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Life of the Law

Justices on the Move

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

It’s hard to imagine Supreme Court Justices working outside of Washington, D.C. But for the first half of our country’s history, they spent much of their time traveling as circuit court judges. And it may have made them better Supreme Court justices.

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Life of the Law

Judging Steinbeck’s Lennie

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

In 2002, the Supreme Court ruled that it is unconstitutional to execute people with mental disabilities. But the Court left it up to individual states to define mentally disabled. After the Texas legislature failed to agree on a definition,

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WNYC News

In a Busy News Week, Some Say the Real Issues are Ignored

Friday, June 28, 2013

Immigration reform, affirmative action, voting rights, gay marriage -- it's been a busy week for lawmakers and jurists, one that will likely reshape the country. But in some pockets of the city, the issues that matter aren't what's necessarily in the headlines.

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The Takeaway

SCOTUS Decisions Bring Landmark Change

Thursday, June 27, 2013

It may be hard to believe, but just one month ago, the United States was a very different place to live. There were historic Supreme Court decisions out on affirmative action, voting rights and same-sex marriage, but there were also other decisions issued that some may have missed. Contributing their thoughts are Ron Christie, Republican political strategist, Farai Chideya, distinguished writer in residence at New York University’s Journalism Institute, and Jeffrey Rosen, professor of law at George Washington University, and President of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia.

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The Takeaway

SCOTUS Decisions Bring Landmark Change, Space Bacteria, Business Tips From Trappist Monks

Thursday, June 27, 2013

SCOTUS Decisions Bring Landmark Change | Business Tips From Trappist Monks | NASA's Asteroid Grand Challenge | The Evolving Immigration Bill | Foreign Press Coverage of Mandela's Health Raises Concerns | Employment Discrimination and Sexual Orientation

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The Brian Lehrer Show

SCOTUS: Good for Business

Thursday, June 27, 2013

The affirmative action and gay marriage rulings got most of the headlines, but several of this year's smaller Supreme Court rulings had a decidedly pro-business bent. New York Times Supreme Court reporter Adam Liptak discusses how the Chamber of Commerce pulled off a "clean sweep", and why the Roberts court is so friendly to corporate America.

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WNYC News

7 Benefits For Gay Married Couples Because of Supreme Court's DOMA Ruling

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Supreme Court's decision to strike down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act means same-sex married couples in states where gay marriage is legal are now eligible for more than 1,000 federal benefits previously available only to husbands and wives.  

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WNYC News

Bronx Residents React to Supreme Court Voting Rights Decision

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Supreme Court's decision striking down Section 4 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act has an impact on parts of New York City. Under the law, Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx required Federal clearance in advance, known as "preclearance," before they could make changes to voting procedures. But the Court said that the jurisdictions that had been covered under the law were chosen using old 1960s data and that they might not be discriminating any more.

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WNYC News

SCOTUS Ruling Highlights NYC Area Schools' Affirmative Action Policies

Monday, June 24, 2013

Monday’s Supreme Court decision on affirmative action programs keeps them alive, including at schools in New York and New Jersey. But even if they don't use race as a factor in admissions, many local schools are supporting the ruling.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Supreme Court Rules on Fisher vs. U-Texas: Back to Lower Court

Monday, June 24, 2013

This morning, the Supreme Court announced opinions on a few key cases, including:

  • In the affirmative action case Fisher vs. University of Texas, the court will send the case back to a lower court. SCOTUSBlog reports that this indicates "the majority seems to reaffirm that diversity is a compelling interest if only because that rule was not challenged by the plaintiffs in the case."
  • The court announced that it will hear a case this Fall about the constitutionality of President Obama's recess appointments.
  • Several pro-business rulings on the scope of the Civil Rights Act when it comes to workplace harassment.

We discuss the rulings and the impact with University of Chicago's Geoffrey Stone.

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The Washington Report

washreport062413pod

Monday, June 24, 2013

In this week's edition of The Washington Report, Kerry Nolan speaks with David Sanger about the ongoing saga of Edward Snowden, the man who has admitted leaking secrets about the NSA's electronic surveillance program. He also looks at the final day of the current Supreme Court term and the cases the judges are set to rule on.

WNYC News

Timeline | A Brief History of Same-sex Marriage in the Courts

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

WNYC

Same-sex marriage in U.S. courts didn't start with the case currently pending in the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1967, the Supreme court ruled on a case involving miscegenation and established marriage as a protected constitutional right. Dozens of other court battles have been fought in the decades since to determine how and whether the right to marry - and related benefits - should be extended to same-sex couples.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Syria Intervention; John Liu; Sheila Oliver; Vietnam Veteran Stories

Monday, June 17, 2013

New York Times chief Washington correspondent David Sanger analyzes the next steps in the Syrian war, the Iranian elections and the ongoing strife in Turkey. Plus: City Comptroller John Liu; New Jersey State Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver states her case to be the next New Jersey senator; author and history professor Philip Napoli discusses his new book, Bringing It All Back Home: An Oral History of New York City’s Vietnam Veterans; and Bloomberg View columnist Noah Feldman weighs in on Supreme Court rulings. 

The Takeaway

Patents On Genes Ruled Unconstitutional

Friday, June 14, 2013

Yesterday, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that human genes cannot be patented, but synthetic DNA is still patentable. The case was brought against Myriad Genetics, which owned patents on two naturally occurring genes associated with breast and ovarian cancer. Those patents allowed the company to exclusively administer breast cancer tests and set the price. According to the plaintiffs, they set that price too high.

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Slate Political Gabfest

Slate: The Let Me Just Swab Your Cheek Gabfest

Friday, June 07, 2013

Slate's Political Gabfest, featuring David Plotz, John Dickerson and Emily Bazelon. This week: The government tracks millions of Verizon phone calls, Chris Christie sets a date for the New Jersey senate election, and the Supreme Court rules on routine DNA

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The Takeaway

Supreme Court Allows Police to Collect DNA Samples After Arrests

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Yesterday, the Supreme Court upheld the practice of taking DNA samples from people arrested in felony cases, even if they are not charged. The ruling Maryland v. King was made in a 5-4 decision. On shows like Law and Order and CSI, DNA evidence is depicted as the kind of conclusive evidence that can swiftly make or break cases. In real life, however, it's a little more messy. Gregory Laskowski, a criminologist and consultant to the CBS series CSI, explains.

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WNYC News

SCOTUS Audio Lets Citizens Argue Along

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

WNYC

The Supreme Court went viral this week. On Twitter, Facebook and all over the Internet, Americans debated the Supreme Court's hearings on same-sex marriage. This was aided in part by the court's decision to quickly release audio recordings of the justices bantering with lawyers and each other over the issue.

+ Listen and Read: Supreme Court DOMA Arguments

+ Listen and Read: Supreme Court Prop. 8 Arguments

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WNYC News

Listen and Read: Supreme Court DOMA Arguments

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Listen to the full audio of oral arguments made before the Supreme Court about the Defense of Marriage Act and read an entire transcript of the remarks. 

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WNYC News

David Boies on Gay Marriage Hearings: Premature to Predict Prop 8's Future

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

David Boies is the lead counsel on the constitutional challenge to California's Proposition 8, the state's same-sex marriage ban that went before the Supreme Court on Tuesday. 

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WNYC News

What the SCOTUS Rulings on Gay Marriage Could Mean for NY

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Supreme Court's ruling on DOMA and California's Prop 8 could have implications for thousands of already-married same-sex couples in New York.

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