Nina Totenberg http://publicradiodelmarva.net en Group Goes Online To Find Affirmative Action Plaintiffs http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/group-goes-online-find-affirmative-action-plaintiffs A group opposed to affirmative action in higher education is taking the unprecedented step of looking for plaintiffs online.<p>The Project on Fair Representation is advertising for college applicants willing to challenge Harvard University, the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the University of Wisconsin, Madison.<p>When the Supreme Court issued a ruling last spring that made affirmative action programs more legally difficult to sustain, project director Edward Blum promised that more "costly and polarizing litigation" would soon be filed against university affirmative action pro Mon, 07 Apr 2014 22:32:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 52161 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Strikes Down Pillar Of Campaign Finance Limits http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-strikes-down-pillar-campaign-finance-limits The U.S. Supreme Court has once again erased from the books a major provision of the nation's campaign finance law. By a 5-to-4 vote, the justices removed the cap on the total amount of money that donors can contribute to candidates and parties in each election. Prior to Wednesday's ruling, the aggregate limit was $123,000. Now there is no limit.<p>The ruling is the latest in a series of decisions that have all but demolished the campaign reforms adopted by Congress beginning 40 years ago in the wake of the Watergate scandal. Wed, 02 Apr 2014 20:03:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 51898 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Strikes Down Pillar Of Campaign Finance Limits Protesters Want To Sue Secret Service: Do They Have The Right? http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/secret-service-under-high-court-scrutiny-potential-first-amendment-violations On a day when three of President Obama's Secret Service agents were put on leave for "<a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/03/26/294805521/secret-service-agents-recalled-from-overseas-for-drinking">disciplinary reasons</a>," the agency came under scrutiny in the U.S. Supreme Court for a separate incident.<p>The court heard arguments in a case testing whether Secret Service agents can be sued for moving a group of protesters out of earshot of President George W. Wed, 26 Mar 2014 20:56:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 51500 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Protesters Want To Sue Secret Service: Do They Have The Right? Justices Divide By Gender In Hobby Lobby Contraception Case http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/birth-control-mandate-goes-under-high-court-microscope There was a clear difference of opinion between male and female justices at the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday. The issue was whether for-profit corporations, citing religious objections, may refuse to include contraception coverage in the basic health plan now mandated under the Affordable Care Act.<p>The female justices were clearly supportive of the contraception mandate, while a majority of the male justices were more skeptical.<p>The lead challenger in the case is the Hobby Lobby corporation, a chain of 500 arts and crafts stores that has 13,000 employees. Tue, 25 Mar 2014 20:16:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 51423 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Hobby Lobby Contraceptive Case Goes Before Supreme Court http://publicradiodelmarva.net/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 07:18:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 51372 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Hobby Lobby Contraceptive Case Goes Before Supreme Court Lawrence Walsh, Who Investigated Iran-Contra Scandal, Dies At 102 http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/lawrence-walsh-who-investigated-iran-contra-scandal-dies-102 Lawrence Walsh, the special prosecutor who investigated charges of wrongdoing and criminality by top Reagan administration officials in the Iran-Contra scandal, has died.<p>He was 102.<p>The Iran-Contra affair merged two secret operations. On President Reagan's orders, his administration provided weapons to rebels opposed to the leftist government in Nicaragua. At the time, Congress had barred the Pentagon and CIA from giving the aid to the so-called Contras. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 21:46:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 51168 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Lawrence Walsh, Who Investigated Iran-Contra Scandal, Dies At 102 Lawrence Walsh: His Judgment Came Not From Confidence But From Insecurity http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/lawrence-walsh-his-judgment-came-not-confidence-insecurity <em>In 2003 the American Bar Association published Lawrence Walsh's autobiography, </em><a href="http://books.google.com/books/about/The_Gift_of_Insecurity.html?id=Ufg6AQAAIAAJ">The Gift of Insecurity; A Lawyer's Life</a><em>. Walsh </em><a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/03/20/291999738/lawrence-walsh-who-investigated-iran-contra-scandal-dies-at-102">died Wednesday at age 102</a><em>. