All Blogs

  • March 26, 2008 9:01 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Been Stuck on a Plane With Overflowing Toilets Lately?

    Well, thanks to a ruling yesterday by a trio of judges put on the federal bench by President George W. Bush, New York State's efforts to give a modicum of human dignity to airline passengers stuck in planes for hours…

  • March 20, 2008 9:00 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Reflections on Fourth Circuit Oral Argument in Church-State Case

    The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit does not inform those who argue before it of the identities of the judges on the three-judge panels who will be hearing specific cases until the very morning of the…

  • March 18, 2008 8:59 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Religious Right Using Lawsuit in Attempt to Undermine Church-State Separation

    In 2006, the Rev. Hashmel Turner, a member of the Fredericksburg City Council, took the bizarre step of suing his own City Council. Councilor Turner’s complaint? As an elected government official, he wants the special right to begin City Council…

  • March 3, 2008 8:57 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Marriage Back in Court — Another Chance for California to Make History

    Sixty years ago, the California Supreme Court courageously became the first in the country to strike down a law that prohibited interracial marriage — a full twenty years before the United States Supreme Court effectively wiped such laws off the…

  • February 26, 2008 8:55 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Supreme Court Rules on Sprint Age Discrimination Case

    The Supreme Court issued a unanimous opinion today by Justice Thomas in Sprint v. Mendelsohn, an employment discrimination case in which PFAWF had joined eleven other civil rights groups in filing an amicus curiae brief in support of the plaintiff-employee,…

  • January 29, 2008 8:53 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    The State of the Judiciary and the Bush Legacy

    Individual Rights, Access to Justice Threatened President Bush's final State of the Union address will in part be an effort to shape the public view of his presidency. But here's something he won't say: a long-lasting part of his legacy…

  • January 22, 2008 8:46 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Roe v. Wade at 35: Up For Grabs in the Next Election

    January 22, 2008 is the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision recognizing that a woman’s constitutional right to privacy includes the right to choose to end a pregnancy. Without question, Roe is one of the leading…

  • January 10, 2008 8:45 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Supreme Court Hears Argument on Indiana Voter ID Law

    Yesterday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the consolidated cases of Crawford v. Marion Cty. Election Board and Indiana Democratic Party v. Rokita, a case that could affect the fundamental right of Americans to vote and possibly even the outcome…

  • December 27, 2007 8:38 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Washington Post Editorial Gets It Wrong On Nominees

    An editorial in today's Washington Post calls on the Senate to act quickly on President Bush's nominees to the Fourth Circuit. But as PFAW Legal Director Judith E. Schaeffer pointed out in a Letter to the Editor, the Post has…

  • December 13, 2007 8:44 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    DOJ Supports Restrictive Voter ID Law

    This week, the Bush Department of Justice filed an amicus curiae brief in the Supreme Court in the Indiana voter ID case (Crawford v. Marion Cty. Election Board), supporting the state's imposition of the most restrictive voter ID barriers in…

  • December 5, 2007 8:42 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Supreme Court Hears Detainee Case

    The Supreme Court today heard oral argument in Boumediene v. Bush, an important separation of powers case in which detainees at Guantanamo are challenging the constitutionality of the Military Commissions Act, which prohibits them from challenging the legality of their…

  • December 4, 2007 8:41 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Supreme Court Hears Employment Discrimination Case

    On Monday, December 3, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Sprint v. Mendelsohn, an employment discrimination case brought by Ellen Mendelsohn, a former Sprint employee who believes that she was unlawfully selected for a company-wide reduction in force because…

  • November 25, 2007 8:35 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Supreme Court to Hear Controversial Gun Control Law Case

    District of Columbia v. Heller, No. 07-290 On November 20, the Supreme Court agreed to hear a highly controversial case that, whichever way it is decided, is likely to produce a landmark ruling on the issue of gun control and…

  • November 20, 2007 8:34 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Supreme Court to Hear Arguments on Indiana Voter ID in January

    Today, the Supreme Court set oral argument in the Indiana voter ID case for 10 a.m. on Wednesday, January 9, only 12 days after briefing is completed in this case. PFAWF has joined with many other civil rights groups, academics,…

  • November 14, 2007 8:33 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    PFAWF Files Amicus Brief in Indiana Voter ID Case

    As PFAWF has previously noted on Court Watch, the Supreme Court this term will be hearing an important case challenging the constitutionality of Indiana's restrictive voter ID law, which unnecessarily burdens the rights of eligible voters, particularly minorities, the elderly,…

  • November 6, 2007 8:37 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Today at the Supreme Court: Federal Express v. Holowecki

    The Supreme Court heard oral argument today in Federal Express v. Holowecki, an employment discrimination case in which the employee's access to justice through the courts is at stake, as we have previously described. Under the Age Discrimination in Employment…

  • November 5, 2007 6:22 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Another Courthouse Door Closed to Religious Liberty Plaintiffs

    One of the Supreme Court's disturbing 5-4 decisions last term — Hein v. Freedom From Religion Foundation — is already coming home to roost in the lower courts. On October 30, 2007, relying on Justice Alito's purality decision in Hein,…

  • October 24, 2007 6:15 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Senate Confirms Nominee Unfit for Federal Bench

    In response to today’s Senate vote to confirm Leslie Southwick to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, People For the American Way Legal Director Judith E. Schaeffer released the following statement: “Following the 2006 election, President…

  • October 22, 2007 6:21 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    PFAWF Files Supreme Court Amicus Brief In Employment Discrimination Case

    On October 19, 2007, PFAWF joined 11 other civil rights groups in filing an amicus curiae brief in Sprint v. Mendelsohn, an employment discrimination case pending in the Supreme Court and one of the cases that we highlighted in our…

  • October 17, 2007 6:18 pm | By Judith Schaeffer

    Countering Time Magazine on the Court’s Relevance to Americans

    TIME magazine’s cover story this week told Americans they don't need to care about the Supreme Court because its decisions don’t make a difference in most people’s lives. That premise is just wrong, as the letter we submitted to TIME…