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August 2, 2004

Help is on the way(?)

With apologies to John Kerry for borrowing his slogan, it is official now that the Supreme Court will be returning to the Blakely world, and doing so soon. Of course, since the Court is responsible for starting the Blakely mania, and because so many critical Blakely questions now need answers (details here), no one should expect the new cases to resolve all the uncertainty that now surrounds sentencing law and policy. Nevertheless, any additional guidance on the meaning and consequences of Blakely should be very helpful for all the lower courts, legislatures, sentencing commissions and litigants struggling to make sense of the post-Blakely world.

Interestingly, the Supreme Court this morning decided to accept for review exactly what the Acting Solicitor General urged by granting cert. in Booker and Fanfan on the questions presented in those petitions. (Perhaps this is a first sign that the jurisprudence in the post-Blakely world will not be quite as pro-defense as many in the defense bar are hoping.) The Court did not follow the SG recommendation to schedule argument as early as September 13; argument is set for the afternoon of October 4. The Government's brief will be due Septmber 1, Respondents' briefs due September 21, and the Government's Reply due September 27.

You can get some of the details over at the SCOTUSBlog, and I am sure lots of commentary will soon follow here, there and elsewhere.

UPDATE: Set forth below is the full text of the Supreme Court's grant (and notably, on today's order list from the Court, I see no mention of the State of Washington's petition for rehearing or the Second Circuit's certified questions):
04-104 UNITED STATES V. BOOKER, FREDDIE J.
04-105 UNITED STATES V. FANFAN, DUCAN
The motion of the Acting Solicitor General for leave to file a reply brief in excess of the page limits is granted. The petition for a writ of certiorari is granted, and the petition for a writ of certiorari before judgment is granted. The cases are consolidated, and a total of two hours is allotted for oral argument. The brief of petitioner is to be filed with the Clerk and served upon opposing counsel on or before 3 p.m., Wednesday, September 1, 2004. The briefs of respondents are to be filed with the Clerk and served upon opposing counsel on or before 3 p.m., Tuesday, September 21, 2004. A reply brief, if any, is to be filed with the Clerk and served upon opposing counsel on or before 3 p.m., Monday, September 27, 2004. Oral argument is set for Monday, October 4, 2004.

August 2, 2004 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

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» Supreme Court Takes Two Blakely Cases from TalkLeft: The Politics of Crime
As expected, the Supreme Court today agreed to hear two cases decided adversely to the Government in the wake of its Blakely decision. Sentencing Law and Policy and Scotusblog have the details. Accepting all of the suggestions of the Justice... [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 2, 2004 1:03:32 PM

Comments

Interesting choices by SCOTUS... anyone have any idea why they took Fanfan unless they were going to declare the FSGs unconstitutional? If the FSGs are constitutional, wouldn't Booker be sufficient?

Posted by: Ryan S. | Aug 2, 2004 10:39:13 AM

If the FSGs are constitutional, wouldn't Booker be sufficient?

Posted by: Robe de Soirée 2013 | Dec 14, 2012 12:55:51 AM

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