Category Archives: Jurisdiction

Narrowing Federal Jurisdictional Rules in Lightfoot

Last Wednesday, the Court issued an opinion in Lightfoot v. Cendant Mortgage Corp.—a case about federal jurisdiction that serves as a useful illustration of a distinctive way of using and modifying precedent: narrowingLightfoot is also interesting in raising the possibility that narrowing jurisdictional precedents might be a special undertaking that ought to be governed by distinctive principles.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Judicial Rhetoric, Jurisdiction, Supreme Court

On “Scalia’s Jurisdiction”

Over at Jotwell I have a post discussing Fred Smith’s forthcoming paper “Undemocratic Restraint.”

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisdiction, Supreme Court

Does Fisher I Establish Jurisdiction For Fisher II?

Fisher v. University of Texas, raises an important question about the constitutionality of affirmative action in university admissions, but it also poses a jurisdictional riddle. When Fisher came to the Supreme Court a few years ago, there was fairly extensive debate, including at oral argument, as to whether the Court had jurisdiction to hear the case. But in ruling in favor of the plaintiff and remanding the case, the justices said not a word about jurisdiction. Last year, I wrote a post asking whether Fisher I should be understood as a precedent on jurisdiction. Now the case is back at the Court, and UT is again pressing jurisdictional arguments. Will these renewed arguments have any sway, and should they?

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Judicial Decision-making, Jurisdiction, Procedure, Supreme Court

Barkes, Sheehan, and The Qualified-Immunity Docket

Last week, the Supreme Court summarily reversed a denial of qualified immunity in Taylor v. Barkes, a tragic case involving an alleged failure to implement adequate suicide prevention protocols in prison. As Howard has already notedBarkes follows on the heels of the Court’s recent qualified-immunity decision in San Francisco vSheehan and offers further evidence of the Court’s growing determination to protect officials from civil liability. Of special note, Barkes seems like the latest application of a new and more general claim put forward in Sheehan: erroneous denials of qualified immunity are so important as to justify error correction by the Supreme Court.

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under "Lower Courts", Jurisdiction, Procedure, Supreme Court

Could Outsourcing the Judicial Power Strengthen the Federal Judiciary?

Last week, the Supreme Court issued Wellness International Network v. Sharif, an important case on the federal judicial power, particularly in the bankruptcy context. There is a lot to say about Sharif, and, over at SCOTUSBlog, there are illuminating posts by both Ronald Mann and my colleague Dan Bussel. In this post, I’d like to set aside a lot of important issues in this area, including arguments from constitutional text, precedent and history, and instead explore a pragmatic question that’s central to the Court’s jurisprudence: is the federal judiciary threatened to the extent that Congress can outsource the federal judicial power to non-Article III judges? The answer is surprisingly unclear.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Administrative law, Articles and Letters, Jurisdiction, Procedure, Supreme Court

Talking about Standing in Zivotofsky & Robins

Over at PrawfsBlawg, I’ve posted a conversation between Steve Sachs, Chris Walker, and myself on standing issues in Zivotofsky and Robins. The conversation was prompted by Will Baude’s NYT column on the subject. If you check it out, please feel free to add your own comments!

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisdiction, Procedure, Supreme Court

The Irony of Justice Stevens’s Immunity Amendment

Justice Stevens is one of the most famous and persistent critics of the Supreme Court’s broad view of state sovereign immunity. So it was no surprise when his 2014 book Six Amendments proposed a constitutional amendment on this subject. Yet there is something quite surprising about Stevens’s proposal: if read according to its terms, it might not have any significant effect at all. Exploring this possibility turns out to be an interesting way of testing our intuitions about text and purpose in this area.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisdiction, Supreme Scholarship