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  • May 19, 2021

    Court Watch: High-Profile U.S. Supreme Court Decisions Expected in June

    From religious freedom and freedom of speech to the Fourth Amendment and eminent domain, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to release all decisions by next month.

    Joe Forward

    US Supreme Court building

    May 19, 2021 – The U.S. Supreme Court appears poised to release more than 70 merits opinions by the end of June, up from 53 last term, the fewest number of decisions in more than 100 years.

    The court generally releases decisions in some of its most high-profile cases in June each year. So far this term, the nation’s high court has issued 32 signed merits decisions, with 39 cases still pending after oral arguments.

    Still pending are cases challenging the Affordable Care Act and cases challenging the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) rules on player compensation, cases involving the Big Ten Conference. InsideTrack previously detailed those issues.

    Cases yet to be decided include issues on religious freedom, immigration, free speech, takings/eminent domain, computer fraud, and the Alien Tort Statute. Others involve criminal issues, including the Fourth Amendment.

    Fourth Amendment Cases

    The Wisconsin Supreme Court has noted that Wisconsin courts are “bound to follow” the U.S. Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Fourth Amendment that “sets the minimum protections afforded by the federal constitution.”1

    Thus, any Fourth Amendment search and seizure cases decided by the U.S. Supreme Court have a direct and immediate impact in Wisconsin. Criminal lawyers in Wisconsin were likely watching cases involving the “community caretaker” and “exigent circumstances” exception to the Fourth Amendment’s warrant requirement.

    Lange v. California examines whether “hot pursuit” categorically qualifies as an exigent circumstance sufficient to enter a home without a warrant if a police officer has probable cause to believe the person in hot pursuit has committed a misdemeanor.

    Honking his horn and playing loud music, Arthur Lange drew an officer’s attention in Sonoma, California. The officer followed Lange into his neighborhood and attempted a traffic stop near Lange’s home.

    Lange said he did not notice the officer and kept driving. He parked his vehicle in his driveway, walked into his garage, and tried to close the garage door.

    The officer put his foot under the door to stop it from closing, and entered the garage without a warrant. Ultimately, Lange was arrested and convicted for drunk driving. The question is whether the officer violated Lange’s Fourth Amendment rights.

    The case is similar to State v. Dumstrey, 2016 WI 3, in which the Wisconsin Supreme Court (4-2) upheld a warrantless police stop in a private parking garage.

    However, Demstrey focused on whether the private parking garage was a constitutionally protected area, not whether the officer had exigent circumstances based on the pursuit of the defendant, whom the officer suspected of driving drunk.

    On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Caniglia v. Strom, unanimously ruling that police officers could not rely on the “community caretaker” exception to the warrant requirement to conduct a “wellness check” on the petitioner.

    Joe ForwardJoe Forward, Saint Louis Univ. School of Law 2010, is a legal writer for the State Bar of Wisconsin, Madison. He can be reached by email or by phone at (608) 250-6161.

    Edward Caniglia’s wife called police in Rhode Island, reporting that her husband was suicidal. When police questioned Caniglia, he said he was not suicidal.

    The court addressed other facts and circumstances and ultimately held that “a recognition of the existence of ‘community caretaking’ tasks, like rendering aid to motorists in disabled vehicles, is not an open-ended license to perform them anywhere.”

    Police entered the home without a warrant based on the community caretaker exception, and seized Caniglia’s firearms. In the eyes of police, the entry and seizure was justified because Caniglia presented a danger to himself and others.

    Although no criminal charges were filed, Caniglia sued, alleging the seizure of his guns violated his Fourth Amendment rights. The community caretaker function is typically addressed in criminal cases, and first applicable in the context of vehicle searches.

    But Wisconsin is among several federal circuits and state courts to expand the community caretaker exception to warrantless home searches.

    The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear Wisconsin-based community-caretaker exception cases in recent years, including State v. Pinkard, 327 Wis. 2d 346 (Wis. 2010), and State v. Matalonis, 366 Wis. 2d 443 (Wis. 2016).

    In both cases, a 4-3 majority upheld warrantless home searches based on the community caretaker exception. The Caniglia decision may test those holdings.

