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Big Week at the Supreme Court

 

Quite a few significant Supreme Court opinions were announced this week, including two of the biggest cases from this term: same-sex marriage and Obamacare.

Read on for more information on each case from this week and links to the Court’s opinion.

 

 

Same-sex marriage – Obergefell v. Hodges
Issues:
1) Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to license a marriage between two people of the same sex?
2) Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state?

Holding:
The Court ruled that states cannot ban same-sex marriage, and concluded the majority opinion with the following paragraph:

No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.

Obamacare – King v. Burwell
Issue:
Whether the Internal Revenue Service may permissibly promulgate regulations to extend tax-credit subsidies to coverage purchased through exchanges established by the federal government under Section 1321 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Holding:
The Court held that the tax credits are available to individuals living in states with their own health care exchanges as well as individuals living in the 34 states that have a federal exchange.

Other cases from this week

  • City of Los Angeles v. Patel
    Constitutionality of a Los Angeles Municipal Code ordinance which requires hotel operators to keep specific information about guests for 90 days and make it available to LAPD officers on demand.
  • Kingsley v. Hendrickson
    Whether proving an excessive force claim requires a pretrial detainee to show that officers are subjectively aware that their use of force was unreasonable.

For full coverage of these decisions and others, check out these websites:

SCOTUSblog
The SCOTUSblog covers all aspects of the Supreme Court and provides both commentary and resources related to the Court including opinions, briefs, select petitions for certiorari, and news coverage of every merits case before the Court.

Oyez
This website offers a variety of resources devoted to the Supreme Court including opinions, recordings of oral arguments, information about the individual justices, and more.

Racheal White Hawk ’16 and Glennas’ba Augborne ’16 Honored for Exemplary Student Research

The Ross-Blakley Law Library at the Sandra O’Connor College of Law is pleased to announce the 2015 recipients of The Ross-Blakley Law Library Award for Exemplary Student Research. 

Racheal White Hawk is the first place award recipient for her paper, A New Formula for Tribal Internet Gaming and Glennas’ba Augborne earned second-place honors for The HEARTH Act: Implementing UN Indigenous Rights Norms to Reconcile the Limitations of Tribal Environmental Sovereignty. Their papers demonstrate sophistication and originality in the use of research materials, exceptional innovation in research strategy, and skillful synthesis of research results into a comprehensive scholarly analysis.

A review panel comprised of librarians Victoria Trotta and Beth DiFelice and Clinical Professor Kimberly Holst selected the winners from the very competitive entries.

In addition to receiving a monetary award, the winners are also invited to publish their papers in the Law Library’s digital scholarship repository and to feature their papers in the Law Library Display Case.

Congratulations to our 2015 Winners!

Reminder: Ross-Blakley Law Library Award for Exemplary Student Research

Do you want to win $500?  How about $250?  Would you like to have your work displayed in the Faculty Publications Display Case?  How about all the pats on the back you will get from family and friends if you win this prestigious award?  You better get to work!  The deadline to enter the annual Ross-Blakley Law Library Award for Exemplary Student Research is April 1st.

The purpose of the award is to encourage students to focus on practical skills and to refine their research skills beyond ordinary proficiency to their personal best.  The award also serves as a means to showcase extraordinary student research.

Two award recipients will be selected.  The first place winner will receive $500.00 and a Certificate of Recognition.  The second place winner will receive  $250.00 and a Certificate of Recognition. Winners will be invited to publish their paper in the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law Faculty Scholarship Repository and winners are further invited to showcase their writing in the Faculty Scholarship Display case located in the Law Library lobby for public exhibition during the year following receipt of the award.

A panel composed of two Law Librarians and one Legal Writing Instructor will judge submissions based on how well they demonstrate the following:

  • Sophistication, originality, or unusual depth or breadth in the use of research materials, including, but not limited to, print resources, electronic search engines and databases, primary and secondary legal resources, interdisciplinary
  • resources, and empirical resources
  • Exceptional innovation in research strategy, including the ability to locate, select, and evaluate research materials with discretion
  • Skillful synthesis of research results into a comprehensive scholarly analysis

To learn more about the award including eligibility, acceptable papers, selection criteria and application procedures, please visit:

Ross-Blakley Law Library Award for Exemplary Student Research

The deadline for submission is April 1, 2015.

And remember, if you need help with your research, don’t forget to Ask a Librarian.

Good Luck!

Intersession and Holiday Hours

Intersession has started at the Law School, and our hours have been heavily pruned to reflect that.

 

From Wednesday, December 17 – Saturday, January 10th, our hours will be as follows:

Monday – Saturday from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, with Reference Librarians available Monday – Friday from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm.

 

To celebrate the holidays, the library will be closed on the following days:

Thursday-Sunday, December 25-28th

Thursday, January 1

 

We will be open until 8pm on Sunday, January 11th to allow incoming students to prepare for the beginning of the semester.

