Monday status conference: All about the judiciary

usscThis morning the Supreme Court hears arguments in two cases, the first considering whether the failure by the Department of Veterans Affairs to give notice to benefits claimants as required by law is prejudicial (Peake v. Sanders). The second case  asks whether a plaintiff states a Sherman Act claim by alleging that the defendant – a vertically integrated retail competitor with an alleged monopoly at the wholesale level but no antitrust duty to provide the wholesale input to competitors – engaged in a “price squeeze” by leaving insufficient margin between wholesale and retail prices to allow the plaintiff to compete (Pacific Bell v. Linkline Communications).

Meanwhile,

Supreme docket grows: The Supreme Court added two cases to its docket Friday – one considers whether the president may order that people picked up in the United States be detained indefinitely and without criminal charges, and the other asks whether direct evidence of discrimination must be shown in order to obtain a mixed-motive jury instruction in non-Title VII cases. (Bloomberg)

GOP scores in the 6th: The Washington Post‘s R. Jeffrey Smith reports that judges appointed by President George W. Bush to the 6th Circuit court of Appeals “acting in cooperation with other Republican appointees on the court, [have] repeatedly organized full-court rehearings to overturn rulings by panels dominated by Democratic appointees.” (WaPo).

tedkennedyKennedy leaves Judiciary Committee: Sen. Edward Kennedy said he will step down from the Senate Judiciary Committee – where he has led vocal fights against the confirmation of some GOP-nominated federal judges from the districts to the Supreme Court. Kennedy said he will focus on healthcare reform. (Boston Globe).

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