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May 01, 2009

Supreme Court Decisions This Term

Since everyone is focussed on the Supreme Court, the most recent "StatPack" hosted at SCOTUSBlog makes interesting reading. SCOTUSBlog summarizes:

Justice John Paul Stevens is winning the contrarian award so far. He’s been in the majority least frequently–32 out of 48 opinions, or 66.7%–and has the highest rate of disagreement with other justices. He’s disagreed completely with Justice Antonin Scalia and Justice Clarence Thomas in 48% of cases and with Chief Justice John G. Roberts and Justice Samuel A. Alito in 46%. In comparison, at this point in OT07, Justice Stevens had disagreed with the conservative justices in 21%-36% of cases. Justice David H. Souter is close behind–he’s been in the majority in only one more case than Justice Stevens and has similarly high rates of disagreement with the conservative justices.

Also at SCOTUSBlog, attorney Tom Goldstein speculates about Obama's likely choices to replace Justice Souter. They include the obvious (Sotomayer, Kagan) and the horrifying (Granholm), which I had somehow managed to put out of my mind.

My bet is that – this early on – it’s a big and diverse list. It would have some very well known judges (for example, Diane Wood and Sonia Sotomayor), academics (Elena Kagan (now Solicitor General), Pam Karlan, and Kathleen Sullivan), and politicians (Jennifer Granholm, Amy Klobuchar, Claire McCaskill, and Janet Napolitano).

He takes it as a given that Obama's first pick will be a woman.

Update: Politico has an early oppo memo on Sotomayor, Kagan, and Wood.


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posted by Gabriel Malor at 10:09 AM

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