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Posts Tagged ‘SCOTUS’

Voter ID’s day before the full Fifth Circuit

Here we go again. A top lawyer for Texas fiercely defended the state’s strictest-in-the-nation voter identification law on Tuesday, in a high-profile case that could ultimately determine at what point states that assert that they are protecting the integrity of elections cross over into disenfranchisement. Standing before all 15 members of the U.S. 5th Circuit […]

Judge Hanen’s bizarre order

WTF? A federal judge with a history of anti-immigrant sentiment ordered the federal government to turn over the names, addresses and “all available contact information” of over 100,000 immigrants living within the United States. He does so in a strange order that quotes extensively from movie scripts and that alleges a conspiracy of attorneys “somewhere […]

Full DC Circuit Court to review Clean Power Plan

From ThinkProgress, an update on yet another federal lawsuit involving Texas. The Clean Power Plan will get its day in court, but in September, not June — and by the full en banc D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, not the court’s normal three-judge panel that was scheduled to hear it in just over two weeks. […]

SCOTUS punts on birth control lawsuit

Wow. Zubik v. Burwell was supposed to be an epic showdown over the power of religious objectors to limit the rights of others. A sequel to the Court’s 2014 decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, Zubik involved regulations expanding women’s access to birth control that the conservative justices appeared to endorse in Hobby Lobby — even […]

New methane rules finalized

Gentlemen, start your lawyers. The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday issued its final rule for methane emissions from the oil and gas industry. The rule limits methane emissions from new oil and gas infrastructure and requires operators to submit to semi-annual or quarterly monitoring, depending on the type of operation. In addition, the agency took […]

Use of abortion pill rises

Until the Lege reconvenes, anyway. There’s been a sharp increase in the number of Texas women who are using the abortion pill to end their pregnancies now that federal officials have eased restrictions on the drug, according to officials at Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas. Until recently, the number of women seeking medically induced abortions […]

A new way to attack gerrymandering

From Think Progress: America’s anti-gerrymandering law is an incoherent mess. Thirty years ago, in Davis v. Bandemer, the Supreme Court held that a partisan gerrymander may be struck down as unconstitutional upon proof of “both intentional discrimination against an identifiable political group and an actual discriminatory effect on that group.” Yet the Court struggled to […]

Republican attorneys general file briefs in support of Texas’ voter ID law

Birds of a feather. Fifteen Republican-controlled states are wading into the contentious court fight over Texas’ voter ID law, arguing in a legal brief that similar laws around the country have already been upheld by the courts. […] Ahead of oral arguments [this] month, Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller is leading a coalition of GOP […]

Meyers’ voter ID lawsuit gets appellate hearing

I hope he gets to keep it going. [Court of Criminal Appeals Justice Lawrence] Meyers filed his state lawsuit in October 2014, while another legal challenge to the state’s voter ID law was pending in federal court in Corpus Christi. A federal judge overturned the law, but it has remained in effect during the state’s […]

SCOTUS declines to intervene in voter ID case for now

Not what I would have wanted, but not the end of the line. Even as a federal appeals court prepares to review the constitutionality of Texas’ controversial voter ID law, the law will remain in effect, the U.S. Supreme Court said in an order Friday. However, noting the time-sensitive nature of the case as the […]

The DAPA arguments at SCOTUS

Hard to say how this will go. A shorthanded Supreme Court heard a Texas-led challenge against President Barack Obama’s 2014 immigration plan Monday with sharp questions about whether the state could bring the case to begin with and if the president had overstepped. The eight justices appeared largely divided with the four liberal justices asking […]

DAPA’s day at SCOTUS

Another day, another huge Supreme Court case involving Texas, a big policy item from President Obama at stake, and the fate of millions of people hanging in the balance. The Supreme Court on Monday will hear the matter, one of its most significant this term, and a decision could be the most important related to […]

Supreme Court dismisses effort to dissolve state’s first same-sex marriage

I could be wrong, but I believe this closes the books on all the same-sex marriage litigation from last year. The Texas Supreme Court on Friday tossed out Attorney General Ken Paxton’s effort to undo the union of the first gay couple to legally wed in Texas. The court-ordered same-sex marriage of two Austin women had occurred months before such unions were legalized by […]

I now pronounce you man and machine

Yeah, no. Chris Sevier says he’s being denied his right to marry – his computer. The persistent Tennessee lawyer – who has carried his challenge to same-sex marriage to courthouses across the nation – has filed a lawsuit in federal court in Houston saying he and his 2011 MacBook were rejected for a marriage license […]

Texas-filed birther lawsuit against Ted Cruz dismissed

No surprise. A Houston federal judge tossed out a lawsuit Wednesday that challenged Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s eligibility to run for president. U.S. District Judge Gray H. Miller dismissed the suit with prejudice, meaning that Houston lawyer Boris Schwartz cannot file the suit again. He found that Schwartz, as a citizen and taxpayer in Texas, […]

SCOTUS asked to rule on Cruz birther lawsuit

What fun. A Utah man became the first to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to take up a “birther” lawsuit against Ted Cruz which challenges the White House hopeful’s eligibility for office. The request by Utah attorney Walter Wagner, who is representing himself in a case thrown out by a trial judge, was placed on […]

Is the Evenwel decision the last word on “one person one vote”?

