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Current Court Transition 2012. Rehnquist to Roberts. ROBERTS COURT 2005-PRESENT A Balanced but Conservative Court?...5-4 Decisions in Many Major Cases. REHNQUIST COURT 1986-2005 Court Members stayed same from 1994 until 2005. Activist Liberal Loose Constructionist. Swing Voter Moderate

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current court transition 2012

Current Court Transition2012

Rehnquist to Roberts

slide2

ROBERTS COURT 2005-PRESENT

A Balanced but Conservative Court?...5-4 Decisions in Many Major Cases

REHNQUIST COURT 1986-2005

Court Members stayed same from 1994 until 2005

Activist

Liberal

Loose Constructionist

Swing Voter

Moderate

Centrist

Restraint

Conservative

Strict Constructionist

Stevens

Souter

Ginsburg

Breyer-’94

Stevens

Ginsburg

Breyer

Sotomayor-’09

Ginsburg

Breyer

Sotomayor-’09

Kagan-’10

Roberts-Chief

Scalia

Thomas

Rehnquist-Chief

Scalia

Thomas

Roberts-Chief

Scalia

Thomas

Alito… “Scalito”

O’Connor

Kennedy

Kennedy

Roberts

  • Transition to the Current Court:
  • 2005--O’Connor expresses her desire to Retire—husband has Alzheimers& needs constant care
  • John Roberts is nominated to replace her
  • Sept 2005—William Rehnquist dies over Labor Day Weekend—Bush announces Roberts to replace Rehnquist as Chief
    • --Continue Conservative Leadership (former Rehnquist clerk)
  • O’Connor agrees to stay on until Bush can find a suitable replacement
  • ---Bush nominates Samuel Alito…conservative…nickname “Scalito”
  • 2009—Souter announces his retirement (didn’t like the Washington life)—Obama gets first appointment within 6 months of becoming President—What type of Justice will he appoint?....
    • --Sonia Sotomayor: first Latino in history
    • Spring 2010—John Paul Stevens announces his retirement—Obama 2nd appointment in two years—Influence future of the Court?....
    • --Elena Kagan: single, white, female—puts 3 females on Court for first time in history
  • Current Court—Major decisions are left to single Swing Voter—ANTHONY KENNEDY—”Kennedy Court”….WHO IS NEXT TO GO????...IT MATTERS WHO YOU VOTE FOR!!!!!! (Why we Studied Court History for 3 weeks)
roberts court
ROBERTS COURT
  • Roberts has shown to be a more conservative Chief than Rehnquist
  • Equilibrium still exists on Roberts Court
    • Bush was able to even up blocs with replacing swing voter O’Connor with very conservative Alito
    • Obama 2 appointments for two liberals
    • Kennedy is the lone swing voter-”Kennedy Court”
  • Rehnquist Court (Judicial Supremacy) settled most high profile issues in their 11+ years together leaving few major challenges during these early Roberts’ years
roberts court major decisions so far
Roberts CourtMajor Decisions So Far
  • Gonzales v. Cahart (2006)
    • Upheld ban on partial-birth abortions
    • Privacy Rights
  • FEC v. Wisconsin Right to Life (2007)
    • Loosened restrictions on campaign advertising
    • 1st Amendment-speech
  • Graham v. Florida (2009)
    • Juveniles could not be sentenced to life without parole for any crime short of homicide
    • Criminal Defendant Rights
  • Salazar v. Buono (2010)
    • Cross built on federal land to honor war victims; cross could stay but sent back to lower court
    • Religious Rights
  • Citizens United v. FEC (2010)
    • Prevented restrictions of political donations by corporations and unions-Super PACs
    • 1st Amendment-speech
roberts court 2011 2012 term
Roberts Court2011-2012 term
  • This is predicted to be the most high profile term of the Roberts Court….some major cases upcoming:
    • Dept. of Health and Human Services v. Florida
      • Obamacare challenge
    • FCC v. Fox TV
      • “indecent” speech on radion/TV—unconstitutional?
    • US v. Jones
      • GPS Tracking devices on cars without warrant—public streets
      • Court ruled using 4th Amendment police can’t use GPS tracking w/o warrant
    • US v. Alvarez
      • Free speech case—can a person lie about receiving military awards
    • Florence v. Board of Chosen Freeholders..(NJ)
      • Prison strip searches for non-suspicious reasons
    • Maples v. Thomas
      • Death row mistake
    • Arizona v. US
      • AZ challenging appeals court saying their illegal immigration law is unconstitutional
    • Fisher v. Univ. of Texas Austin
      • Affirmative action case (Court will hear this in Oct/Nov.—next term—election season!)
    • Gay Marriage challenges (next term probably)