In the U.S. Supreme Court this week

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

The U.S. Supreme Court at its Conference on Friday considered the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision striking down the Arizona Tea-Publican legislature's 20-week abortion restrictions, Horne v. Isaacson (13-402).This case was not among the eight cases granted immediately after the Conference on Friday. Additional orders from the January 10 Conference are due on Monday morning at 9:30 a.m. EST.

Monday is also the first day of the January sitting.On Monday the Court will hear oral arguments in National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning, the challenge to the constitutionality of the president’s recess appointments to the NLRB. The patrician prevaricator for the plutocracy, George Will, clutches his pearls and whines mightily about the president's recess appointments, while ignoring the unprecedented partisan obstruction of the president's appointments by the Tea Party tyranny of the minority in A defining moment for the Court, while the New York Times editorializes today, correctly, Protect the President’s Appointments. That's a big "screw you George Will."

On both Tuesday and Wednesday one or more opinions in argued cases are expected to be announced. The campaign finance case of McCutcheon v. FEC heard in October? It's possible.

The Arizona Capitol Times (subscription required) has a good summary of what to expect should the Court grant Horne v. Isaacson (13-402) on Monday. U.S. Supreme Court considers accepting Arizona abortion case:

Arizona is at the center of the abortion debate as the U.S. Supreme Court decides whether to consider a challenge to a 2012 law that strikes at the heart of the 40-year-old landmark case, Roe v. Wade.

The court’s acceptance of the case would bring dread to abortion rights advocates and be a good omen for the pro-life movement, both of which view the case as a vehicle for major change.

“That signals nothing but trouble for abortion rights,” said Elizabeth Nash, a policy analyst for the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-choice research group. “There is only one reason to take a case that has been struck down and that is to uphold it.”

Arizona is challenging the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision in May that found the law, a ban on abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, unconstitutional. The court is going behind closed doors on Jan. 10 to consider whether to take up the case and will likely make its decision known by Jan. 13. Only four of the nine justices have to approve accepting certiorari.

Former Arizona Right to Life President John Jakubczyk said certiorari would mean the court will be focusing on the right of the unborn baby for the first time, rather than on balancing the rights of the mother and the state.

The high court’s rejection of the case would effectively end any hopes of cutting into Roe v. Wade, even as states, including Arizona, have placed a host of significant restrictions on abortion in recent years. They include allowing only doctors to perform abortions, informed consent laws and waiting periods.

“If they don’t take it, that just keeps us battling on various fronts within the entire spectrum of the debate,” Jakubczyk said.

Nash said a rejection of the case wouldn’t exactly bring joy to the abortion rights side because Arizona’s law has a difference from other states with the same ban. Arizona determines gestational age from the first day of the last menstrual period while other states determine it from the estimated point of fertilization, a difference of about two weeks. Nash contends Arizona’s ban is actually at 18 weeks.

“I’m not entirely convinced we’d be out of the woods on this issue,” Nash said.

Arizona in 2012 passed HB2036, sponsored by Rep. Kimberly Yee, a Phoenix Republican who has since joined the Senate.

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