    Fourth Amendment on Tribal Land

    Wisconsin is home to 11 federally recognized Indian tribes with Native American lands statewide. Thus, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in U.S. v. Cooley, which involves Fourth Amendment rights on tribal lands, will have an impact here.

    The issue is whether tribal police officers can detain and search non-Tribal members on public roads that cross reservation land. The state charged the defendant, who was parked on the shoulder of a baron stretch of road in southern Montana, based on drugs and firearms uncovered by the tribal officer who stopped to check on him.

    “Tribal police officers’ authority flows from tribal governments, and so this case is also about the scope of tribal governments’ sovereign powers over non-Indians,” wrote Elizabeth Reese at SCOTUSblog, noting the U.S. Supreme Court has previously ruled that tribal courts do not have criminal jurisdiction over non-Tribal members.

    “Cooley addresses very real-world questions about tribal policing. But it also is controlled by a complex and convoluted series of federal common-law cases that have attempted to define the scope of tribal sovereignty for decades,” Reese wrote.

    Takings / Eminent Domain

    Everyone enjoys a good eminent domain case, and this term the court will decide Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid and PennEast Pipeline Co. v. New Jersey.

    In Cedar Point, the court will decide whether it violates the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment for California to maintain a regulation that allows union organizers to occupy farms for up to three hours per day to discuss unions with farm workers.

    The regulation, in California’s labor law, is intended “to ensure peace in the agricultural fields by guaranteeing justice for all agricultural workers and stability in labor relations.”

    But the California businesses challenging the law argue that the regulation “takes” their property without just compensation, which the government cannot do.

    In PennEast Pipeline, the court is considering whether the state of New Jersey is immune from condemnation proceedings brought by a pipeline company.

    The company obtained eminent domain powers under a certificate of necessity issued by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. New Jersey holds interests in properties designated for the pipeline, which the state opposes. Wisconsin native Paul Clement is arguing the case on behalf of PennEast Pipeline.

    Immigration Law

    The court will decide five cases with immigration law components. In Johnson v. Guzman Chavez, the court will consider a person’s eligibility to be released on bond while the claims for “withholding” of their deportation are resolved.

    In Sanchez v. Mayorkas, the court will decide whether those who hold a “temporary protected status” in the U.S. are eligible to become lawful permanent residents through a procedure known as “adjustment of status,” allowing them to remain in the U.S.

    More than 400,000 people have “temporary protected status,” including two petitioners from El Salvador displaced by earthquakes there two decades ago. If the court rules that temporary protected status does not mean they were “admitted,” they would need to return to their home countries and seek lawful permanent resident status from there.

    “As a practical matter, most of those who leave the United States will be barred from reentering for 10 years, even though they have already been approved for permanent residence by U.S. immigration authorities,” wrote Maryellen Fullerton at SCOTUSblog.

    Freedom of Speech and Religion

    Four cases deal with freedom of speech, freedom of religion, or freedom of association. In Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L., the court will decide if a school district could discipline students for social media speech posted outside of school.

    Brandi Levy was a sophomore at a public school in Pennsylvania when she posted a “snap” on Snapchat that said “Fuck school fuck softball fuck cheer fuck everything.” Levy was voicing frustration after she did not make the varsity cheerleading team.

    She was suspended from cheerleading for a year. The court will decide whether the school could regulate Levi’s speech even though she posted the snap while off campus.

    In Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, the court will determine whether a Catholic-based foster care organization can bar certification for unmarried or same-sex couples to become foster parents based on the organization’s religious beliefs.

    When the city of Pennsylvania learned about the organization’s stance, it ordered its foster care agency to stop referring potential candidates to the organization, which prompted the organization’s lawsuit on the grounds of religious freedom.

    In Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta, the court will decide whether a California law that requires charities and nonprofits to disclose the names of their biggest donors violates the First Amendment’s freedom of speech protections.

    Computer Fraud and Alien Tort Statute

    In Van Buren v. U.S., the court will decide whether a police officer violated the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act when he searched a license plate database to find information for an FBI informant who offered to pay him money as part of the sting.

    The officer had “authorization” to search the database for law enforcement purposes, but he was convicted under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act under the government’s argument that he exceeded his authorization in violation of the federal law.

    In Nestle USA Inc. v. Doe, the court will determine whether foreigners can maintain a lawsuit against large American corporations under the Alien Tort Statute.

