First Monday in October

The first Monday in October marks the opening day of the new Supreme Court term, and this year is no different! The term begins on October 5, and ten cases have been set for oral argument over the first two weeks. The Court will hear arguments about defendants’ Eighth Amendment rights in four death penalty cases, a challenge to the Texas legislature’s redistricting plan based on the “one-person, one-vote” guarantee of Reynolds v. Simms (1964), and an Equal Protection challenge to the use of race in undergraduate admissions decisions. It will also hear a case involving whether public employees should be required to pay local union fees even if they opted out of joining the union.

Other major cases coming up this term include OBB Personenverkehr AG v. Sachs, in which the court will determine when an entity is an “agent” of a “foreign state” under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, and Ocasio v. U.S., in which the court will determine whether a conspiracy to commit extortion requires that the conspirators agree to obtain property from someone outside the conspiracy.

Besides the SCOTUS Blog, other places to go for Supreme Court information include the Supreme Court’s website, where you can listen to oral arguments, the ABA’s Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, where you can find the parties’ briefs, and Supreme Podcast. This is shaping up to be another fascinating and controversial term. What will The Nine do? Listen to the arguments, read the briefs, and see if you can anticipate their decisions!