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October 10, 2005

Capital case on SCOTUS agenda Tuesday

Thanks to Lauren Kofke at SCOTUSblog, you can with this post get up to speed on the capital case, Brown v. Sanders, No. 04-980, to be argued tomorrow and also learn all about the difference between "weighing" and "non-weighing" death penalty states.  Given the buzz at the time of his nomination that CJ Roberts might be personally opposed to the death penalty, I will be eager to hear about the nature and tone of the new Chief's questions at oral argument (although I ultimately expect CJ Roberts' to vote a lot like his old boss CJ Rehnquist in capital cases).

At the time Justice O'Connor announced her retirement, she was rightly identified as a swing vote in some death penalty cases (see discussion here and here); it seems possible that her vote (or her replacement's vote) could be decisive in Brown v. Sanders and other capital cases on the High Court's calendar.  A helpful and effective review of the capital issues before SCOTUS this terms can be found at this page at the Death Penalty Information Center website.  It appears that, after tomorrow, the next big capital day for SCOTUS will be December 7 when both Oregon v. Guzak (discussed here) and Kansas v. Marsh (discussed here and here) will be argued.

October 10, 2005 at 07:35 PM | Permalink

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