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Five Major SCOTUS Decisions Expected This Summer

Posted on Thursday, May 2, 2024
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by Aaron Flanigan
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AMAC EXCLUSIVE

us supreme court justices

Every June, legal analysts, political pundits, and Court watchers brace for what has become one of the most significant—and oftentimes nerve-wracking—annual political events: the yearly release of long-awaited Supreme Court opinions.

The Court already made an early splash this term in March with its historic 9-0 ruling that Colorado does not have the constitutional authority to unilaterally remove Donald Trump from its state primary ballots. In just a few weeks, the justices are expected to hand down more noteworthy decisions that could have significant implications on American politics, the November presidential election, and the future of the law itself.

Here are five cases to follow.

1. Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo

At the beginning of the Court’s term last fall, many legal conservatives initially considered Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo to be the highest-profile case on the Court’s docket this year.

In Loper, the Court will decide whether to revisit the doctrine of so-called “Chevron deference.” That legal precedent holds that federal judges must defer to executive agencies’ interpretation of the law — thereby handing unelected bureaucrats the power to essentially make law by deciding what the law means.

The specific case concerns a group of family-owned fisheries who challenged a regulation enforced by the National Marine Fisheries Service, which, according to the Heritage Foundation, “required them not only to carry a person serving as a monitor on their fishing boats to ensure compliance with federal fishing regulations, but also to pay the salaries of the monitors they carry”—even though no such regulations are enumerated in statutory law.

Following oral arguments in the case in January, SCOTUSblog reported that a “majority of the justices seemed ready to jettison the [Chevron] doctrine or at the very least significantly limit it.”

The Court’s ruling in this case could yield significant consequences for the future of the administrative state and its ever-increasing role in our national political life.

2. Murthy v. Missouri

In Murthy v. Missouri—one of several cases the Court is considering this term that relate to social media censorship and content regulation—the justices will decide whether federal government requests for social media companies to regulate so-called “misinformation” qualifies as state action and deprives American citizens of their First Amendment rights.

The case stems from the Biden administration’s 2021 efforts to pressure social media companies to remove online content that challenged the government’s narrative on COVID-19. The administration’s apparent censorship campaign prompted state-level challenges in Missouri and Louisiana on the basis that such actions violated users’ First Amendment right to free speech.

Following the March oral arguments in this case, a majority of the justices reportedly appeared poised to side with the Biden administration. This could empower the White House to embark on a similar censorship campaign in conjunction with social media companies in the months leading up to the presidential election.

In response to the oral arguments in this case, Heritage Foundation scholar Daniel Cochrane noted that “Big Tech’s vast unchecked power over what we see and say online must be addressed.” He continued: “As the 2024 election approaches, courts and policymakers must act to prevent both Big Tech and big government from undermining differing political voices and ideas.”

3. City of Grants Pass, Oregon v. Johnson

In April, the Court heard arguments in City of Grants Pass, Oregon v. Johnson, in which the justices will decide whether a city can ban homeless people from sleeping in public.

In 2022, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that the act of fining someone who does not have access to shelter for sleeping on public property violates the “cruel and unusual punishment” clause of the Eighth Amendment. But following the Court’s April 22 oral arguments, the justices seem prepared to reverse the lower court ruling.

According to The Daily Signal, Theane Evangelis, who argued on behalf of the City of Grand Pass, contended that “the 9th Circuit had ‘constitutionalized’ the responses of local governments that were trying to deal with a thorny public policy issue, adding that the appeals court had ‘tied the city’s hand.’”

Several of the justices—including Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh—appeared sympathetic to Evangelis’s argument, with Kavanaugh expressing his desire to “avoid the need for having to constitutionalize an area and have a federal judge superintend this rather than the local community.”

As American communities continue to deal with homeless encampments and their corresponding threats to public health and safety, the Court’s ruling could empower cities all across the nation to crack down on the homelessness crisis and restore the rule of law in America’s cities and suburbs.

4. FDA v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, Moyle v. United States, and Idaho v. United States

Two years after the High Court handed down Dobbs v. Jackson—the landmark case that overruled Roe v. Wade and empowered states to make their own laws regulating abortion—the justices once again stand on the precipice of handing down several major abortion decisions.

