Public Citizen Litigation Group Supreme Court Assistance Project E-Update
Public Citizen Litigation Group Supreme Court Assistance Project


"LONG CONFERENCE" EDITION

View our
complete watch list for the September 29th Conference.



Our list includes many important cases on a wide range of topics. Read the entire list or use the clickable links in the Index to go right to cases on topics that interest you.

On Monday, September 29th, the Court will meet for its first scheduled conference of the 2008 Term, the so-called "long conference." There, the justices will consider whether to grant the hundreds of cert. petitions that have piled up over the summer recess.

Petitions of particular note include:

  • 07-811 Morris v. Center for Bio-Ethical Reform, Inc., on whether federal law enforcement officers who detained anti-abortion protesters are entitled to qualified immunity in response to a First Amendment retaliation claim;
  • 07-1182 Michigan Civil Rights Initiative Committee v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, on whether the drafters and sponsors of a state constitutional amendment have a right to intervene in litigation challenging the constitutionality of the amendment;
  • 07-1259 Haas v. Quest Recovery Services, Inc., on whether Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act abrogates state sovereign immunity;
  • 07-1366 Stanton v. Arizona Life Coalition, on whether specialty license plates are private or government speech;
  • 07-1434 Dixie National Life Insurance Co. v. Ward, on whether the federal court must defer to a state agency's interpretation of an insurance contract provision (Brian Wolfman of Public Citizen is assisting the respondent);
  • 07-1470 United States Steel Corp. v. Canadian Lumber Trade Alliance, on whether the NAFTA Implementation Act includes a private right of action;
  • 07-1491 Crawford v. Roe, on whether a state must transport an inmate for a nontherapeutic abortion;
  • 07-1495 Cerqueira v. American Airlines, Inc., on whether the airline can be held liable for the race-motivated decisions of its employees in denying service (Michael Kirkpatrick of Public Citizen is co-counsel for the petitioner);
  • 07-1506 Bell v. Bell, on whether a prosecutor may withhold exculpatory evidence if it was allegedly available in the public domain (the Court recently called for a response in 08-119 Lewis v. Tennessee, which raises the same question);
  • 07-1523 Lee v. Louisiana, on whether the Sixth Amendment permits non-unanimous jury verdicts in criminal trials; and
  • 08-41 Dupre v. Telxon Corp., on whether a presiding judge or justice must recuse when a party litigant has made exorbitant campaign contributions to that presiding judge or justice.

In addition, since our Watch List Summer Update, the Court has called for responses in several notable cases, including:

  • 08-118 Masferrer v. United States, on whether courts must apply a standard higher than preponderance of the evidence in determining facts that have a disproportionately large impact on sentencing.

Finally, Public Citizen is eagerly anticipating the upcoming oral arguments in:

  • 07-562 Altria Group, Inc. v. Good, on whether state fraudulent misrepresentation claims against cigarette manufacturers are preempted by the Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act. Brian Wolfman and Allison Zieve assisted the respondent at the cert. stage, and argument is set for October 6, 2008. This will be the first argument heard in the 2008 Term!
  • 07-463 Summers v. Earth Island Institute, on whether parties' facial challenge to Forest Service regulations were ripe and whether the parties have standing to bring the claim. Scott Nelson is co-counsel for the respondents, and argument is set for October 8, 2008.

For a list of all cases granted so far for the 2008 Term, Supreme Court's website.

View the full list of requests for responses and 2008 preview.



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About This List

Public Citizen has created this listserv to raise awareness of public interest issues presented to the U.S. Supreme Court. Before each Supreme Court conference, we send the list an update on pending Cert. Petitions of Public Interest, including both petitions we're monitoring and some petitions where Public Citizen Litigation Group is providing pro bono legal assistance.


For More Information:

Leah Nicholls
2007-08 SCAP Fellow
Alan Morrison Supreme Court Assistance Project
Public Citizen Litigation Group
(202) 588-7727

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