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David Friedman

The Supreme Court, and the importance of keeping the lower courts in line

Justices Alito and Scalia, however, are right that there are only so many of these messages to go around. There are ultimately many cases like Tolan, and the Supreme Court does not have the time to correct them all. This highlights a point that may be lost in a column that focuses on the Supreme Court: The vast majority of cases—even important cases—do not reach the Court.

Supreme Court to clarify limits on executing the mentally disabled

From a broader perspective, Florida contends that it is simply inappropriate to defer to the private medical community for a constitutional judgment of such importance. If such a delegation of authority were made to clinicians, Florida argues it would create perverse incentives. After all, Florida’s goal is to prevent eligible death row inmates from evading execution, while many in the psychiatric community may seek just the opposite.

New Challenges to Campaign Finance Regulation

On Oct. 8, 2013, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case of McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission. Though perhaps not as consequential as some of the other cases before the Court this term, McCutcheon concerns the always-controversial issue of campaign finance. In particular, it involves a challenge to the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act’s…
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