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Citizen's Guide to the Supreme Court

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A Remand By Any Other Name Would Smell as Sweet

This week's episode is all about REMANDS; including what they are, how they work, how a lower judge should consider a remanded case, etc. Brett and Nazim discuss Upper Skagit Indian Tribe v. Lungren (does sovereign immunity apply to in rem actions) and Byrd v. U.S. (do persons unnamed on a rental agreement have privacy rights in a rental car) and how those remands speak to the Court's control over lower appellate judges. Law starts from the beginning, as you get to hear Nazim's reaction in...


How Big of a Deal is This?

This week's episode covers three big questions. (1) How big of a deal is the decision in Husted v. A. Phillip Randolph Instit.(can Ohio purge old voter rolls, (2) How big of a deal is the decision in McCoy v. Louisiana (can a criminal attorney admit guilt over a defendant's objection), and (3) What's a big deal when it comes to the Supreme Court (you know, like what is a "big deal" exactly??) Nazim's metaphor game is particularly strong in this one btw. Law starts at (07:14).


The Masterpiece Cakes Decision is Terrible

This week's episode covers the recent decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, a case which balanced the value of anti-discrimination statutes against the religious protections of the First Amendment to figure a compromise that likely everyone hates. Law starts at (04:37)


Arbitration Beats Worker's Rights

This week's episode covers the recent decision in Epic Systems v. Lewis, which can be more aptly stated as Overly Power Arbitration Act v. Sensible Worker's Rights Requests. Brett and Nazim break down the basis for the decision, debate judicial activism, and talk about why Weezer sucks. Law starts at (05:14).


New Jersey Beats the Federal Government

This week's episode covers the improbable case of Christie v. NCAA, where New Jersey's second bite at legalizing State gambling actually worked, and now Federal Gambling laws are unconstitutional. Brett and Naziim celebrate this brand new world by setting odds for one-on-one fights between Supreme Court Justices. Law starts at (04:15), but it takes a while to get focused.


Trump and the Travel Ban

Brett and Nazim celebrate their 200th episode (!!!) the only way they know how, by talking about food for way too long, going on a weird tangent about the Mueller investigation that dovetails into the shady side of corporate law, and finally landing on Trump v. Hawaii, the travel ban case that asks the Supreme Court to gauge how prejudiced the President is allowed to be before we do anything about it. Law starts at (11:50).


Judge Dredd

This week's episode covers judges, and more specifically judicial mistakes currently before the Supreme Court. Brett and Nazim discuss Rosales-Mireles v. U.S, which basically covers how the Court should approach math problems, and Dalmazzi v. U.S., which discusses the current applicability of Civil War military appointment statutes. Law starts at (04:30).


Interesting Things the Week After 4/20

This week's episode covers oral arguments and recent decisions with varying degrees of stakes. Brett and Nazim discuss Abbott v. Perez (which might decide the fate of modern democracy) Jesner v. Arab Bank PLC (which may facilitate terrorism), SAS Institute v. Matal (which deals with paperwork), and Trump v. Hawaii (which has something to do with the President). Law starts at (04:18).


Decisions in Microsoft and Dimaya

This week's episode covers two recent decisions by the Court, including Microsoft v. U.S. (where the Court determined the dispute was moot after passage of the CLOUD Act), and Dimaya v. Sessions (where the Court invalidated the Immigrant Removal Act on grounds of vagueness under the Due Process Clause). Law starts at (08:48), but you'd be missing some pretty dope NASA talk.


How Punk Rock Is It To Sue the Government?

Maybe a 6 out of 10? Depends on how you feel about lawsuits destined to fail, since this week we are covering sovereign immunity and the inherently futility of trying to hold the government accountable for bad actions. Brett and Nazim discuss the cases of Kisela v. Hughes (do police get qualified immunity for shooting people?) and Lozman v. City of Riviera Beach (can the government stop your free speech rights by arresting you if you kind of deserve to be arrested). Law starts at (05:50).


