|Welcome to the June 29 edition of Bold Justice, Ballotpedia’s newsletter about the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) and other judicial happenings around the U.S. Need something to read while you’re barbequing on July 4? Check us out on Twitter or subscribe to the Daily Brew.|
The Supreme Court has finished hearing arguments for the 2019-2020 term. The court agreed to hear arguments in 74 cases, but heard arguments in only 61 cases due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Thirteen cases have not been scheduled for argument. Of those, 12 are set to be rescheduled for the October 2020-21 term. The cases were originally scheduled for oral argument in March and April, but those sessions were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The remaining unscheduled case is Sharp v. Murphy. SCOTUS never scheduled arguments for Sharp v. Murphy in the current term. Instead, the justices agreed to hear another case, McGirt v. Oklahoma, which concerns the same legal issues. Oral arguments for McGirt took place on May 11 and a decision is pending.
SCOTUS has issued two opinions since our June 22 issue. The court has issued rulings in 47 cases so far this term.
Click the links below to read more about the specific cases SCOTUS ruled on since June 22:
How are opinions released?
The court announces opinions on the homepage of its website, supremecourt.gov, and on the Opinions of the Court – 2019 page. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the court has been releasing opinions online.
SCOTUS does not announce in advance which cases will be decided on a given day or how many opinions will be released. Opinions are released in order of reverse seniority of the authoring justice in 10-minute intervals.
For more information on how SCOTUS releases orders and opinions, click here.
Upcoming SCOTUS dates
Here are the court’s upcoming dates of interest:
The U.S. Supreme Court usually finishes releasing all opinions for the term by the end of June. This year might be different. When was the last time SCOTUS issued opinions into July?
The Senate has confirmed one new nominee since our June 22 issue.
Since January 2017, the Senate has confirmed 200 of President Trump’s judicial nominees—143 district court judges, 53 appeals court judges, two Court of International Trade judges, and two Supreme Court justices.
There are two upcoming Circuit Court vacancies. Andrew Brasher was already confirmed to succeed Judge Ed Carnes on the 11th Circuit. Carnes is expected to assume senior status on June 30. Justin Walker was confirmed to succeed Judge Thomas Griffith on the D.C. Circuit. Griffith is expected to retire on September 1.
President Trump has not announced any new Article III nominees since our June 22 edition.
The president has announced 262 Article III judicial nominations since taking office January 20, 2017. The president named 69 judicial nominees in 2017, 92 in 2018, and 77 in 2019. For more information on the president’s judicial nominees, click here.
The federal judiciary currently has 80 vacancies. As of publication, there were 50 pending nominations.
According to the Administrative Office of U.S. Courts, an additional four judges have announced their intention to leave active judicial status during Trump’s first term.
For more information on judicial vacancies during Trump’s first term, click here.
The Senate Judiciary Committee has not reported any new nominees out of committee since our June 22 edition.
Do you love judicial nomination, confirmation, and vacancy information? We figured you might. Our monthly Federal Vacancy Count, published at the start of each month, monitors all the faces and places moving in, moving out, and moving on in the federal judiciary. Click here for our most current count.
Need a daily fix of judicial nomination, confirmation, and vacancy information? Click here for continuing updates on the status of all federal judicial nominees.
Or, if you prefer, we also maintain a list of individuals President Trump has nominated.
We’ll be back on July 13 with a new edition of Bold Justice.