Nina Totenberg http://www.kplu.org en Rare Unanimity In Supreme Court Term, With Plenty Of Fireworks http://www.kplu.org/post/rare-unanimity-supreme-court-term-plenty-fireworks The nation greets the coming of July each year with fireworks on the National Mall and, days earlier, explosive decisions at the U.S. Supreme Court.<p>While the Mall fireworks dissipate within moments, the court's decisions will have repercussions for decades. Indeed, no sooner was the ink dry on this term's contraception decision than the court's three female justices accused their male colleagues of reneging.<p>"Those who are bound by our decisions usually believe they can take us at our word," wrote Justice Sonia Sotomayor for herself and Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan. Mon, 07 Jul 2014 16:30:23 +0000 Nina Totenberg 17591 at http://www.kplu.org Rare Unanimity In Supreme Court Term, With Plenty Of Fireworks Supreme Court Rules Against Gun 'Straw Purchases' http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-rules-against-gun-straw-purchases The U.S. Supreme Court delivered a major victory to gun control advocates on Monday. Mon, 16 Jun 2014 23:13:36 +0000 Nina Totenberg 17187 at http://www.kplu.org Supreme Court: Inherited IRAs Not Protected From Bankruptcy http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-inhertied-iras-not-protected-bankruptcy The Supreme Court has ruled that individual retirement accounts (IRAs) that Americans inherit are not protected in bankruptcy proceedings.<p>When Heidi Heffron-Clark declared bankruptcy in October 2010, she and her husband claimed the IRA she inherited from her mother — then worth $300,000 — qualified as "retirement funds," meaning the couple could not be required to use it to pay debts they owed creditors.<p>But an inherited IRA differs in big ways from the type of IRA someone builds over the course of a working lifetime.<p>Heffron-Clark, now 35, never contributed to the IRA; she had already Thu, 12 Jun 2014 23:55:58 +0000 Nina Totenberg & Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza 17134 at http://www.kplu.org POM Wonderful Wins A Round In Food Fight With Coca-Cola http://www.kplu.org/post/pom-wonderful-wins-round-food-fight-coca-cola A food fight at the U.S. Supreme Court ended in a unanimous decision on Thursday.<p>The justices ruled that POM Wonderful can go forward with a lawsuit alleging Coca-Cola Co. tricked consumers and stole business from POM with false and misleading juice labels.<p>The case centers on a product aimed at health-conscious consumers: pomegranate-blueberry juice.<p>One version is made by POM Wonderful, a grower of pomegranates; the other, produced by Coca-Cola's Minute Maid division, says in large print that it is pomegranate-blueberry juice, too. The Coca-Cola product is almost five times cheaper. Thu, 12 Jun 2014 22:48:19 +0000 Nina Totenberg 17132 at http://www.kplu.org POM Wonderful Wins A Round In Food Fight With Coca-Cola Supreme Court Rules Against Homeowners In Superfund Case http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-rules-against-homeowners-superfund-case The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that a federal law seeking to improve accountability for environmental spills and pollution can be circumvented by certain kinds of state laws.<p>The federal Superfund law supersedes state statutes of limitations. Instead the federal law dictates that lawsuits alleging environmental injury need only be filed when individuals either first learn or should have learned that they have been harmed. Mon, 09 Jun 2014 22:50:51 +0000 Nina Totenberg & Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza 17051 at http://www.kplu.org Supreme Court: At 21, Some Children Must Start Visa Process Over http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-21-some-children-must-start-visa-process-over A fractured U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that when parents wait years to win legal entry into the United States, their children may have to go to the back of the line when they turn 21. The court's decision came on a 5-to-4 vote, with the majority split into two camps.<p>Under the Immigration Act, citizens and lawful permanent residents may sponsor family members petitions' for visas and green cards. In most cases, those immigrating with a minor child stand in line with their children. Mon, 09 Jun 2014 21:30:54 +0000 Nina Totenberg 17049 at http://www.kplu.org Supreme Court: Case Involved Romantic Jealousy, Not Chemical Weapons http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-case-involved-romantic-jealousy-not-chemical-weapons The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday dodged a major constitutional test of the Constitution's treaty power. Conservative activists had seen the case as a chance to limit the power of the president and Congress to make and enforce treaties. Instead, the case boiled down to, in Chief Justice John Roberts' words, "an act of revenge born of romantic jealousy."<p>The Chemical Weapons Convention of 1993, adopted by the United States and 189 other nations, bars the development, use and storage of chemical weapons. Tue, 03 Jun 2014 17:11:07 +0000 Nina Totenberg 16910 at http://www.kplu.org Supreme Court Gives Police New Power To Rely On Anonymous Tips http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-gives-police-new-power-rely-anonymous-tips The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that police can stop and search a driver based solely on an anonymous 911 tip.