    That statute allows foreigners to bring lawsuits against American corporations, in U.S. courts, claiming violations of international law. Former child slaves, citizens of Mali, claim Nestle and Cargill Inc. violated human rights laws at cocoa plantations overseas.

    The petitioners claim the companies aided and abetted human rights violations against forced child labor by continuing its business and financial relationship with the plantations despite knowing about the abuses. The companies argue that the Alien Tort Statute does not apply if the alleged conduct or injuries occur outside the U.S.

    2020-21 Term: U.S. Supreme Court Holdings and Issues*

    CIC Services, LLC v. Internal Revenue Service

    Decided 5.17.2021

    Issue(s): Whether the Anti-Injunction Act’s bar on lawsuits for the purpose of restraining the assessment or collection of taxes also bars challenges to unlawful regulatory mandates issued by administrative agencies that are not taxes.

    Edwards v. Vannoy

    Decided 5.17.2021

    Issue(s): Whether the Supreme Court’s decision in Ramos v. Louisiana applies retroactively to cases on federal collateral review.

    BP P.L.C. v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore

    Decided 5.17.2021

    Issue(s): Whether 28 U.S.C. 1447(d) permits a court of appeals to review any issue encompassed in a district court’s order remanding a removed case to state court when the removing defendant premised removal in part on the federal-officer removal statute, 28 U.S.C. 1442, or the civil-rights removal statute, 28 U.S.C. 1443

    Caniglia v. Strom

    Decided 5.17.2021

    Issue(s): Whether the “community caretaking” exception to the Fourth Amendment’s warrant requirement extends to the home.

    Mckesson v. Doe

    Decided Without Oral Argument

    Holding: Under the unusual circumstances of this case, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit should not have ventured into such an uncertain area of state tort law without first using state certification procedures to seek guidance from the Louisiana Supreme Court.

    Taylor v. Riojas

    Decided Without Oral Argument

    Holding: Because any reasonable correctional officer should have realized that Trent Taylor’s conditions of confinement offended the Eighth Amendment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit erred in granting the officers qualified immunity.

    Shinn v. Kayer

    Decided Without Oral Argument

    Holding: A decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit granting post-conviction relief to a man on Arizona's death row for his claim of ineffective assistance of counsel violated the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996.

    Mays v. Hines

    Decided Without Oral Argument

    Holding: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit erred in revisiting on federal habeas review the decision of a Tennessee court supported by ample evidence that did not exceed the possibility of fairminded disagreement supporting that court’s conclusion.

    Alaska v. Wright

    Decided Without Oral Argument

    Holding: The requirement under 28 U.S.C. § 2254(a) that a habeas petitioner be “in custody pursuant to the judgment of a State court” is not met if the state judgment is simply a necessary predicate to a federal conviction.

    City of Chicago, Illinois v. Fulton

    Decided 1.14.2021

    Holding: The mere retention of estate property after the filing of a bankruptcy petition does not violate 11 U.S.C. § 362(a)(3), which operates as a “stay” of “any act” to “exercise control” over the property of the estate.

    Carney v. Adams

    Decided 12.10.2020

    Holding: Because Adams has not shown that he was “able and ready” to apply for a judicial vacancy in the imminent future, he has failed to show a “personal,” “concrete” and “imminent” injury necessary for Article III standing.

    Tanzin v. Tanvir

    Decided 12.10.2020

    Holding: The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993’s express remedies provision, 42 U. S. C. §2000bb–1(c), permits litigants, when appropriate, to obtain money damages against federal officials in their individual capacities for violating litigants' right to free exercise of religion under the First Amendment.

    Rutledge v. Pharmaceutical Care Management Association

    Decided 12.10.2020

    Holding: Arkansas’ Act 900 is not preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974.

    U.S. v. Briggs

    Decided 12.10.2020

    Holding: The prosecutions of three military service members for rape were timely under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

    U.S. v. Collins

    Decided 12.10.2020

    Holding: The prosecutions of three military service members for rape were timely under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

    Texas v. New Mexico

    Decided 12.14.2020

    Holding: Texas’ motion to review the Pecos River Master’s determination – that New Mexico was entitled to a delivery credit for evaporated water stored at Texas’ request under the Pecos River Compact – is denied.

