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As the 2015 Term opens: The Court’s unusual Eighth Amendment focus

As the 2015 Term opens: The Court’s unusual Eighth Amendment focus

  • September 23, 2015
  • Paul
  • Comments Off on As the 2015 Term opens: The Court’s unusual Eighth Amendment focus

(SCOTUSblog) – Last June, the Supreme Court’s Term ended not with the same-sex marriage opinions (announced three days earlier), but rather with Justice Stephen Breyer’s surprising and comprehensive opinion (joined by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg) in Glossip v. Gross, which announced that both Justices now “believe it highly likely that the death penalty violates the Eighth Amendment.”  Justice Antonin Scalia responded that if the Court were to grant merits review on that question, then he correspondingly “would ask that counsel also brief whether” longstanding Eighth Amendment precedents, “beginning with Trop [v. Dulles (1958)], should be overruled.”  Meanwhile, in the Glossip argument, Justice Samuel Alito had candidly described (More…)

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