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 21:43:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 51166 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Lawrence Walsh: His Judgment Came Not From Confidence But From Insecurity High Court Extends Whistleblower Protections http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/high-court-extends-whistleblower-protections The U.S. Tue, 04 Mar 2014 21:52:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 50248 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net With Death Penalty, How Should States Define Mental Disability? http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/death-penalty-how-should-states-define-mental-disability Twelve years after banning the execution of the "mentally retarded," the U.S. Supreme Court is examining the question of who qualifies as having mental retardation, for purposes of capital cases, and who does not.<p>In 2002, the high court ruled in <em>Atkins v. Virginia</em> that executing "mentally retarded" people is unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment. Mon, 03 Mar 2014 08:35:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 50154 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Allows Stanford Ponzi Scheme Suits To Go Forward http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-allows-stanford-ponzi-scheme-suits-go-forward The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that investor lawsuits may go forward against investment advisors and others for allegedly helping Texas tycoon Allen Stanford in a massive fraud.<p>Stanford was sentenced to 110 years in prison for bilking investors in a $7 billion Ponzi scheme. The investors who lost money are suing others involved in the scheme, contending that they also engaged in misleading conduct.<p>The targets of the suit include investment companies, insurance brokers, law firms, and others. They were sued by investors in state court and tried to have the suits thrown out. Wed, 26 Feb 2014 19:21:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 49963 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Allows Stanford Ponzi Scheme Suits To Go Forward Supreme Court Opens Door To Easier Police Searches http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/high-court-opens-door-easier-police-searches The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that police may search a home without a warrant if one person who lives there consents, even if another occupant has previously objected. The 6-3 decision would seem to seriously undercut a 2006 high court ruling that barred warrantless searches of a home where the occupants disagreed on giving consent.<p>In 2006, the justices, by a close vote, ruled that when two occupants of a home disagree about whether to allow police to conduct a warrantless search, the police must defer to the person who objects. Tue, 25 Feb 2014 21:19:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 49908 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Justice Scalia And Jon Stewart Concur Chicago Pizza Isn't Pizza http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/justice-scalia-and-jon-stewart-concur-chicago-pizza-isnt-pizza Justice Antonin Scalia and Jon Stewart, host of <em>The Daily Show With Jon Stewart</em> on Comedy Central, are, gasp, in agreement!<p>Both have rendered scorching opinions on a major national controversy — pizza. Specifically, Chicago-style, deep-dish pizza.<p>For months, Stewart and Chicago mayor Rahm Emmanuel have been dueling on the subject, with Stewart ranting that deep-dish pizza "is not pizza." It is, he <a href="http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-november-13-2013/tower-record">said</a>, "tomato soup in a bread bowl ... Tue, 18 Feb 2014 23:14:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 49516 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Justice Scalia And Jon Stewart Concur Chicago Pizza Isn't Pizza A Union For Home Health Aides Brings New Questions To Supreme Court http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/illinois-case-brings-new-union-questions-supreme-court The U.S. Tue, 21 Jan 2014 08:18:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 47967 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net A Union For Home Health Aides Brings New Questions To Supreme Court Supreme Court To Decide If Warrant Needed To Search Cellphone http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-decide-if-warrant-needed-search-cellphone The U.S. Fri, 17 Jan 2014 23:04:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 47864 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court To Decide If Warrant Needed To Search Cellphone Justices Appear Divided On Abortion Clinic Buffer Zones http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/high-court-hears-arguments-abortion-buffer-zones The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on Wednesday in a case testing laws that establish buffer zones to protect patients and staff going into abortion clinics. In 2000, the court upheld 8-foot buffer zones that move with individuals as they walk into clinics. But now the issue is back before a more conservative court, and the conservative chief justice appears to hold the outcome in his hands.<p>The case before the court comes from Massachusetts, where two people were shot and killed and five others were wounded at abortion clinics in 1994. Wed, 15 Jan 2014 22:31:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 47758 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Justices Appear Divided On Abortion Clinic Buffer Zones Supreme Court Considers Legality Of Abortion Clinic Buffer Zones http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-considers-legality-abortion-clinic-buffer-zones The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Wednesday in a case testing the constitutionality of buffer zones at abortion clinics.