Supreme Court Review 2015/2016 TERM
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 14, 2016

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A weekly discussion of the U.S. Supreme Court’s most recent opinions, oral arguments and grants of certiorari.

NOW PLAYING... January 31, 2016 Court Chides Idaho Supreme Court for Challenging its Power to Interpret Federal Law

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PODCASTS
Court Chides Idaho Supreme Court for Challenging its Power to Interpret Federal Law (01/31/2016)

On this episode we review the Court's opinion in James v. City of Boise, which considered whether the Idaho Supreme Court correctly concluded that two prior Supreme Court decisions do not bind state courts because as it argued the Supreme Court “does not have authority to limit the discretion of state courts where such limitation is not contained in the statute."

Did the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission overstep its authority with its Demand Response program? (01/30/2016)

On this episode we review the Court's opinion in FERC v. Electric Power Supply, which considers whether the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission may offer incentives for energy users to reduce power consumption during peak demand periods.

Retroactivity of Miller v. Alabama Prohibiting Life Without Parole for Juvenile Defendants (01/29/2016)

On this episode, we review the Court's opinion this week in Montgomery v. Louisiana, which consider whether a prior Supreme Court ruling, Miller v. Alabama (2012), should apply retroactively to juvenile defendants that were sentenced to life without parole prior to the Court's decision. Miller v. Alabama held that mandatory sentences of life without the possibility of parole violates the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against "cruel and unusual punishment."

Does the First Amendment Protect Apolitical or Politically Apathetic Citizens Against Adverse Employment Actions? (01/23/2016)

On this episode, we review the oral arguments this week in Heffernan v. Paterson, N.J., which considers whether the First Amendment bars the government from demoting a public employee based on a supervisor's misperception of that employee political affiliation. Jeffrey J. Heffernan was demoted when he was seen carrying a political opponent's lawn sign. In fact, Mr. Heffernan was simply picking up the sign for his sick mother, who had her lawn sign stolen the previous day.

Did Congress Violate Separation of Powers by Directing a Statute to a Particular Case? (01/17/2016)

On this episode, we review the oral arguments in Bank Markazi v. Peterson, which asks the Supreme Court to resolve whether §502 of the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 directed to “the financial assets that are identified in and the subject of proceedings in New York in Peterson et al. v. Islamic Republic of Iran et al., Case No. 10 Civ. 4518," violates the separation of powers. At stake is nearly $2 billion of bonds of the Central Bank of Iran that plaintiffs are seeking to attach to pay judgments for hundreds of Americans killed in multiple Iran?sponsored terrorist attacks.