<p>The 5-4 decision split the court's two most conservative justices, with Justice Clarence Thomas writing for the majority and Justice Antonin Scalia penning the dissent.<p>In August 2008, an anonymous 911 caller in California phoned in a report that a pickup truck had run her off the road. Wed, 23 Apr 2014 04:23:52 +0000 Nina Totenberg & Katie Barlow 16218 at http://www.kplu.org Supreme Court Case Could Change How You Watch TV http://www.kplu.org/post/supreme-court-case-could-change-how-you-watch-tv Bruce Springsteen may have been ahead of his times with his song "57 Channels (And Nothin' On)," released in 1992. These days there are hundreds of channels, and whether you like it or not, you get most of them in your basic cable package. Tue, 22 Apr 2014 16:22:19 +0000 Nina Totenberg 16192 at http://www.kplu.org Supreme Court Case Could Change How You Watch TV Group Goes Online To Find Affirmative Action Plaintiffs http://www.kplu.org/post/group-goes-online-find-affirmative-action-plaintiffs A group opposed to affirmative action in higher education is taking the unprecedented step of looking for plaintiffs online.<p>The Project on Fair Representation is advertising for college applicants willing to challenge Harvard University, the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the University of Wisconsin, Madison.<p>When the Supreme Court issued a ruling last spring that made affirmative action programs more legally difficult to sustain, project director Edward Blum promised that more "costly and polarizing litigation" would soon be filed against university affirmative action pro Mon, 07 Apr 2014 23:39:57 +0000 Nina Totenberg 15774 at http://www.kplu.org High Court Considers Definition Of Domestic Violence In Gun Case http://www.kplu.org/post/high-court-considers-definition-domestic-violence-gun-case Law enforcement, domestic violence organizations and gun control groups won an important victory in the U.S. Thu, 27 Mar 2014 14:11:43 +0000 Nina Totenberg 15375 at http://www.kplu.org Justices Divide By Gender In Hobby Lobby Contraception Case http://www.kplu.org/post/justices-divide-gender-hobby-lobby-contraception-case There was a clear difference of opinion between male and female justices at the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday. The issue was whether for-profit corporations, citing religious objections, may refuse to include contraception coverage in the basic health plan now mandated under the Affordable Care Act.<p>The female justices were clearly supportive of the contraception mandate, while a majority of the male justices were more skeptical.<p>The lead challenger in the case is the Hobby Lobby corporation, a chain of 500 arts and crafts stores that has 13,000 employees. Wed, 26 Mar 2014 01:28:07 +0000 Nina Totenberg 15304 at http://www.kplu.org Hobby Lobby Contraceptive Case Goes Before Supreme Court http://www.kplu.org/post/hobby-lobby-contraceptive-case-goes-supreme-court The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday in the latest challenge to the Obama health care overhaul.<p>This time the issue is whether for-profit corporations, citing religious objections, may refuse to provide some, or potentially all, contraceptive services in health plans offered to employees. It is a case that touches lots of hot-button issues.<p>In enacting the ACA, Congress required large employers to provide basic preventive care for employees. Tue, 25 Mar 2014 13:04:01 +0000 Nina Totenberg 15268 at http://www.kplu.org Hobby Lobby Contraceptive Case Goes Before Supreme Court Lawrence Walsh: His Judgment Came Not From Confidence But From Insecurity http://www.kplu.org/post/lawrence-walsh-his-judgment-came-not-confidence-insecurity <em>In 2003 the American Bar Association published Lawrence Walsh's autobiography, </em><a href="http://books.google.com/books/about/The_Gift_of_Insecurity.html?id=Ufg6AQAAIAAJ">The Gift of Insecurity; A Lawyer's Life</a><em>. Walsh </em><a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/03/20/291999738/lawrence-walsh-who-investigated-iran-contra-scandal-dies-at-102">died Wednesday at age 102</a><em>. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 21:57:25 +0000 Nina Totenberg 15107 at http://www.kplu.org Lawrence Walsh: His Judgment Came Not From Confidence But From Insecurity Lawrence Walsh, Who Investigated Iran-Contra Scandal, Dies At 102 http://www.kplu.org/post/lawrence-walsh-who-investigated-iran-contra-scandal-dies-102 Lawrence Walsh, the special prosecutor who investigated charges of wrongdoing and criminality by top Reagan administration officials in the Iran-Contra scandal, has died.<p>He was 102.<p>The Iran-Contra affair merged two secret operations. On President Reagan's orders, his administration provided weapons to rebels opposed to the leftist government in Nicaragua. At the time, Congress had barred the Pentagon and CIA from giving the aid to the so-called Contras. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 21:39:30 +0000 Nina Totenberg 15101 at http://www.kplu.org Lawrence Walsh, Who Investigated Iran-Contra Scandal, Dies At 102