In Salon, Marcy Wheeler explains why new reforms governing surveillance are not likely to solve many problems.
Russell Berman reports for The Atlantic that after a five-and-a-half month wait, the Senate is ready to confirm Loretta Lynch as U.S. Attorney General.
At the Constitutional Accountability Center's Text & History Blog, David H. Gans discusses the importance of the Equal Protection Clause in the same-sex marriage cases.
Noah Feldman writes at Bloomberg Viewthat the Supreme Court's decision on Tuesday that police cannot performa a cannot prolong a traffic stop to search for drugs with a trained canine illustrates a growing concern on the Supreme Court with police conduct.
At NPR, Nina Totenberg provides further coverage of the Supreme Court's Tuesday decision on canine drug searches during traffic stops.
Nina Totenberg of NPRexamines Young v. UPS and considers how the Supreme Court will rule in this new pregnancy discrimination case.
Scott Dolan of the Portland Press Heraldreports on a court order for a school district to pay a $75,000 award in the conclusion of “a precedent-setting case over denied access to a student bathroom” brought by a transgender student.
The failure to indict Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson for the death of Michael Brown fits an all too familiar pattern of police officers not being held accountable. The decision to not indict in Ferguson follows the acquittal a year ago of George Zimmerman, a self-appointed neighborhood watchman, for the killing of 17 year-old Trayvon Martin. Even more recently this year, two Fullerton, California police officers were found not guilty of all charges in the killing of Kelly Thomas, a homeless man who had been diagnosed with schizophrenia. Medical records show that bones in his face were broken and he choked on his own blood; the compression of his thorax by the police made it impossible for Thomas to breath and deprived his brain of oxygen.
Nor is this a new phenomena. Even with a videotape of a savage bearing, a state court jury in 1992 acquitted the four officers who beat Rodney King and a subsequent federal court jury acquitted two of them. The riots in Los Angeles, after the state court acquittals, like the unrest last week in Ferguson, reflected the enormous anger and frustration with the inability to hold police accountable.
On the Melissa Harris-Perry Show, Janai Nelson and Amy Howe consider the new Affordable Care Act challenge and how Justice Scalia could be the deciding factor.
Leslie Griffin writes at Hamilton & Griffin on Rights on how the recent opinion of Judge Cornelia Pillard of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in Priests for Life v. HHS explains why women’s equality is not a radical idea.
Reuben Guttman writes in the International Business Times that the U.S. midterm elections were all about money but had very little substance.
Chunon Bailey was pulled over by the police. The officers told him to exit his car, patted him down, and confiscated his keys, wallet, and car. The officers had not seen him break any laws, and found nothing incriminating during their search. They nevertheless questioned and handcuffed Bailey, and drove him away in the back of a police car.
Today the Supreme Court considers whether the search and seizure of Bailey was justified based on the sole fact that Bailey had recently left an apartment that the police had a warrant to search. The genesis of this issue is a case decided thirty years ago, Michigan v. Summers, where the Court ruled that police officers executing a search warrant for contraband can detain all occupants of a dwelling while searching the premises. Bailey was no longer on the premises -- the police had watched him leave the house, then followed him for nearly a mile before detaining him -- but the court below thought the rule should be extended to those who had recently left the premises. This extension is significant because the Summers rule gives police broad powers: unlike most Fourth Amendment cases, where the police must show individualized suspicion as to the specific person searched or seized, the Summers rule affords police the power to detain anyone for the duration of the search, even if the person has no apparent connection to the alleged crime and appears totally harmless. And the police can, and often do, handcuff the occupants, even when the search goes on for hours.