    Trump v. New York

    Decided 12.18.2020

    Holding: Because the challengers have not shown standing and because the claims presented are not ripe for adjudication, the district court’s judgment is vacated, and the case is remanded with instructions to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction.

    Brownback v. King

    Decided 2.25.2021

    Holding: The district court's dismissal of King's claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act triggered the "judgment bar" in 28 U.S.C. § 2676 that precludes him from raising separate claims under Bivens v. Six Unknown Federal Narcotics Agents on appeal.

    Salinas v. U.S. Railroad Retirement Board

    Decided 2.3.2021

    Holding: The U.S. Railroad Retirement Board’s refusal to reopen a former railroad worker's prior benefits determination is subject to judicial review.

    Republic of Hungary v. Simon

    Decided 2.3.2021

    Holding: Judgment vacated and case remanded to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit for further proceedings consistent with Federal Republic of Germany v. Philipp

    Federal Republic of Germany v. Philipp

    Decided 2.3.2021

    Holding: The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act’s expropriation exception, 28 U.S.C. § 1605(a)(3), incorporates the domestic takings rule, which recognizes that a foreign sovereign’s taking of its own nationals’ property is not a violation of international law.

    Ford Motor Company v. Bandemer

    Decided 3.25.2021

    Holding: The connection between plaintiffs’ product-liability claims arising from car accidents occurring in each plaintiff’s state of residence and Ford’s activities in those states is sufficient to support specific jurisdiction in the respective state courts, even though the automobiles involved in the accidents were manufactured and sold elsewhere.

    Ford Motor Company v. Montana Eighth Judicial District Court,

    Decided 3.25.2021

    Holding: The connection between plaintiffs’ product-liability claims arising from car accidents occurring in each plaintiff’s state of residence and Ford’s activities in those states is sufficient to support specific jurisdiction in the respective state courts, even though the automobiles involved in the accidents were manufactured and sold elsewhere.

    Torres v. Madrid

    Decided 3.25.2021

    Holding: The application of physical force to the body of a person with intent to restrain is a seizure even if the person does not submit and is not subdued.

    Pereida v. Wilkinson

    Decided 3.4.2021

    Holding: A nonpermanent resident seeking to cancel a lawful removal order fails to carry his burden of showing that he has not been convicted of a disqualifying offense when the statutory conviction on his record is ambiguous regarding whether a disqualifying offense formed the basis of his conviction.

    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service v. Sierra Club

    Decided 3.4.2021

    Holding: The deliberative process privilege gives protection from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act to in-house draft biological opinions that are both predecisional and deliberative, even if the drafts reflect the agencies’ last views about a proposal.

    Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski

    Decided 3.8.2021

    Holding: A request for nominal damages satisfies the redressability element necessary for Article III standing where a plaintiff’s claim is based on a completed violation of a legal right.

    Facebook Inc. v. Duguid

    Decided 4.1.2021

    Holding: To qualify as an “automatic telephone dialing system” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, a device must have the capacity either to store, or to produce, a telephone number using a random or sequential number generator.

    National Association of Broadcasters v. Prometheus Radio Project

    Decided 4.1.2021

    Holding: The Federal Communications Commission’s 2017 decision to repeal or modify three of its media ownership rules was not arbitrary or capricious for purposes of the Administrative Procedure Act.

    Federal Communications Commission v. Prometheus Radio Project

    Decided 4.1.2021

    Holding: The Federal Communications Commission’s 2017 decision to repeal or modify three of its media ownership rules was not arbitrary or capricious for purposes of the Administrative Procedure Act.

    Florida v. Georgia

    Decided 4.1.2021

    Holding: Florida failed to establish that Georgia’s overconsumption of interstate waters was either a substantial factor contributing to, or the sole cause of, Florida’s injuries.

    Jones v. Mississippi

    Decided 4.22.2021

    Holding: The Eighth Amendment does not require a finding that a juvenile is permanently incorrigible before imposing a sentence of life without parole.

    AMG Capital Management, LLC v. Federal Trade Commission

    Decided 4.22.2021

    Holding: Section 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act does not authorize the commission to seek, or a court to award, equitable monetary relief such as restitution or disgorgement.