In FDA v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, the Court heard arguments pertaining to access to mifepristone, a common abortion-inducing drug. According to SCOTUSblog, “a majority of the justices appeared ready to throw out the dispute over the FDA’s expansion of access to the drug in 2016 and 2021 because the challengers in the case—several individual doctors and groups of doctors who are opposed to abortion on religious or moral grounds—do not have a legal right to sue, known as standing.” In other words, if the Court rules as expected, the drug will likely remain available for the time being.

In Moyle v. United States and Idaho v. United States, the Court will decide whether a federal law requiring hospitals to provide “necessary stabilizing treatment” in emergency situations can be used to preempt state-level pro-life laws, and thereby mandate abortions in hospitals nationwide. Though the Court appeared relatively split during oral arguments, legal commentators have assessed that the Court seems as though it is prepared to side with Idaho, thereby allowing the Gem State—as well as other states—to enforce democratically enacted pro-life legislation.

5. Trump v. United States

Perhaps no Court case this term has commanded as much media attention, attracted as much political controversy, and raised more groundbreaking implications for constitutional law than Trump v. United States, in which the Supreme Court will decide whether presidents are legally immune from criminal charges based on official acts they took in office.

At the heart of this case is Jack Smith’s politically motivated indictment against Trump, which—without any basis in the law—seeks to criminally charge Trump for the events of January 6, 2021.

Trump’s attorney, John Sauer, told the Court that the “presidency as we know it” would change forever in the absence of presidential immunity—and would allow the president’s political rivals to criminally charge future Commanders-in-Chief for engaging in official presidential duties. Sauer raised, for instance, the possibility that Joe Biden could be charged with fomenting the border crisis, or that Barack Obama could be charged with launching drone strikes resulting in the death of American citizens.

Based on initial observations, Court watchers agree that the justices are likely to side with Trump on at least some aspects of presidential immunity—further raising the prospect that Trump’s Washington, D.C.-based trial could be postponed until after the November election, which would serve as both a massive tactical victory for the former president and a major institutional victory for the office of the presidency.

As Americans prepare for the end of the High Court’s term and await yet another summer of major decisions, a handful of significant legal, political, and electoral questions are at stake—and voters of every political stripe will be watching closely.

Aaron Flanigan is the pen name of a writer in Washington, D.C.

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Rik
Rik
2 months ago

To Almost Every Democrat President Trump Is “Guilty” and ONLY Because He Doesn’t Believe in Communism like Today’s Democrats! ReElect Trump for President!

Philip Seth Hammersley
Philip Seth Hammersley
2 months ago

The main question is this: Will the justices decide these cases based on original intent of The Founders, or be intimidated by Schumer and his ilk who threatened them with VIOLENCE (“we’re coming after you”)?

Melinda
Melinda
2 months ago

So far the court seems fairly evenhanded in following the constitution, at least as far as federalism goes. If the growth of bureaucracy can be restrained, I’m all for it. Laws should be made by the state’s or Congress, although there are too many laws already.

Thinking
Thinking
2 months ago

The democrats are ruling this country through the courts. Every plan they have put forth and is not accepted immediately by the congress ends up in some court. When a plan is accepted with some changes they take it to the Supreme Court. Once they have ruled ole Joe ignores it anyway and does his thing. Student loans forgiveness comes to mind. Abortion rights handed back to the states. The dems want to control every aspects of our lives and they want to do away with the constitution. It doesn’t matter what the Supreme Court decides Joe Bama does what he wants anyway. Give the voice back to the people. All the people of this country or we will be silenced forever.

Theresa Coughlin
Theresa Coughlin
2 months ago

re: Chevron deference: If unelected federal bureaucrats can essentially make laws by deciding what they mean, what’s the point of having a Congress? last time I looked, it’s CONGRESS’ job to make laws. If they don’t want to do that job, they should find another line of work.

LauraC
LauraC
2 months ago

Seeing as it is the judiciary’s job to interpret laws, I don’t get why unelected bureaucrats are doing that job. The swamp creatures seem to love telling all of us how to live and think, including the Supreme Court. Time to severely rein them in, for all our sakes.

