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Don't Sleep on SCOTUS


Here’s another really important story that the drama over the shutdown has been pushing to the sidelines. The Supreme Court is teeing up several potentially groundbreaking rulings. SCOTUS agreed this week to hear a case about whether or not the EPA has the power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and factories under the Clean Air Act. It’s a case that could potentially check President Obama’s signature green policy measure and that has major implications for America’s coal industry.

The Court has already heard arguments on an affirmative action case relating to a Michigan law that prevents colleges from discriminating or showing preferential treatment based on sex or race. The Los Angeles Times outlines the other big cases on the docket:

The justices are being asked to hear cases from Oklahoma in which they could uphold limits on the use of the abortion pill and require pregnant women seeking abortions to undergo ultrasound tests to see the fetus…. By next spring, the justices are likely to revisit part of President Obama’s healthcare law to decide a religious-rights challenge to the requirement that large private employers provide their workers with coverage for contraceptives…

The upcoming term “is actually deeper in important cases than either of the last two terms,” said Irving Gornstein, executive director of the Supreme Court Institute at the Georgetown University’s law school.

Some of the foundations of the modern regulatory state are up for review, and whatever the justices decide, this year will be a reminder of the power of the judicial branch.

[Supreme Court image courtesy of Shutterstock]

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  • Anthony

    WRM, your brief brings to mind observation made years ago in University setting: the court’s systemic mandate under the Constitution has been to act as a check on the democratic majority and as a protector of private contract, credit, and property; with the caveat that, SCOTUS is qualified in the above by pressure exerted by various advocacy groups and the political climate of the times as well as political composition of court’s majority (setting was class on formation of capital and The Supremely Political Court).

  • Corlyss

    “It’s a case that could potentially check President Obama’s signature green policy measure and that has major implications for America’s coal industry.”

    After a more conservative court whiffed on the original ruling, which was asinine, and Roberts did that execrable “comity of the court” reversal on Obamacare and then, after determining the individual mandate was indeed a tax, failing to send it back to Congress because the tax had not been created IAW Congress’ own stated procedures for taxes, I ain’t holding out any hope that these geniuses are going to stand up da Man on his plans to destroy this country.

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