    Davis v. Saul

    Decided 4.22.2021

    Holding: Principles of issue exhaustion do not require Social Security disability claimants to argue at the agency level that the administrative law judges hearing their disability claims were unconstitutionally appointed.

    Carr v. Saul

    Decided 4.22.2021

    Holding: Principles of issue exhaustion do not require Social Security disability claimants to argue at the agency level that the administrative law judges hearing their disability claims were unconstitutionally appointed.

    Niz-Chavez v. Garland

    Decided 4.29.2021

    Holding: A notice to appear sufficient to trigger the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996’s stop-time rule is a single document containing all the information about an individual’s removal hearing specified in 8 U.S.C. § 1229(a)(1)

    Google LLC v. Oracle America Inc.

    Decided 4.5.2021

    Holding: Google’s limited copying of the Java SE Application Programming Interface allowed programmers to put their accrued talents to work in a transformative program and constituted a fair use of that material under copyright law.

    Borden v. U.S.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the “use of force” clause in the Armed Career Criminal Act encompasses crimes with a mens rea of mere recklessness

    Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether free exercise plaintiffs can only succeed by proving a particular type of discrimination claim — namely that the government would allow the same conduct by someone who held different religious views — as two circuits have held, or whether courts must consider other evidence that a law is not neutral and generally applicable, as six circuits have held; (2) whether Employment Division v. Smith should be revisited; and (3) whether the government violates the First Amendment by conditioning a religious agency’s ability to participate in the foster care system on taking actions and making statements that directly contradict the agency’s religious beliefs.

    Texas v. California

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether the unconstitutional individual mandate to purchase minimum essential coverage is severable from the remainder of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; and (2) whether the district court properly declared the ACA invalid in its entirety and unenforceable anywhere.

    California v. Texas

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether the individual and state plaintiffs in this case have established Article III standing to challenge the minimum-coverage provision in Section 5000A(a) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA); (2) whether reducing the amount specified in Section 5000A(c) to zero rendered the minimum-coverage provision unconstitutional; and (3) if so, whether the minimum-coverage provision is severable from the rest of the ACA.

    Van Buren v. U.S.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether a person who is authorized to access information on a computer for certain purposes violates Section 1030(a)(2) of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act if he accesses the same information for an improper purpose.

    Nestlé USA v. Doe I

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether an aiding and abetting claim against a domestic corporation brought under the Alien Tort Statute may overcome the extraterritoriality bar where the claim is based on allegations of general corporate activity in the United States and where the plaintiffs cannot trace the alleged harms, which occurred abroad at the hands of unidentified foreign actors, to that activity; and (2) whether the judiciary has the authority under the Alien Tort Statute to impose liability on domestic corporations.

    Cargill v. Doe I

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether the presumption against extraterritorial application of the Alien Tort Statute is displaced by allegations that a U.S. company generally conducted oversight of its foreign operations at its headquarters and made operational and financial decisions there, even though the conduct alleged to violate international law occurred in – and the plaintiffs suffered their injuries in – a foreign country; and (2) whether a domestic corporation is subject to liability in a private action under the Alien Tort Statute.

    Yellen v. Collins

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether the statute’s anti-injunction clause, which precludes courts from taking any action that would “restrain or affect the exercise of powers or functions of the Agency as a conservator,” 12 U.S.C. 4617(f), precludes a federal court from setting aside the Third Amendment. (2). Whether the statute’s succession clause – under which FHFA, as conservator, inherits the shareholders’ rights to bring derivative actions on behalf of the enterprises – precludes the shareholders from challenging the Third Amendment.

    Collins v. Yellen

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s structure violates the separation of powers; and (2) whether the courts must set aside a final agency action that FHFA took when it was unconstitutionally structured and strike down the statutory provisions that make FHFA independent.

    Johnson v. Guzman Chavez

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the detention of an alien who is subject to a reinstated removal order and who is pursuing withholding or deferral of removal is governed by 8 U.S.C. § 1231, or instead by 8 U.S.C. § 1226.

    Garland v. Dai

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether a court of appeals may conclusively presume that an asylum applicant’s testimony is credible and true whenever an immigration judge or the Board of Immigration Appeals adjudicates an application without making an explicit adverse credibility determination; and (2) whether the court of appeals violated the remand rule as set forth in INS v. Ventura when it determined in the first instance that the respondent, Ming Dai, was eligible for asylum and entitled to withholding of removal.

