Bench Memos

Today’s End-of-Term Rulings

Beginning around 10 a.m., and again relying on SCOTUSblog’s live blogging, I will pass along in this continually updated post the quick bottom line on today’s three Supreme Court rulings, along with links to the opinions.  I hope to provide a fuller summary of Ricci v. DeStefano, as well as possibly some commentary, very soon in a separate post.

Again, the cases are announced in reverse order of seniority of the author of the majority (or lead) opinion.  (My guess from last week is that (1) Justice Kennedy will announce Cuomo v. Clearing House Ass’n (banking-law question) and that the Chief will announce Citizens United v. FEC (First Amendment/campaign finance) and Ricci v. DeStefano, or (2) Justice Alito will announce Citizens United, Kennedy will announce Cuomo, and the Chief will announce Ricci.)

1. Ricci v. DeStefano, the New Haven firefighters case:  Kennedy majority.  5-4.  Reversal (without remand).  Violation of Title VII.  Sounds like big win for firefighters. 

Ginsburg dissent, joined by Stevens, Souter, and Breyer.

2.  Cuomo v. Clearing House Ass’n(obscure banking-law question): 5-4, odd alignment.  Scalia majority, joined by Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer.

3.  Citizens United v. FEC (First Amendment challenge to the application of campaign-finance laws to a film critical of Hillary Clinton):  No opinion:  To be re-argued next term.

[My predictions were sure off.] 

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