<p>Fourteen years ago, the <a href="http://www.oyez.org/cases/1990-1999/1999/1999_98_1856" target="_blank">court upheld</a> Colorado's 8-foot "floating" buffer zones around individuals to protect patients and staff entering and exiting these clinics. Wed, 15 Jan 2014 08:02:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 47709 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Considers Legality Of Abortion Clinic Buffer Zones Balance Of Power At Stake In High Court Case http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/balance-power-stake-high-court-case The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Monday in a big constitutional fight over the balance of power between the president and the Senate.<p>At issue is whether the president's power to make temporary appointments during the Senate recess can be curtailed by the use of pro forma Senate sessions during which no business is conducted.<p>During the holidays from mid-December 2011 to Jan. 20, 2012, the Senate did not meet as it usually does. Failing to get the Republican House to grant permission to recess, the Senate formally convened and adjourned multiple times. Mon, 13 Jan 2014 08:08:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 47578 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Balance Of Power At Stake In High Court Case A Supreme Court Fight For The Rights Of (Frequent) Fliers http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-fight-rights-frequent-fliers Do airline frequent fliers have any legal rights when they get into disputes over their club memberships?<p>That's the question before the U.S. Tue, 03 Dec 2013 08:18:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 45627 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net A Supreme Court Fight For The Rights Of (Frequent) Fliers Supreme Court Takes Challenge To Obamacare Contraceptive Rule http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-case-challenges-obamacare-contraceptive-provision President Obama's Affordable Care Act will be back before the Supreme Court this spring. This time, the issue is whether for-profit corporations citing religious objections may refuse to provide contraceptive services in health insurance plans offered to employees.<p>In enacting the ACA, Congress required large employers who offer health care services to provide a range of preventive care, including no-copay contraceptive services. Tue, 26 Nov 2013 22:56:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 45344 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Takes Challenge To Obamacare Contraceptive Rule Supreme Court Case Puts Public Prayer Back In The Spotlight http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-case-puts-public-prayer-back-spotlight The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Wednesday in a case questioning the use of prayer at government meetings. Wed, 06 Nov 2013 08:01:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 44201 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Case Puts Public Prayer Back In The Spotlight Love Triangle Case Puts Chemical Weapons Treaty To The Test http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/love-triangle-case-puts-chemical-weapons-treaty-test At the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, the subject for debate was the reach of the Constitution's treaty power. But the justices' questions covered subjects from sarin gas to Halloween trick-or-treating. And the <a href="http://www.npr.org/2013/11/05/243029845/a-toxic-love-triangle-heads-to-the-supreme-court">facts of the case</a><a href="http://www.npr.org/2013/11/05/243029845/a-toxic-love-triangle-heads-to-the-supreme-court"> </a>sounded more like a soap opera.<p>In 2005, when Carol Anne Bond learned that her best friend was pregnant, she was delighted. Tue, 05 Nov 2013 22:59:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 44194 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net A Toxic Love Triangle Heads To The Supreme Court http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/toxic-love-triangle-heads-supreme-court The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday hears about a love triangle, complete with attempted poisonings and 24-hour surveillance by postal inspectors. Although it sounds like an episode of <em>Law & Order</em> (with a dash of <em>Days of Our Lives</em>), the case has global implications.<p>In 2005, Carol Anne Bond was a 34-year-old Philadelphia suburbanite living with her husband of 14 years. Tue, 05 Nov 2013 07:57:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 44132 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net A Toxic Love Triangle Heads To The Supreme Court Justices To Hear Cases On Self-Incrimination, Freezing Assets http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/justices-hear-cases-self-incrimination-freezing-assets The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in two cases on Wednesday — one that focuses on the right against self-incrimination and another that looks at when prosecutors can seize defendants' assets.<p><strong>What Counts As Self-Incrimination?