Recap: Supreme Court


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The U.S. Supreme Court has adjourned for the summer. During its session, the court decided the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage and ruled tax subsidies for insurance coverage was lawful. 

Matthew Rezab

SAME-SEX MARRIAGE — Obergefell v. Hodges — 5-4

Majority — Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer and Kennedy

-The court ruled that same-sex marriage is guaranteed by the Constitution.

HEALTH CARE SUBSIDIES — King v. Burwell — 6-3

Majority— Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer, Kennedy and Roberts

-The court ruled that in the 36 states that are not running marketplaces for insurance coverage, tax subsidies are being provided lawfully. The decision was a win for the Affordable Care Act.

LETHAL INJECTION — Glossip v. Gross —5-4

Majority — Kennedy, Roberts Scalia, Alito and Thomas

-The court ruled that the drug linked to mishandled executions may still be used, and does not constitute cruel and unusual punishment.

REDISTRICTING AND PARTISANSHIP — Az. State Legislature v. Az. Ind. Redistricting Commission — 5-4

Majority— Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer and Kennedy

-The court decided that voters can decide if lawmakers have the authority to draw district lines.  

HOUSING DISCRIMINATION — Tx. Dept. of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project — 5-4         

 Majority — Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer and Kennedy

-The court ruled that under the Fair Housing Act of 1968, plaintiffs could prove discrimination using statistics to show a “disparate impact.” 

FREE SPEECH AND THE CONFEDERATE FLAG — Walker v. Sons of Confederate Veterans, Tx. Division — 5-4

Majority — Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer and Thomas

-The court ruled that states, Texas in this case, are free to reject license plates displaying the Confederate flag.

SEPARATION OF POWERS — Zivotofsky v. Kerry — 6-3                        

Majority — Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer, Thomas and Kennedy

-The court ruled that congress can not order the State Department to “record the place of birth as Israel” on the passports of American children born in Jerusalem at the parents request.

FREE SPEECH AND SOCIAL MEDIA — Elonis v. United States — 8-1

Majority — Thomas was the lone vote of dissent.

-The court ruled that Anthony Elonis’s intent when he published threatening lyrics directed at his wife on Facebook was not proven by prosecutors.

FREE SPEECH AND JUDICIAL ELECTIONS — Williams-Yulee v. Florida Bar — 5-4

Majority — Sotomayor, Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer and Roberts

-The court decided that judicial candidates may be prohibited by the state from personally asking supporters for money.

RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN PRISON — Holt v. Hobbs — 9-0            

-The court decided that the religious liberty of Muslim inmates had been violated by Arkansas correction officials when they forbid them from growing beards.