Tick, Tick, Tick…: The Supreme Court Readies an Explosive Docket for 2022, by Jonathan Turley

The Supreme Court has a big docket this year, starting with the Biden administration’s mandates. From Jonathan Turley at jonathanturley.org:

Below is my column in the Hill on upcoming year for the Supreme Court. The Court’s docket is likely to put the institution at ground zero of a heated election year. Major decisions on abortion and gun rights are expected by June 2022. Even with Chief Justice John Roberts denouncing attempts at “inappropriate political influence” on the Court, the threats of Court packing and other measures are likely to become even more shrill as these decisions rollout in the new year.

Here is the column:

The late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg once observed that “it’s hard not to have a big year at the Supreme Court.” However, there are some years that are bigger than others. That’s what 2022 is likely to be.

The court has accepted a series of transformative cases with few available exit ramps. It recently added to that list.

In other words, it is likely to issue historic rulings on abortion, gun rights and an assortment of other issues.

The fact that the Supreme Court is going to hand down such decisions in a major election year is also noteworthy. The court tends to be more conservative in the selection of cases before major elections, but 2022 will put the court at ground zero in one of the most heated elections in history.

For those calling to pack the court to ensure a liberal majority, the already furious commentary is likely to reach near hysteria if the conservative majority rules as expected in some of these cases in the first half of 2022.

Here’s just a partial list of what is coming in the new year:

Abortion

The country is awaiting a decision by June in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. At issue is whether Mississippi can impose a 15-week limit on abortions. That is earlier than previously allowed by the court, but the United States is one of only seven among the world’s 198 countries to allow abortions after 20 weeks. While the court could simply overturn Roe v. Wade and return the area to the states, it is more likely that the court will increase the authority of the states while recognizing constitutional protections for such reproductive rights. That could result in a major reframing of “previability” cases.

After Dobbs was accepted, advocates sought to enjoin a Texas law that banned abortion after just six weeks. The court ruled 5-4 to allow the Texas law to be enforced. The Biden administration and other litigants then forced a reconsideration of that decision. The court — as expected — allowed the appeal to go forward for some of the litigants in the lower court but again refused to enjoin the law. To make matters worse, it declared the Biden administration’s appeal to be “improvidently granted.”

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