Policy Area

In a very brief, unauthored opinion the Supreme Court denied qualified immunity in Taylor v. Riojas to a number of correctional officers who confined Trent Taylor to a “pair of shockingly unsanitary cells” for six days. The Court didn’t hear oral argument in this case, and Justice Barrett didn’t participate in it.

In the last decade the Supreme Court has repeatedly overturned lower court refusals to grant police officers qualified immunity....

Illinois Summer Youth Employment Program

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a massive increase in unemployment throughout the United States. Many youth transitioning into the workforce struggled to find summer employment. Youth with disabilities transitioning into the workforce were hit especially hard by the economic downturn brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, the unemployment rate among youth with disabilities ages 16-19 reached 31.2% in July, compared to the 18.8% unemployment rate of all youth ages 16-19, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office...

In a 5-3 decision the U.S. Supreme Court disallowed a lower court decision to go into effect which would have allowed absentee ballots to be counted if they were received as late as November 9, as long as they were postmarked on or before election day. As a result, Wisconsin absentee ballots must be...

The Supreme Court has frozen a district court order that lifted Alabama’s ban on curbside voting. As a result, curbside voting must discontinue in Alabama.

Alabama law is silent on curbside voting. A number of Alabama counties were offering it due to COVID-19. Alabama’s Secretary of State, John Merrill, has taken the position that curbside voting violates state law and has banned it. A federal district court...

In a 4-4 decision the U.S. Supreme Court allowed a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision that requires ballots received up to three days after the election to be counted to stand. Ballots clearly postmarked after 8 PM on election night will not be counted if they arrive after 5 PM on November 6.

Only if a ballot is clearly postmarked after 8 PM on election night will it not be counted if it arrives by 5 PM on November...

On November 30, one month before the Secretary of Commerce is supposed to report to the President the results of the census, the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in New York v. Trump. In this case, a three-judge panel ruled that the Secretary of Commerce may not provide the President with a census count that excludes undocumented persons. The state-by-state population breakdown the Secretary of...

The issue in Lange v. California is whether a police officer may enter a person’s house without a warrant when the officer has probable cause to believe he or she has committed a misdemeanor.

Right before Arthur Gregory Lange turned into his driveway and after following him for a while, Officer Weikert turned on his lights to pull him over for playing music loudly and unnecessarily beeping his horn right. Lange didn’t pull over. He later claimed to not notice...

The Supreme Court has frozen in place a district court order requiring the Census Bureau to continue counting people through October 31. As a result, the Census Bureau may immediately stop the count.  

The Census Bureau lost 47 dates of field operations (counting people) due to COVID-19 between March and May. In April it announced it would extend field operations until October 31. In August it changed the ending date of field operations to September 30...

Justice Kagan denied an emergency petition asking the Supreme Court to freeze a district court decision allowing counties to send mail ballots to all registered voters. Forty-five of Montana’s 56 counties have opted to conduct the general election by mail ballot. Following this ruling these counties will be able to do so; in person voting also will be available in all Montana counties.

Montana law states that “a...

In the Supreme Court’s first non-COVID-19 related emergency case regarding a state election requirement relevant to the 2020 presidential election, Justice Breyer refused to overturn a state court decision which allows Maine to use ranked-choice voting.

Maine statute describes ranked-choice voting as a “method of casting and tabulating votes in which voters rank candidates in order of preference, tabulation proceeds in...

Pages