(CNN) - The Supreme Court let stand New York's strict gun control law, rejecting an appeal Monday from a group of gun owners. At issue was whether the Constitution's Second Amendment provided a broad individual right to carry a handgun outside the home for self-defense.
New York's Penal Law 265.03(03) bans possession of a firearm in public - either openly or concealed - unless someone can show "proper cause" - beyond a desire for self-defense - to secure a carry permit.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - Day Two of the culture wars at the Supreme Court over same-sex marriage, and another opportunity for the justices to give political and legal clarity to a contentious issue.
The momentous week kicked off on Tuesday with arguments over California's same-sex marriage ban, and there was little indication when they concluded how the court might rule.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) – Supreme Court justices heard an hour and 20 minutes of arguments Tuesday in the first of two cases that could reshape nothing less than how America defines marriage. Outside the historic court building, activists on both sides of the issue rallied.
"We are not asking for anything more than our neighbors, friends and family, but certainly expect no less," said Todd Bluntworth, who spoke with his husband and their two children to a crowd of supporters hoping for a historic ruling from the Supreme Court striking down laws banning same-sex marriage.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - Members of the Supreme Court on Thursday warned forced spending cuts pose a serious threat to the U.S. justice system, saying they are "simply unsustainable" and will lead to a reduction of critical legal services.
Justices Anthony Kennedy and Stephen Breyer appeared before a panel of the House Appropriations Committee, urging lawmakers to ensure the so-called sequestration measures do not linger.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - Caitlin Halligan, a top judicial nominee of President Obama, was denied a final confirmation vote on the Senate floor Wednesday, after Republicans expressed concern she would be an "activist" on the bench.
Now general counsel for Manhattan's district attorney's office, she is one of two nominees named in January by Obama to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, seen by many as a professional stepping stone to the Supreme Court. She would fill the seat vacated by John Roberts, who joined the high court in 2005 and is now chief justice.
A 51-41 cloture vote failed to achieve the necessary 60 senators to end debate on Halligan's qualifications, with Democrats complaining she was being unfairly filibustered. Her third nomination to this judicial seat remains in political limbo.
Washington (CNN) - The Obama administration on Thursday formally expressed its support of same-sex marriage in California, setting up a high stakes political and constitutional showdown at the U.S. Supreme Court over a fast-evolving and contentious issue.
In a broadly worded legal brief that senior government sources say had President Barack Obama's personal input and blessing, the Justice Department asserted gay and lesbian couples in the nation's largest state have the same "equal protection" right to wed and that voters there were not empowered to ban it.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - It could be the social issue that defines President Barack Obama's second term legacy: same-sex marriage.
He faces a monumental choice on Thursday over whether to put the force of his office behind the idea that gays and lesbians have a constitutional right to marry.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) - A predictably divided Supreme Court appeared ready to strike down – at least in part – the key enforcement provision of the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965, with many conservative justices on Wednesday suggesting it was a constitutionally unnecessary vestige of the civil rights era.
Known as Section 5, it gives the federal government open-ended oversight of states and localities mostly in the South with a history of voter discrimination.
Washington (CNN) – The congressional ban on direct campaign contributions to federal candidates by corporations will stay in place after the Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear an appeal from a campaign supporter of Hillary Clinton.
The justices last week accepted for a review a separate appeal over individual donation limits. That case will be argued in the fall, with an expected ruling some months later.
The case denied Monday is Danielczyk v. United States (12-579).
Washington (CNN) – Two members of the Supreme Court took the unusual step of speaking out over racially insensitive remarks by a federal prosecutor in a drug case, when rejecting review of the defendant's appeal.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote a strongly worded statement Monday, saying the prosecutor's remarks about an African-American suspect were "an affront to the Constitution's guarantee of equal protection of the laws."