Double Double Toil & Trouble

This week's episode covers double jeopardy, a legal concept that should be easy, but technical legal rules have made complicated and kind of boring. To that end(!!), Brett and Nazim spice up the case of Currier v. Virginia, where the Court has to determine whether a severed charge can be tried following an acquittal. Law starts at (07:09), but before them Nazim talks about how he thinks he could be the Bachelor, sooooooooo skip at your own peril.


Family Court War Stories

This week's episode tackles the wild and unpredictable world of Family Court, where everyone is nuts and there are no rules. Brett and Nazim cover the case of Sveen v. Melin, where the Court is asked whether a revocation upon divorce statute automatically changes a life insurance beneficiary retroactively, or if people have to still do it themselves. Law starts at (06:00).


A Heaping Buffet of Precedent Talk

This week's episode, which was intended to a brief discussion on Hughes v. U.S. to compensate for Brett's lost voice, quickly turned into a more substantive discussion on plurality opinions, sentencing guidelines and actual buffets. So the title isn't really a joke, cuz like the last ten minutes is legit all about buffets. The law starts at (03:36), but if you hate food talk, feel free to bail around the time Brett talks about eating oysters at the Chinese buffet.


The Fact Act Gets Wacked??

First off, this week's episode covers the case of National Institute of Family and Life Advocate v. Becerra, which decides whether or not a California Statute (the FACT Act) that requires specific disclosures of Reproductive Family Centers violates the First Amendment. Brett and Nazim have a brief crash course on general abortion rights under the Constitution and then cover why the statute may end up a 1-1 tie. Secondly, I think we did a really good job with the title of the podcast this...


Gray Clouds and Silver Linings

This week is a total bummer, as Brett and Nazim cover two cases, Microsoft Corp. v. U.S. (dealing with the U.S. jurisdiction to seize digital assets overseas) and Janus v. AFSCME, Council 31 (aka the Unions)(dealing paying union dues when you're not the union), that depending on how you feel about privacy or organized labor could be a real downer. Brett and Nazim look on the bright side of both cases, by either arguing why the good side should win or why it won't be a bad thing if they...


Decisions in Jennings and Patchak

We're live from Brett's living room today, as Brett and Nazim go old school to explain why immigrants don't have bail hearings (Jennings v. Rodriguez), why Congress can decide cases for the Courts (Patchak v. Zinke), and why podcasters shouldn't eat while recording. Law starts at (03:10).


Decisions in Class, Somers, and Murphy

This week's episode is covers a slew of recent decisions dealing with guilty pleas (Class v. U.S.), statutory interpretation (Digital Realty Trust v. Somers), and math (Murphy v. Smith). Brett and Nazim discuss each decision and focus on whether or not the facts of the case matter when dealing with bad statutes. Law starts at (03:22).


The One SCOTUS Case That May Cost You Money

That's right folks!! The Supreme Court is coming after your precious Amazon purchases, as the case of South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc. will decide whether adding State taxes to online purchases violates the Dormant Commerce Clause. Brett and Nazim discuss Federalism and the DCC at length, brag about living in a State that will be unaffected by the whole ordeal, and sing a weird amount. Law starts at (04:17).


It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

This week Brett and Nazim are "peak Brett and Nazim", as the Brett crows about the Eagles winning the Super Bowl and Nazim discusses how to improve voting districts. In addition to covering the recent Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision which declared the district maps unconstitutional, the case of Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky is also discussed, which covers whether statutes banning political apparel at voting stations violate the First Amendment. The law technically starts at...


Thomas Hates House Parties (and Overturning Death Penalty Convictions)

This week's episode welcomes back Nazim by covering recent decisions issued by the Court. It's a banner week for Clarence Thomas, as in one case he ruins a house party (D.C. v. Wesby), and the other involves he discounts an incredibly racist juror affidavit (Tharpe v Sellers). Law starts at (07:20).