Wednesday, June 25, 2008

No Death Penalty For Rape: Kennedy Beats Louisiana

As it should be.  5-4, with Justice Kennedy casting the deciding vote (and writing the majority opinion). We covered this case earlier (and the Boston Legal spoof on it) here. Alito wrote the dissent which was joined by Scalia, Thomas, and Chief Justice Roberts. [Opinion (.pdf)][NYTimes], [SCOTUSblog], [ATL], [WaPo]

Unfortunately, the court wasn't so right when it came to deciding appropriate damages for the Exxon Valdez spill. The court vacated the 9th Circuit judgment of $2.5 billion in punitive damages for the victims, slashing the number to $500 million.  The vote was 5-3, with Alito not participating because of his stock holdings.  Souter wrote the majority, it seems. [NYTimes], [WaPo]

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