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Controversial Cases To Watch As Supreme Court Gears Up For New Term




United States Supreme Court (Front L-R) Associate Justice Stephen Breyer, Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John Roberts, Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice Samuel Alito, Jr., (Back L-R) Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice Elena Kagan and Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh pose for their official portrait at the Supreme Court building.
United States Supreme Court (Front L-R) Associate Justice Stephen Breyer, Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John Roberts, Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice Samuel Alito, Jr., (Back L-R) Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch, Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice Elena Kagan and Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh pose for their official portrait at the Supreme Court building.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

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The Supreme Court is back in session for a new term starting next Monday, October 7th. This will be the first full term the court serves together, after Justice Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed last year. 

Currently, the court has a five to four conservative majority. With a developing impeachment inquiry and several hot-button issues on the docket, the court’s upcoming term is expected to be high-profile. Some of the cases to be considered include LGBT workplace rights, the Second Amendment and DACA. On Monday the court will hear Kahler V. Kansas, to decide whether states can abolish the insanity defense.

Today on AirTalk we’ll discuss cases to watch. For more details on a specific case, you can find links and descriptions below.

Kahler v. Kansas (Oct. 7): Whether the Constitution allows a state to abolish the insanity defense

Ramos v. Louisiana (Oct. 7): Whether the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee of a unanimous jury applies to the states.

Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia and Altitude Express v. Zarda (consolidated for one hour of oral argument) (Oct. 8): Whether the federal ban on employment discrimination “because of sex” applies to discrimination based on sexual orientation.

R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC (Oct. 8): Whether federal employment discrimination laws prohibit discrimination against transgender people

Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of the University of California, Trump v. NAACP and McAleenan v. Vidal (Tuesday, Nov. 12): Whether courts can review the decision to end DACA; and, if so, whether the decision to end DACA was lawful.

Hernandez v. Mesa (Tuesday, Nov. 12): Whether, when the plaintiffs allege that a rogue law-enforcement officer violated clearly established Fourth and Fifth Amendment rights for which there is no other legal remedy, courts should recognize a claim for damages against him.

Comcast Corp. v. National Association of African American-Owned Media (Wednesday, Nov. 13): Whether a claim that a defendant violated the federal law barring racial discrimination in contracts requires the plaintiff to show that the defendant would not have turned the plaintiff down were it not for the plaintiff’s race.

New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York (Monday, Dec. 2): Whether the city’s ban on taking a handgun outside city limits violates the Second Amendment.

Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue (DATE TBD): Whether it violates the religion clauses or the equal protection clause of the United States Constitution to invalidate a generally available and religiously neutral student-aid program simply because the program affords students the choice of attending religious schools.

Kelly v. U.S. (DATE TBD): Whether a public official “defraud[s]” the government of its property by advancing a “public policy reason” for an official decision that is not her subjective “real reason” for making the decision.

 

Guests:

Amy Howe, co-founder of SCOTUSblog and and author of the blog, "Howe on the Court"; she tweets @AHoweBlogger

Adam Liptak, U.S. Supreme Court reporter for The New York Times; he tweets @adamliptak



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