How Appealing

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

“Ruling to Shift Abortion Fight; Focus Moves to States As Supreme Court Backs A ‘Partial Birth’ Ban”: Jess Bravin will have this article (pass-through link) Thursday in The Wall Street Journal.

Posted at 11:58 PM by Howard Bashman

“I expect that the Supreme Court will uphold the constitutionality of this federal law by a vote of 5–4, and in the aftermath of such a ruling states too will be free to ban the procedure by enacting similarly worded statutes.” That was the final sentence of my “On Appeal” column headlined “Congress Puts ‘Partial-Birth’ Abortion Back on the Supreme Court’s Agenda,” which posted online on February 27, 2006. I guess this proves that I don’t shy away from predicting the outcomes of cases whose outcomes are easy to predict.

Posted at 8:30 PM by Howard Bashman

“Court Upholds Nationwide Ban of Partial-Birth Abortions; Abortion-Rights Advocates Worry Decision Could Signal Shift in Court’s Support of Roe”: Jan Crawford Greenburg and Ariane deVogue have this written report online at

Posted at 8:10 PM by Howard Bashman

“Microsoft Settles Iowa Lawsuit”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “Microsoft Corp. agreed Wednesday to pay Iowans up to $180 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that claimed the company had a monopoly that cost the state’s citizens millions of dollars extra for software products.”

Posted at 3:42 PM by Howard Bashman

Today’s rulings of note from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit: Are you curious about how the brakes work on amusement park rides such as rollercoasters or drop towers? If so, read this opinion, and you may learn a thing or two.

In a second ruling issued today, a three-judge panel divides over a vexing question that recurs far too frequently: How to distinguish between a litigant who is just crazy enough to proceed without an attorney and a litigant who is too crazy to be allowed to proceed without an attorney.

Posted at 3:04 PM by Howard Bashman

Proving, once again, that the devil is in the details: If the case settled in the trial court, what is it doing on appeal? As this decision that a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued today demonstrates, sometimes opposing parties agree to settle a litigated matter but then fail to agree over what the written settlement agreement should or should not say. In that event, the litigation over whether a settlement was in fact reached and, if so, what its material terms are can give rise to a dispute as contentious as the original dispute that the settlement was intended to resolve.

Posted at 2:52 PM by Howard Bashman

“US Supreme Court allows late-term abortion ban; The 5-to-4 ruling reverses a 2000 decision that struck down a ban on so-called ‘partial-birth’ abortion”: Warren Richey will have this article Thursday in The Christian Science Monitor.

And Joan Biskupic of USA Today provides a news update headlined “Court backs abortion ban.”

Posted at 2:32 PM by Howard Bashman

“High Court Blocks State Power Over Some Lenders”: Jess Bravin has this article (pass-through link) today in The Wall Street Journal.

Posted at 2:25 PM by Howard Bashman

“Court OKs ‘Seven Aphorisms’ in park; Summum faith can erect monuments in Pleasant Grove and Duchesne”: The Salt Lake Tribune today contains an article that begins, “A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that followers of the Summum faith can display their Seven Aphorisms in Duchesne and Pleasant Grove city parks, which already hold monuments of the Ten Commandments. The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals noted that the parks are public forums, and restrictions on speech based solely on its content are forbidden except in narrow circumstances. The two decisions overturned rulings by U.S. District Judge Dee Benson that blocked Summum’s proposed monuments. In the Pleasant Grove case, the court said requiring the city to permit display of Summum’s tenets will further free speech.”

My earlier coverage of yesterday’s Tenth Circuit rulings, including links to both rulings, can be accessed here.

Posted at 12:20 PM by Howard Bashman

“Two women convicted of murdering husbands could be freed”: The St. Louis Post-Dispatch today contains an article that begins, “After 29 years behind bars for the murder of her husband, Shirley Lute will be a free woman soon. And Lynda Branch, an inmate for the murder of her husband in 1986, might follow her out the prison doors. That’s the effect of a decision Tuesday by the Missouri Supreme Court that seeks to resolve a conflict between the powers of the governor and the independent Missouri Board of Probation and Parole.”

And The Columbia Missourian reports today that “Court rules in favor of inmates; Women convicted of murdering their abusive husbands get parole hearings.”

You can access yesterday’s ruling of the Supreme Court of Missouri at this link.

Posted at 12:11 PM by Howard Bashman

“Harriet Miers to Return to Locke Liddell & Sapp”: Texas Lawyer today contains an article that begins, “Former White House Counsel Harriet Miers will return to Locke Liddell & Sapp, the firm she formerly co-managed, on May 1 as a partner.”

Posted at 10:54 AM by Howard Bashman

Access online today’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the partial-birth abortion ban cases: You can access the decision at this link. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy delivered the opinion of the Court, in which the Chief Justice and Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel A. Alito, Jr. joined. Justice Thomas also filed a concurring opinion in which Justice Scalia joined. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote a dissenting opinion, in which Justices John Paul Stevens, David H. Souter, and Stephen G. Breyer joined.

Although the cases were argued separately (access the oral argument transcripts here and here), the Court disposed of the cases by means of a single opinion.

In his concurrence, Justice Thomas states: “I write separately to reiterate my view that the Court’s abortion jurisprudence, including Casey and Roe v. Wade, 410 U. S. 113 (1973), has no basis in the Constitution.” It is worth noting that the Court’s two newest Justices — the Chief Justice and Justice Alito — did not join in Justice Thomas’s concurring opinion.

Posted at 10:32 AM by Howard Bashman

BREAKING NEWS — “Supreme Court OKs Abortion Procedure Ban”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “The Supreme Court upheld the nationwide ban on a disputed abortion procedure Wednesday, handing abortion opponents the long-awaited victory they expected from a more conservative bench.”

Posted at 10:08 AM by Howard Bashman

“Court upholds federal abortion ban”: At “SCOTUSblog,” Lyle Denniston has a post that begins, “Dividing 5-4, the Supreme Court on Wednesday gave a sweeping victory to the federal government and to other opponents of abortion, upholding the 1993 law that banned what are often called ‘partial-birth abortions.’ Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority in the first-ever decision by the Court to uphold a total ban on a specific abortion procedure.”

In addition, the Court also announced its ruling in James v. United States, No. 05-9264. You can access the oral argument transcript at this link.

Posted at 10:04 AM by Howard Bashman