    Garland v. Alcaraz-Enriquez

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether a court of appeals may conclusively presume an applicant’s testimony is credible and true whenever an immigration judge or the Board of Immigration Appeals adjudicates a withholding-of-removal application without making an explicit adverse credibility determination.

    Lange v. California

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the pursuit of a person whom a police officer has probable cause to believe has committed a misdemeanor categorically qualifies as an exigent circumstance sufficient to allow the officer to enter a home without a warrant.

    Arthrex Inc. v. Smith & Nephew Inc.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether, for purposes of the Constitution’s appointments clause, administrative patent judges of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office are principal officers who must be appointed by the president with the Senate’s advice and consent, or “inferior Officers” whose appointment Congress has permissibly vested in a department head; and (2) whether, if administrative patent judges are principal officers, the court of appeals properly cured any appointments clause defect in the current statutory scheme prospectively by severing the application of 5 U.S.C. § 7513(a) to those judges.

    U.S. v. Arthrex Inc

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether, for purposes of the Constitution’s appointments clause, administrative patent judges of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office are principal officers who must be appointed by the president with the Senate’s advice and consent, or “inferior Officers” whose appointment Congress has permissibly vested in a department head; and (2) whether, if administrative patent judges are principal officers, the court of appeals properly cured any appointments clause defect in the current statutory scheme prospectively by severing the application of 5 U.S.C. § 7513(a) to those judges.

    Smith & Nephew Inc. v. Arthrex Inc.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether, for purposes of the Constitution’s appointments clause, administrative patent judges of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office are principal officers who must be appointed by the president with the Senate’s advice and consent, or “inferior Officers” whose appointment Congress has permissibly vested in a department head; and (2) whether, if administrative patent judges are principal officers, the court of appeals properly cured any appointments clause defect in the current statutory scheme prospectively by severing the application of 5 U.S.C. § 7513(a) to those judges.

    Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether Arizona’s out-of-precinct policy, which does not count provisional ballots cast in person on Election Day outside of the voter’s designated precinct, violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act; and (2) whether Arizona’s ballot-collection law, which permits only certain persons (i.e., family and household members, caregivers, mail carriers and elections officials) to handle another person’s completed early ballot, violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act or the 15th Amendment.

    Arizona Republican Party v. Democratic National Committee

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act compels states to authorize any voting practice that would be used disproportionately by racial minorities, even if existing voting procedures are race-neutral and offer all voters an equal opportunity to vote; and (2) whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit correctly held that Arizona’s ballot-harvesting prohibition was tainted by discriminatory intent even though the legislators were admittedly driven by partisan interests and by supposedly “unfounded” concerns about voter fraud.

    Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the uncompensated appropriation of an easement that is limited in time effects a per se physical taking under the Fifth Amendment.

    U.S. v. Cooley

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the lower courts erred in suppressing evidence on the theory that a police officer of an Indian tribe lacked authority to temporarily detain and search the respondent, Joshua James Cooley, a non-Indian, on a public right-of-way within a reservation based on a potential violation of state or federal law.

    Goldman Sachs Group Inc. v. Arkansas Teacher Retirement System

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether a defendant in a securities class action may rebut the presumption of classwide reliance recognized in Basic Inc. v. Levinson by pointing to the generic nature of the alleged misstatements in showing that the statements had no impact on the price of the security, even though that evidence is also relevant to the substantive element of materiality; and (2) whether a defendant seeking to rebut the Basic presumption has only a burden of production or also the ultimate burden of persuasion.

    TransUnion LLC v. Ramirez

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether either Article III or Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 permits a damages class action when the vast majority of the class suffered no actual injury, let alone an injury anything like what the class representative suffered.

    National Collegiate Athletic Association v. Alston

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit erroneously held, in conflict with decisions of other circuits and general antitrust principles, that the National Collegiate Athletic Association eligibility rules regarding compensation of student-athletes violate federal antitrust law.

    American Athletic Conference v. Alston

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the Sherman Act authorizes a court to subject the product-defining rules of a joint venture to full Rule of Reason review, and to hold those rules unlawful if, in the court’s view, they are not the least restrictive means that could have been used to accomplish their procompetitive goal.

