of mifepristone—the drug used for medication abortion—were issued by two separate federal court judges, one in Texas and one in Washington State. U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas Judge Kacsmaryk issued a preliminary injunction in his case, Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. [...]

6 Apr, 2023

Are Supreme Court Justices Bound by Ethics Rules?

2023-04-06T10:46:54-05:00April 6th, 2023|Tags: , , |

Answer: No!  The nine U.S. Supreme Court Justices are the only federal judges not bound by the Code of Conduct for U.S. Judges, which goes beyond the basic ethics laws enacted after the Watergate scandal and creates uniformity around thorny issues like recusals and participation in political activities. History: The Code of Conduct for U.S. [...]

27 Mar, 2023

Circuit Court Newsletter: March 2023

2023-03-27T14:52:52-05:00March 27th, 2023|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit Order Implementing Procedures for the Filing of Highly Sensitive Documents On February 9, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit issued this order implementing new procedures for the filing of highly sensitive documents (HSDs). HSDs are documents containing information that is likely [...]

16 Mar, 2023

What Makes for a Controversial Supreme Court Decision?

2023-03-16T14:54:03-05:00March 16th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

The Supreme Court is the United States’ most powerful court of law. The Court’s rulings routinely shape the course of American public policy. It ended its last term with the conservative justices bending the law sharply rightward in a series of momentous decisions on abortion, gun rights, environmental regulations and religious rights that will reverberate [...]

14 Mar, 2023

Supreme Court Poised for Controversial Finish

2023-03-14T13:14:33-05:00March 14th, 2023|Tags: , , , |

During the last week of June 2022, the Court issued landmark decisions overturning abortion rights (Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization) and expanding gun rights (New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen), demonstrating a shift of power to the Court’s new 6-3 conservative supermajority. Legal commentators have long speculated that the Justices prefer [...]