U.S. Supreme Court http://kut.org en Supreme Court Rejects Gay Wedding Photography Case http://kut.org/post/supreme-court-rejects-gay-wedding-photography-case An appeal brought by a photographer who refused to take pictures of gay weddings was turned down by the Supreme Court on Monday morning. The court also refused to hear a challenge to a ban on campaign contributions by corporations, and allowed a district court case over U.S. Mon, 07 Apr 2014 17:28:56 +0000 Bill Chappell, NPR 10140 at http://kut.org Supreme Court Strikes Down Overall Limits On Political Contributions http://kut.org/post/supreme-court-strikes-down-overall-limits-political-contributions The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down an overall cap on the amount that large campaign donors can give to parties and candidates in a two-year election cycle.<p>In a 5-4 decision split between <a href="http://www.supremecourt.gov/about/biographies.aspx">conservatives and liberals on the high court</a>, the court said the limits were a violation of the First Amendment.<p>However, the ruling affects only aggregate donations on the total amount that a contributor can hand out to multiple candidates and political action committees, which is currently set at $123,200. Wed, 02 Apr 2014 15:32:02 +0000 Scott Neuman 10089 at http://kut.org Supreme Court Strikes Down Overall Limits On Political Contributions Hobby Lobby Contraceptive Case Goes Before Supreme Court http://kut.org/post/hobby-lobby-contraceptive-case-goes-supreme-court The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday in the latest challenge to the Obama health care overhaul.<p>This time the issue is whether for-profit corporations, citing religious objections, may refuse to provide some, or potentially all, contraceptive services in health plans offered to employees. It is a case that touches lots of hot-button issues.<p>In enacting the ACA, Congress required large employers to provide basic preventive care for employees. Tue, 25 Mar 2014 13:05:05 +0000 Nina Totenberg, NPR 10028 at http://kut.org Hobby Lobby Contraceptive Case Goes Before Supreme Court Is Texas' Abortion Law an Undue Burden? What's at Stake in New Rules http://kut.org/post/texas-abortion-law-undue-burden-whats-stake-new-rules <p>A federal appeals court is deciding whether certain provisions of Texas’ new abortion law are unconstitutional.</p><p>In making that decision, judges will have to weigh those provisions using what’s known as “the undue burden test.”</p><p>For two decades, judges have been weighing the constitutionality of abortion regulations using this concept.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/131364338&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Mon, 27 Jan 2014 13:06:41 +0000 Veronica Zaragovia 9643 at http://kut.org Is Texas' Abortion Law an Undue Burden? What's at Stake in New Rules What SCOTUS Inaction Means for the Texas Abortion Ban http://kut.org/post/what-scotus-inaction-means-texas-abortion-ban <p>The U.S. Supreme Court is declining to take up a case involving abortion.</p><p>State officials in Arizona were appealing a lower court’s decision to strike down a state law that would have banned most abortions after 20 weeks of gestation. But does the high court’s decision not to take up the case have implications on any future challenges to the 20-week ban that went into effect in Texas last year?</p><p> Mon, 13 Jan 2014 23:20:23 +0000 Veronica Zaragovia 9537 at http://kut.org What SCOTUS Inaction Means for the Texas Abortion Ban SCOTUS Won't Intervene in Texas Abortion Case http://kut.org/post/scotus-wont-intervene-texas-abortion-case <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.199999809265137px;">U.S. Supreme Court justices on Tuesday rejected a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.texastribune.org/2013/11/12/after-court-ruling-abortion-providers-ending-servi/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144);">request by abortion providers</a>&nbsp;to intervene in their lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of new abortion regulations in Texas that took effect in November.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.199999809265137px;">"Reasonable minds can perhaps disagree about whether the [U.S. 5th Circuit] Court of Appeals should have granted a stay in this case,"&nbsp;Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in the 5-4 opinion.