</strong><p>The first arguments before the court Wednesday come in <a href="http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/kansas-v-cheever/" target="_blank">a murder case</a> that tests whether a court-ordered psychiatric exam can be used to rebut a defendant's claim that he had not formed the necessary intent to kill. Wed, 16 Oct 2013 10:03:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 42997 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Justices To Hear Cases On Self-Incrimination, Freezing Assets Supreme Court Returns To Affirmative Action In Michigan Case http://publicradiodelmarva.net/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 06:48:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 42919 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Returns To Affirmative Action In Michigan Case Supreme Court Hears Another Challenge To Campaign Finance Law http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/supreme-court-hears-another-challenge-campaign-finance-law The U.S. Supreme Court returns to the campaign finance fray on Tuesday, hearing arguments in a case that could undercut most of the remaining rules that limit big money in politics.<p>It's been three years since the court's landmark <em>Citizens United</em> ruling, which let loose a new flood of campaign cash into the political process. In that 2010 case, a narrow conservative court majority upset a century-long legal understanding and declared for the first time that corporations are people entitled to spend unlimited amounts on candidate elections. Tue, 08 Oct 2013 07:02:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 42525 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Supreme Court Hears Another Challenge To Campaign Finance Law Despite Shutdown, Supreme Court Opens Its Doors For New Term http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/despite-shutdown-supreme-court-opens-its-doors-new-term When the rest of the government shuts down for a blizzard, the U.S. Supreme Court soldiers on. And so it is that this week, with the rest of the government shut down in a political deep freeze, the high court, being deemed essential, is open for business.<p>It is, after all, not just any week for the justices. It is the opening of a new term.<p>The docket this year has nothing quite as riveting as last year's same-sex marriage cases, or the challenge to President Obama's health care overhaul from the term before. Mon, 07 Oct 2013 07:06:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 42456 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Despite Shutdown, Supreme Court Opens Its Doors For New Term Citing Supreme Court, Judge Awards Benefits To Same-Sex Widow http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/citing-supreme-court-judge-awards-benefits-same-sex-widow Another barrier to recognition of same-sex marriage appears to have fallen. On Monday a federal judge ordered a law firm to pay survivor's benefits to the widow in a same-sex marriage, and on Tuesday the law firm said it was happy to comply and would not appeal.<p>The decision is the latest in a series of court rulings equalizing benefits for legally married same-sex couples in the aftermath of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling.<p>U.S. Tue, 30 Jul 2013 21:35:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 38593 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net S.C. Court Orders 'Baby Veronica' Adoption Finalized http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/sc-court-orders-baby-veronica-adoption-finalized Lawyers for the biological father of a Native American child are expected to make a last-ditch appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday, hoping to prevent the return of the child to her adoptive parents.<p>But the four-year legal saga is likely near an end.<p>Eighteen months ago the South Carolina Supreme Court ordered 2-year-old "Baby Veronica" removed from her adoptive parents, Matt and Melanie Capobianco, and turned over to her biological father, Dusten Brown. The Capobiancos had adopted the child at birth, and provided what all agreed was a good home. Wed, 24 Jul 2013 21:30:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 38264 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net S.C. Court Orders 'Baby Veronica' Adoption Finalized Scalia V. Ginsburg: Supreme Court Sparring, Put To Music http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/scalia-v-ginsburg-supreme-court-sparring-put-music On the day after the Supreme Court concluded its epic term in June, two of the supreme judicial antagonists, Justice Antonin Scalia and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, met over a mutual love: opera.<p>When it comes to constitutional interpretation, the conservative Scalia and the liberal Ginsburg are leaders of the court's two opposing wings. Wed, 10 Jul 2013 20:33:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 37468 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net Scalia V. Ginsburg: Supreme Court Sparring, Put To Music A 'Mea Culpa' http://publicradiodelmarva.net/post/mea-culpa I have always believed in correcting mistakes, especially bad ones. In <a href="http://www.npr.org/2013/07/05/198708325/whose-term-was-it-a-look-back-at-the-supreme-court" target="_blank">my wrap-up piece</a> at the end of the Supreme Court term, I quoted Northwestern University law professor John McGinnis as one of several conservative scholars highly critical of the court's decision on the Voting Rights Act. Mon, 08 Jul 2013 17:53:00 +0000 Nina Totenberg 37310 at http://publicradiodelmarva.net A 'Mea Culpa'