    Alaska Native Village Corporation Association v. Confederated Tribes of the Chehalis Reservation

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether Alaska Native regional and village corporations are “Indian tribes” under the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act and therefore are eligible for emergency-relief funds under Title V of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act

    Yellen v. Confederated Tribes of the Chehalis Reservation

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether Alaska Native regional and village corporations established pursuant to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act are “Indian Tribe[s]” for purposes of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act

    Sanchez v. Mayorkas

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether, under 8 U.S.C. § 1254a(f)(4), a grant of temporary protected status authorizes eligible noncitizens to obtain lawful-permanent-resident status under 8 U.S.C. § 1255.

    U.S. v. Gary

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether a defendant who pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm as a felon, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(1) and 924(a), is automatically entitled to plain-error relief if the district court did not advise him that one element of that offense is knowledge of his status as a felon, regardless of whether he can show that the district court’s error affected the outcome of the proceedings.

    Greer v. U.S.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether, when applying plain-error review based on an intervening United States Supreme Court decision, Rehaif v. United States, a circuit court of appeals may review matters outside the trial record to determine whether the error affected a defendant’s substantial rights or impacted the fairness, integrity or public reputation of the trial.

    Minerva Surgical Inc. v. Hologic Inc.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether a defendant in a patent infringement action who assigned the patent, or is in privity with an assignor of the patent, may have a defense of invalidity heard on the merits.

    City of San Antonio, Texas v. Hotels.com, L.P.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit alone has held, district courts “lack[] discretion to deny or reduce” appellate costs deemed “taxable” in district court under Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 39(e).

    Thomas More Law Center v. Bonta

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether exacting scrutiny or strict scrutiny applies to disclosure requirements that burden nonelectoral, expressive association rights; and (2) whether California’s disclosure requirement violates charities’ and their donors’ freedom of association and speech facially or as applied to the Thomas More Law Center.

    Guam v. U.S

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether a settlement that is not under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act can trigger a contribution claim under CERCLA Section 113(f)(3)(B); and (2) whether a settlement that expressly disclaims any liability determination and leaves the settling party exposed to future liability can trigger a contribution claim under CERCLA Section 113(f)(3)(B).

    Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether the exacting scrutiny the Supreme Court has long required of laws that abridge the freedoms of speech and association outside the election context – as called for by NAACP v. Alabama ex rel. Patterson and its progeny – can be satisfied absent any showing that a blanket governmental demand for the individual identities and addresses of major donors to private nonprofit organizations is narrowly tailored to an asserted law-enforcement interest.

    U.S. v. Palomar-Santiago

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether a defendant, charged with unlawful reentry into the United States following removal, automatically satisfies the prerequisites to asserting the invalidity of the original removal order as an affirmative defense solely by showing that he was removed for a crime that would not be considered a removable offense under current circuit law, even if he cannot independently demonstrate administrative exhaustion or deprivation of the opportunity for judicial review.

    HollyFrontier Cheyenne Refining, LLC v. Renewable Fuels Association

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether, in order to qualify for a hardship exemption under Section 7545(o)(9)(B)(i) of the Renewable Fuel Standards, a small refinery needs to receive uninterrupted, continuous hardship exemptions for every year since 2011.

    PennEast Pipeline Co. v. New Jersey

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): (1) Whether the Natural Gas Act delegates to Federal Energy Regulatory Commission certificate-holders the authority to exercise the federal government’s eminent-domain power to condemn land in which a state claims an interest; and (2) whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit properly exercised jurisdiction over this case.

    Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District, which holds that public school officials may regulate speech that would materially and substantially disrupt the work and discipline of the school, applies to student speech that occurs off campus.

    Terry v. U.S.

    Not Decided Yet

    Issue(s): Whether pre-August 3, 2010, crack offenders sentenced under 21 U.S.C. § 841(b)(1)(C) have a “covered offense” under Section 404 of the First Step Act.

    *Derived from SCOTUSblog

    Endnotes

    1 State v. Felix, 2012 WI 36, ¶ 36, 339 Wis. 2d 670, 693, 811 N.W.2d 775, 787




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