&nbsp;"There is no doubt that the applicants have not carried their heavy burden of showing that doing so was a clear violation of accepted legal standards — which do not include a special 'status quo' standard for laws affecting abortion."</p><p> Tue, 19 Nov 2013 23:12:55 +0000 Becca Aaronson, Texas Tribune 9218 at http://kut.org SCOTUS Won't Intervene in Texas Abortion Case So What Exactly Happened with Fisher v. University of Texas? (Update) http://kut.org/post/so-what-exactly-happened-fisher-v-university-texas-update <p><strong>Update</strong>: The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is hearing arguments today in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, the case that questions UT's use of race in its admissions process.</p><p>In June, the U.S. Supreme Court punted the case back to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals after deciding the Fifth Circuit didn't apply the strictest scrutiny to UT's admissions policies.</p><p>While most UT&nbsp; students are admitted based on whether they’re in the top seven percent of their graduating class, some are admitted based on what the university calls a “holistic review.” An applicant’s race is one element of that review.</p><p>Back in 2008, a white student named Abigail Fisher was denied admission to UT under the holistic review. She sued saying she was a victim of reverse discrimination. Lower courts upheld UT’s affirmative action policy.</p><p> Wed, 13 Nov 2013 15:06:45 +0000 Kate McGee 8214 at http://kut.org So What Exactly Happened with Fisher v. University of Texas? (Update) Supreme Court Returns To Affirmative Action In Michigan Case http://kut.org/post/supreme-court-returns-affirmative-action-michigan-case The U.S. Supreme Court takes up the issue of affirmative action again Tuesday, but this time the question is not whether race may be considered as a factor in college admissions. Instead, this case tests whether voters can ban affirmative action programs through a referendum.<p>In 2003, the <a href="http://www.npr.org/news/specials/michigan/" target="_blank">high court upheld</a> the University of Michigan Law School's affirmative action policy. Tue, 15 Oct 2013 12:57:28 +0000 Nina Totenberg, NPR 8937 at http://kut.org Supreme Court Returns To Affirmative Action In Michigan Case Both Sides on Texas Abortion Bill Welcome Future Legal Challenges http://kut.org/post/both-sides-texas-abortion-bill-welcome-future-legal-challenges <p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F100589260" width="100%"></iframe>A familiar sound filled the Texas House on Wednesday morning – the voting bell, applause and protesters.</p><p><a href="http://kutnews.org/post/texas-house-approves-abortion-restrictions" target="_blank">House Bill 2 passed</a>, 96 to 49 nays, and it's&nbsp;also expected to pass the Senate, late this week or early next. Opponents of the new abortion restrictions say regardless, it will end up in court.</p> Thu, 11 Jul 2013 11:17:15 +0000 Veronica Zaragovia 8338 at http://kut.org Both Sides on Texas Abortion Bill Welcome Future Legal Challenges Poll: Most Texans Still Don't Want You to Mess with Them http://kut.org/post/poll-most-texans-still-dont-want-you-mess-them <p>A <a href="http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/main/2013/07/texas-miscellany.html">recent poll</a> from Public Policy Polling found 78 percent of Texans agree:</p><p>Don't Mess with Texas.</p><p>Nine percent say people should mess with Texas, and 13 percent are unsure.</p><p> Fri, 05 Jul 2013 19:00:00 +0000 Gefei Liu & Kate McGee 8297 at http://kut.org Poll: Most Texans Still Don't Want You to Mess with Them U.S. Supreme Court Says Silence Can Be Used Against You in Trial http://kut.org/post/us-supreme-court-says-silence-can-be-used-against-you-trial <p>With all the coverage of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decisions last week regarding affirmative action, the Voting Rights Act and same-sex marriage, it’s not surprising some of the court’s other decisions didn’t receive as much attention, including one case that originated in Texas:&nbsp;<em><a href="http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/salinas-v-texas/">Salinas v Texas</a>.</em></p><p><em>&nbsp;</em>That decision is expected to have a big impact on the rights of criminal suspects on trial.