There are too few judges, and backlogs of civil suits involving such issues as civil rights, personal injury and Social Security benefits are piling up in some federal courts, the Wall Street Journal says. Gavel Grab has more.
Federal News and Releases
The U.S. Supreme Court declined to review decisions that struck down bans on marriage for same-sex couples in five states. Read Gavel Grab for more.
President Obama has made his mark reshaping the federal circuit courts of appeals, where judges appointed by Democratic presidents now outnumber those appointed by Republicans by 95 to 77. For more, visit Gavel Grab.
The Senate voted to confirm former Missouri Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronnie White to a federal judgeship, 17 years after he first was nominated for the post. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
The Supreme Court's justices agreed on a bottom line in an exceptional number of cases, but the numbers concealed deep division on some issues, expert court-watchers said. Find out more from Gavel Grab.
Justice at Stake has submitted a friend-of-the-court brief contending that a federal trial court order striking down campaign contribution limits threatens fair and impartial courts in Montana. Gavel Grab has details.
The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that despite a federal Affordable Care Act mandate, family-owned corporations may withhold insurance coverage of certain contraception methods under a law that protects religious freedom. Find out more from Gavel Grab.
For the first time since 1940, the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed unanimously in more than 66 percent of its cases through the term, and that’s a positive development for the nation, Neal Katyal writes. Gavel Grab has more.
Noting the U.S. Senate’s historic confirmation this week of three judges of diverse backgrounds, JAS said a diverse bench serves all and strengthens public confidence in the judiciary. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
“[T]he process of staffing the federal courts is getting better, but given the process’s long-degraded state, that’s not saying much,” courts expert Russell Wheeler of the Brookings Institution blogs. See Gavel Grab for more.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has successfully stepped up the pace for Senate confirmation of judicial nominees, and the number of judicial vacancies has declined. Read Gavel Grab for more.
The issue of the legality of marriage for same-sex couples has gained momentum from a wave of lower-court rulings by a diverse set of judges who ruled against state bans. Gavel Grab has more.
The Brown v. Board of Education decision sixty years ago is historic not only for its impact on civil rights and education but also for illustrating the importance of independent courts, JAS said. See Gavel Grab for more.
The Senate confirmed Diane Humetewa to the federal district court in Arizona, where she will become the first female Native American federal judge in history, a milestone applauded by JAS. Gavel Grab has more.
A 2014 budget bill passed by Congress at least temporarily halted the bleeding for federal courts from funding cuts, but the harm remains, Praveen Fernandes of JAS told Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. See Gavel Grab for more.
It is over the top for the federal court system to regularly have two dozen cases where judges have violated conflict of interest rules and acknowledged it after the fact, JAS Executive Director Bert Brandenburg said. Gavel Grab has more.
Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic justice, wrote in a dissent this week her first high court opinion addressing race in America. See Gavel Grab for more.
A voter-approved Michigan ban on the use of racial preferences in admitting students to public universities was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in a 6-2 ruling. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
Ohio state legislator John Becker is renewing demands that federal judge Timothy Black be impeached. The judge is poised to strike down Ohio's ban on recognizing same-sex marriages from out of state. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission marked "another big win for special interests and big spenders," Justice at Stake Executive Director Bert Brandenburg said. Gavel Grab has more.
In two separate courtrooms in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, federal appellate judges heard challenges to different parts of the federal Affordable Care Act. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
The Senate’s blocking the nomination of Debo Adegbile, a respected civil rights lawyer, to a top Justice Department post has big implications for defenders of fair impartial courts, JAS said. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
A proposed U.S. Treasury Department rule to curb 501(c)(4) “social welfare” non-profit groups could have unique and unintended consequences for the courts, Justice at Stake said in submitting comments on it. Learn more from Gavel Grab.
Vacant federal district court judgeships have increased from 75 to 80 since Senate Democrats forced a rules change in November to eliminate filibusters of most judicial nominations, the Brennan Center for Justice says. Find out more from Gavel Grab.
President Obama’s nomination of Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Michael Boggs for the federal district court has encountered resistance from 27 liberal groups. Gavel Grab has details.