Maybe not. With a long-running legal struggle raging over one of the nation’s strictest voter identification laws, Texas was already a prime battleground in a war between conservatives and liberals over voting rights. And on Monday, experts here and elsewhere say, the Supreme Court may have opened a second front. The court said unanimously that […]

SCOTUS upholds “one person, one vote”

Good news. In a unanimous decision released Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to uphold Texas’ current system for drawing legislative districts so that they are roughly equal in population. The Supreme Court’s ruling is a victory for legislators — mostly Democrats — who represent districts with significant populations of people who are not eligible […]

FDA makes medical abortion safer

Good news, at least until the Legislature reconvenes. Texas women will be able to obtain medical abortions later into their pregnancies under newly approved changes by the federal Food and Drug Administration. The FDA on Wednesday announced revised rules for drug-induced abortions — a method used early in a pregnancy — that will increase the […]

Texas AG files SCOTUS brief against Obama immigration plan

It’s what he does. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court Monday arguing against President Barack Obama’s plan to shield from deportation nearly 5 million people here illegally and give them temporary work permits. “The Obama Administration has consistently demonstrated disregard for the rule of law in asserting that […]

Can SCOTUS please intervene in the voter ID case?

The plaintiffs would like to know. Civil rights groups challenging Texas’ voter identification law are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to block the measure from being used during the 2016 general election. […] The civil rights groups filed a motion Friday with the Supreme Court asking it to vacate a Fifth Circuit ruling that has […]

Once more with SCOTUS and birth control

Here we go. In another major case concerning Texas women’s reproductive care, the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday will consider if the right to religious freedom is broad enough to completely exempt nonprofits with religious objections to birth control from providing women access to it through their insurance plans. The case, formally known as Zubik […]

The New Mexico abortion option

This should come as a surprise to no one. Though abortions among residents are down the number of out-of-state women traveling to New Mexico for abortions has grown significantly over the past three years. According to state Department of Health data, about 20 percent of the roughly 4,500 abortions performed in New Mexico in 2014 […]

How much more “undue” does it need to be?

HB2 is doing exactly what it was intended to do. A new report released Thursday shows Texas abortion patients traveled farther for services and experienced higher out-of-pocket costs following the closure of more than half of the state’s legal abortion providers in 2014. The closures came after the implementation of parts of Texas’ omnibus anti-abortion […]

One State Bar complaint against Paxton dismissed

A little bit of good news for our embattled AG, but not much. The State Bar of Texas has dismissed one of two pending complaints against Attorney General Ken Paxton. The dismissed complaint, filed in February by attorney and blogger Ty Clevenger, requested that the bar investigate and penalize Paxton for his failure to register […]

New EPA rules for methane coming

You know what will follow. Building on already pending rules to cut methane leaks from both new oil and gas wells and those on federal lands, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency now plans to bring to the oil sector the tough emissions standards it previously applied to automobiles and power plants. The change would bring […]

SCOTUS upholds same-sex adoption rights

Awesome. The U.S. Supreme Court in a victory for gay rights ruled Monday that states must honor adoptions by same-sex parents who move across state lines. Citing the Constitution’s “full faith and credit” clause, the justices in a unanimous opinion rebuked the Alabama Supreme Court for denying a lesbian’s right to visit the three children […]

Full Fifth Circuit will hear voter ID appeal

Here we go again. The full U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals agreed to take up the Texas voter ID case Wednesday, adding another chapter to the law’s convoluted journey through the federal court system. The decision to hear the case, Veasey v. Abbott, en banc comes more than six months after Texas Attorney General […]

Turner files amicus brief for Obama’s immigration executive action

Good. The city of Houston has added its voice to a friend of the court brief in the looming U.S. Supreme Court showdown over President Obama’s late-2014 executive actions on immigration, Mayor Sylvester Turner said Tuesday. Calling the president’s decisions “common sense and humane,” Turner urged the court to overturn lower court injunctions that have […]

SCOTUS also blocks Louisiana anti-abortion law for now

Forgot to note this over the weekend. The Supreme Court handed down a brief order Friday allowing four Louisiana abortion clinics to reopen after they were closed due to a recent decision by a conservative federal appeals court. Last week, an especially conservative panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit […]

SCOTUS allows mercury regulations to remain in effect

Good. The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a request from Texas and 19 other states to block a landmark federal rule requiring power plants to slash emissions of mercury, acid gases and other toxic metals — a setback for Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in a case where he saw earlier success. Without offering an explanation, […]

If you don’t have ID, you probably can’t get it

Just another reminder that our voter ID law sucks. At the time, civil rights groups and Democrats pointed out that hundreds of thousands of Texans lacked a driver license or other government-sanctioned forms of photo ID, and that cost and access could be a barrier to acquiring them. In one of the few concessions to […]

Oral arguments before SCOTUS on HB2

From Texas Monthly: It’s been a circuitous journey for HB2, the omnibus abortion bill the Texas Legislature passed 2013. Suits have been filed, the law has been overturned, appeals have been made. A collection of Texas abortion clinics, led by Whole Woman’s Health, filed the most debated lawsuit, which is aimed the broader provisions of […]

SCOTUS to hear HB2 oral arguments

It’s the big one. Before Wendy Davis took to the floor of the Texas Senate for an 11-hour filibuster that ultimately failed to stop sweeping new restrictions on abortion, there was Casey. Shorthand for Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the 1992 U.S. Supreme Court case reaffirmed a woman’s right to an abortion but gave states more […]