SCOTUS hears final arguments in its January sitting

Image of the front of the United States Supreme Court building.

On Tuesday, January 19, 2021, the Supreme Court of the United States heard arguments in three cases to round out the January sitting of the court’s 2020-2021 term. The court heard oral arguments via teleconference and provided live audio of the arguments. SCOTUS began hearing arguments remotely during its October sitting of the current term, a decision made in accordance with public health guidance in response to COVID-19.

FCC v. Prometheus Radio Project (Consolidated with National Association of Broadcasters v. Prometheus Radio Project)

The consolidated cases originated from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit and were granted review by SCOTUS on October 2, 2020. They concern how courts should review the actions taken by administrative agencies. 

According to Ballotpedia’s Administrative State Project’s coverage of the case, a decision in favor of either the FCC or Prometheus might clarify the scope of judicial review and the arbitrary-or-capricious test that comes from the Administrative Procedure Act.

BP P.L.C. v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore

This case concerns a procedural question—the authority of a court of appeals to review issues in removal orders. The case originated from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit and was granted review by SCOTUS on October 2, 2020. Justice Samuel Alito recused himself from the case.

The Supreme Court’s February argument sitting will begin on February 22, 2021. The court is scheduled to hear arguments in five cases for a total of four hours of oral argument.

As of January 19, 2021, the court had agreed to hear 60 cases during its 2020-2021 term and had issued opinions in 11 cases. 

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