Extended Hours for Finals

Starting today, December 3, the Ross-Blakley Law Library will be open until midnight so that you can study just a little bit longer.  Why don’t you stay, work on an essay, look at some law books, seek hiding nooks, and watch our tweets so you can get some treats?

We open at the usual time (7 am on weekdays and 8 am on weekends), and the reference librarians will be on duty during their usual hours, from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm on weekdays.  This schedule will continue through Monday, December 15, the day before finals end.  Say you will join us at the library during our extended hours.

A Sweet Treat from the Law Library During Exams

BananaFinals are approaching and the Law Library wants you to take a break and have a treat.  During the reading and exam period we will send out special Treat Tweets.  When you get the Treat Tweet, come to the Reference office or the Circulation desk in the Law Library and get a treat!  We will have candy and fruit to help you get through the long hours of studying.  Sign-up to follow us on Twitter at:  http://twitter.com/asulawlibrary

Good Luck on Your Exams!

 

ASU LiveSafe Enhances Your Personal Safety

A mobile phone app called ASU LiveSafe is now available to download for free to your smartphone or obtain for free at Apple iTunes or Google Play stores.  You can view more detailed information about the app online at https://cfo.asu.edu/police-livesafe?destination=node%2F16969

This app enhances your personal safety across all ASU campuses.  It allows you to report, immediately, to the ASU Police any tips, information, pictures, audio and video you need to report to them.  

  • ASU LiveSafe Mobile App Features and Benefits:
  • Activate SafeWalk so friends or family members can view your step-by-step progress on a map. Chat live with your designated emergency contacts during your trip. Deactivate Safewalk once you arrive safely.
  • Alert personal emergency contacts in times of distress with a link to your accurate GPS location.

Report tips to ASU Police with your user information for more accurate location information, or enable the anonymous reporting option.

If you have questions about the ASU LiveSafe mobile app features and functions, please send an email to this ASU address.

New Law Library Services

Welcome to a new school year.  The Law Library staff is excited to see all the new faces and our returning students. We were very busy over the summer developing new services to make your life easier.  Three of the new services are:

You can read more about our new services below.

Scan on Demand
Do you need help gathering your research? Strapped for time? Let the Law Library HELP! We will scan and email to you print materials you need from the Law Library or any of the ASU Libraries for free. We will email you your requests usually within 48 hours or sooner.  This service is available to Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law degree seeking students.

What kinds of things can I ask to be scanned?

  • Book Chapters (a single chapter from a particular book)
  • Journal articles (one article from a single volume of a journal title)
  • Microform Materials
  • Tables of Contents & Indexes
  • Other selected pages

Please note that we may not be able to scan fragile items. All requests are subject to copyright compliance.

To make a request, please visit the Scan on Demand FAQ.

Delivery on Demand
Out of town and need a library book? Wish you had the right resource? Check out our new Delivery on Demand service.  Delivery on Demand is a free book delivery service that enables Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law degree seeking students to request and obtain circulating books from the Law Library’s print collections. Requested books will be delivered to you within the continental United States and Canada via the United States Postal Service’s Priority mail service.  To make a request, please visit the Delivery on Demand FAQ.

20-Minute Trainings
Do you need help with your research? Has your study group hit a wall? Let the Library help! Ross-Blakely Law Library reference librarians can provide a customized 20-Minute Training on a variety of topics, skills and databases for you and up to three of your colleagues.  Examples of sessions include HeinOnline, non-legal databases, advanced searching for cases, and researching a paper topic.  You can also provide us with a topic of your choice. To learn more or to make an appointment, please visit the 20-Minute Trainings FAQ.

We hope you use all of our new services.  Have a great semester!

National Grammar Day

The importance of good grammar, particularly for legal practitioners, cannot be emphasized enough.  Good grammar is the foundation of good writing, and good writing is essential to both high achievement in law school and success in legal practice.   With that in mind (and in celebration of National Grammar Day today) we have provided a few resources below which you can use to increase your grammatical mastery.  Since words are the tools of the legal profession, time spent brushing up on your grammar is never wasted.

 

  • Professor Tamara Herrera’s “Legal Writing” column in the monthly Maricopa Lawyer
    Every month Professor Herrera provides insightful and useful writing advice in her “Legal Writing” column for the Maricopa Lawyer.  Recent topics include the correct use of commonly misused words such as “but” and “they,” fixing little ambiguities in your writing, and properly using pronouns.  You can read Professor Herrera’s articles on the website of the Maricopa County Bar Association.
  • Bryan Garner’s Usage Tip of the Day
    Bryan Garner, the editor in chief of Black’s Law Dictionary and the author of many leading books on English usage and legal style, including Garner’s Modern American Usage, is known as an authority on good legal writing.  Garner authors the Usage Tip of the Day on the LawProse blog, through which he provides daily insight on the correct use of words and other grammatical topics. You can receive these tips in your e-mail by subscribing to the blog or by signing up through the Oxford University Press website.

We hope those of you writing seminar and graduation papers this semester find these resources valuable, as well as those producing legal memoranda, court documents, and other written work through externships and other job opportunities.