&nbsp;</p><p> Mon, 01 Jul 2013 18:01:48 +0000 Kate McGee 8258 at http://kut.org U.S. Supreme Court Says Silence Can Be Used Against You in Trial How This Week's 3 Big Supreme Court Decisions Affect Texas http://kut.org/post/how-weeks-3-big-supreme-court-decisions-affect-texas <p>This week was a busy one for the U.S. Supreme Court. It ruled on cases involving three major issues: affirmative action, same sex marriage and voting rights.&nbsp;</p><p>All three of these cases have national implications, but they also mean changes for Texans, too.&nbsp;</p><p> Sun, 30 Jun 2013 13:00:00 +0000 Kate McGee 8254 at http://kut.org How This Week's 3 Big Supreme Court Decisions Affect Texas Changes to the Voting Rights Act: What Texans Need to Know http://kut.org/post/changes-voting-rights-act-what-texans-need-know <p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F98886212" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its<a href="http://kutnews.org/post/voting-rights-act-partially-overturned-texas-implements-voter-id-law"> second big decision of the week</a>, striking down part of the Voting Rights Act. Supporters praised the decision, calling it a step forward in eliminating antiquated aspects of the law. Opponents of the decision say it makes it easier to discriminate against minorities.</p><p> Fri, 28 Jun 2013 22:47:08 +0000 Kate McGee 8251 at http://kut.org Changes to the Voting Rights Act: What Texans Need to Know DOMA Struck Down: What’s Next for Same-Sex Couples in Texas? http://kut.org/post/doma-struck-down-what-s-next-same-sex-couples-texas <p><strong>Update: </strong>The U.S. Supreme Court’s rulings on two same-sex marriage cases today means those unions will now be recognized by the federal government. In separate cases, the court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, and the state of California can now resume efforts to legalize same sex marriage.</p><p>But neither of these rulings will directly affect Texas residents.&nbsp;</p><p>“The ruling today was limited in the sense it didn’t extend to strike down defense of marriage acts that exist on state level," says Chuck Smith, executive director of <a href="http://www.equalitytexas.org/">Equality Texas</a>.</p><p></p><p>Texas’ own<a href="http://governor.state.tx.us/priorities/families/stronger_families/defense_of_marriage_act/"> Defense Against Marriage Act </a>will remain on the books. Gov. Rick Perry signed the law in 2003. &nbsp;In 2005, the state legislature also passed a constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage. If that amendment were repealed, it would need two-thirds approval by the state House and Senate. It would then go to voters for final approval.&nbsp;</p><p>Same sex marriage is legal in 12 states and the District of Columbia.&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 26 Jun 2013 17:31:00 +0000 Wells Dunbar & Kate McGee 8217 at http://kut.org DOMA Struck Down: What’s Next for Same-Sex Couples in Texas? Voting Rights Act Partially Overturned; Texas Implements Voter ID Law http://kut.org/post/voting-rights-act-partially-overturned-texas-implements-voter-id-law <p>The Supreme Court has overturned a portion of the Voting Rights Act. Texas Attorney General&nbsp;Greg&nbsp;Abbott says this morning’s decision means a Texas voter ID law "will take effect immediately."&nbsp;<em>Scroll down for updates.&nbsp;</em></p><p class="p1">The high court struck down <a href="http://www.justice.gov/crt/about/vot/misc/sec_4.php">Section 4</a> of the act, which establishes a formula to identify portions of the county (primarily the South) where changes to elections must be approved by the Department of Justice. That was to ensure minority voting rights weren’t infringed upon.</p><p class="p1">From the court's opinion:</p><blockquote><p class="p1">"Coverage today is based on decades-old data and eradicated practices. The formula captures States by reference to literacy tests and low voter registration and turnout in the 1960s and early 1970s. But such tests have been banned for over 40 years. And voter registration and turnout numbers in covered States have risen dramatically."</p></blockquote><p class="p1">The court didn’t do away with Section 5 of the act – the portion that allows the Department of Justice to reject state laws it sees as discriminatory. Instead, the court says the new standards should be created, instead of the expanded coverage called for under Section 4. &nbsp;</p><p> Tue, 25 Jun 2013 22:39:12 +0000 Luke Quinton, Wells Dunbar & Kate McGee 8218 at http://kut.org Voting Rights Act Partially Overturned; Texas Implements Voter ID Law