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
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?
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
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.
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.
- Kimble v. Marvel Enterprises
Whether a patent holder cannot charge royalties for the use of an invention after its patent term has expired.
- Horne v. Department of Agriculture
Whether the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause applies to personal property as well as real property.
- 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.
- Texas Dept. of Housing v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc.
Whether disparate-impact claims are cognizable under the Fair Housing Act.
For full coverage of these decisions and others, check out these websites:
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