Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Supreme Court Argued Cases for Opinions to be Issued

The Supreme Court Justices are expected to take the Bench on Thursday, June 21th, to issue Opinions in Argued Cases.

South Dakota v. Wayfair (argued April 17th, 2018): This is another Case that asks the Supreme Court to Overturn its longstanding Precedent, a 26-year-old Decision holding that the Constitution Prohibits the States from Imposing a Sales Tax on Out-of-State Retailers that do not have a Brick-and-Mortar Presence, Warehouse, or Sales Operation with Sales Representatives in the State. Two years ago, South Dakota Passed a Law that required Retailers to Collect Sales Taxes if they have at least $100,000 in Sales or 200 Transactions in the State, even if they do not have a Store or Warehouse there. The State argues that, with the Explosion of Sales made over the Internet, times have changed since the Court issued its ruling in 1992, and the question whether a Retailer has a Connection to the State (a key issue in assessing the constitutionality of the tax) shouldn’t hinge on whether the Retailer has a Physical Presence there. There are still Seven Decisions left (out of 12) from April, when the case was argued, so it is almost impossible to predict who might be Writing this Opinion. I took part in the 1992 Quill Case.

Abbott v. Perez (argued April 24th, 2018): This Case involves allegations of Racial Gerrymandering, that Texas Lawmakers Drew Federal Congressional and State Legislative Districts that harmed Black and Hispanic Residents there. It began as a Challenge to Maps Drawn by the State’s Republican-controlled Legislature in 2011. In 2012, a Federal District Court drew New Maps for the Election that Year; the State Legislature Adopted those Maps the following year. Last year the District Court Invalidated Parts of the 2013 Plans, on the Ground that they Perpetuated Discrimination in the 2011 Plan, and the Supreme Court agreed to weigh in. Before the Justices can Reach the Merits of the Case, though, they must determine whether they have the Authority to hear it at all, when the District Court did not either Issue or Deny an Injunction, a Requirement before the Supreme Court can Review Appeals from a Three-Judge District Court. If the Justices do reach the Merits, they then must decide whether the State could have been Discriminating against Minority Voters when it was simply using the Maps that the District Court had Ordered it to Use.

Trump v. Hawaii (argued April 25th, 2018): This is the Challenge to President Trump’s September 2017 Order, which Limited Travel to the United States by Citizens of Eight Countries: Libya, Iran, Somalia, Syria, Yemen, North Korea, Venezuela, and Chad. Like the two similar Orders that preceded it, the September 2017 Order Drew immediate Legal Challenges. The State of Hawaii has Two Main Arguments. First, it says, although the President has Broad Power over Immigration, the Order goes too Far. Second, it contends that the Order Violates the Constitution’s Establishment Clause, which Bars the Government from, among other things, favoring One Religion over Another. The State points to the Two earlier Versions of the Order, which targeted Muslim Countries, as well as Comments and Tweets made by the President calling for a Ban on the Entry of Muslims into the United States. The White House has said those Comments and Tweets are Official Administration Text and Speech.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker
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