Squirrelette
Squirrelette
2 months ago

I think America needs to invite God back into protecting this Nation again so he can heal this narion. America has allowed the wicked to take over and disrespect everything. I’m sure God isn’t happy with the stuff he sees and I would bet the wild weather has a lot to do with it.

Robert Zuccaro
Robert Zuccaro
2 months ago

There should be a law for obvious frivolous persecution; apparently there isn’t if your name is “Trump”.

TheMule
TheMule
2 months ago

Does it really matter what decisions they make now? DIdn’t SCOTUS rule that Biden couldn’t pawn off student loan debt onto the taxpayers, and he’s just doing it anyway. The DOJ and FBI are now full extensions of the DNC; so they won’t enforce the law against high ranking corrupt democrats but will be happy to railroad anyone ala Trump style who is a threat to the DNC stranglehold on DC executive branch power.

We’re pretty much past legal solutions to the democrat cancer that has turned DC into an organized crime family parasitically living off the rest of the nation and sealing that power with open election fraud and rioting mobs at their beck and call within days notice.

Pat
Pat
2 months ago

Am I correct that heads of state from around the world have legal immunity when they are in the U S. ?
(? Kind of immunity)
Strange to have foreign heads of state have immunity but not the leader in the country they visit.

Mike
Mike
2 months ago

Obviously in regards to the case with president Trump, the other presidents prior to him better hope that the Supreme Court’s decision side with president Trump. This is an easy win for DJT if they stand with the founders of this country.

Broccoli Free Zone
Broccoli Free Zone
2 months ago

My wife and I saw a woman (?) laying down in the middle of a sidewalk as we were returning from the grocery on Tuesday. I reminded my wife that HALF of homeless people are 65 and older. She wants a new car (to live in?).

Bill Brooks
Bill Brooks
2 months ago

It appears that Biden and Obama should both be hoping that Trump wins this case in the Supreme Court.

Pam
Pam
2 months ago

Please sign up to be a poll worker – it’s the most important thing we can do to save the country – NOW!

Joe
Joe
2 months ago

But NOTHING will change (for the better)

Joe Cogan
Joe Cogan
2 months ago

“As American communities continue to deal with homeless encampments and their corresponding threats to public health and safety, the Court’s ruling could empower cities all across the nation to crack down on the homelessness crisis and restore the rule of law in America’s cities and suburbs.”
Jesus wept. How about recognizing that they’re human beings, and helping them with the problems that made them homeless in the first place, instead of punishing people who have nothing?

Steve Smith
Steve Smith
2 months ago

Loper Bright is going to do absolutely nothing. The leftist judges will simply do the same thing they have always done and just not call it Chevron. they have already started doing so in preparation. The deep state lives and it will take a major act of Congress to kill it.

chrisford1
chrisford1
2 months ago

IF the Court sides with Biden and State Censorship of anything those in power deem “disinformation”, , I hope the White House will take control of reviewing SCOTUS decisions for any errors and do the needed “fact checks” using fact checkers in the Executive Branch – before allowing any SCOTUS decision be published in the media.

Laura Bentz
Laura Bentz
2 months ago

I love how they just allow a person to take a pill to kill a baby, despite the side effects, and that’s okay. And morality is not a consideration. I guess murder is okay then as long as it’s a defenseless being like an unborn child. What a sick world we live in!

SilentMajority
SilentMajority
2 months ago

I am pretty surprised that the Justices appear perplexed on what is the constitutional course of action for a President that commits treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. It is literally spelled out. Impeachment, then a trial in the senate. Upon conviction, the president can be removed. Afterwhich, the protections of the POTUS no longer apply and they can be criminally charged for the crime. This notion that a president can use SEAL teams to kill political rivals without consequence is just wrong and dishonest.

Secret Service agents rush Donald Trump off the stage.(AP: Evan Vucci)
President Joe Biden greets President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping, Wednesday, November 15, 2023, at the Filoli Estate in Woodside, California.(Official White House Photo by Carlos Fyfe)
President Joe Biden speaks on the phone with Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick to discuss his approval of a FEMA disaster declaration in response to the impacts of Hurricane Beryl, Tuesday, July 9, 2024, in the Oval Office of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz)

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