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Polybius's Journal
Polybius's Journal
June 26, 2019

Supreme Court Hands Total Wine, Other Out-Of-State Liquor Retailers A Big Win

Source: NPR

In a case with consequences for fans of wine and liquor, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 7-2 decision, has struck down a two-year residency requirement for anyone seeking an initial license to operate a liquor store in Tennessee.

There is no doubt that if a state had such a restrictive provision involving the sale of any other product, it would be deemed a violation of the Constitution's ban on erecting barriers to interstate commerce.

But the 21st Amendment, which repealed the national prohibition of liquor sales, left to the states the right to regulate those sales within state borders. Mississippi was the last dry state in the country, finally allowing the sale of liquor in 1966.

"[W]hile this requirement is less extreme than the others that the Sixth Circuit found to be unconstitutional, we now hold that it also violates the Commerce Clause and is not shielded by ... the Twenty-first Amendment," Justice Samuel Alito wrote for the majority of the court.

Read more: https://www.npr.org/2019/06/26/732524432/supreme-court-hands-total-wine-other-out-of-state-liquor-retailers-big-win

7-2 decision. Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas dissented.
June 20, 2019

Supreme Court rules giant cross to veterans on public land is not gov't endorsement of religion

Source: NBC News

The Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that a huge concrete cross can stay on public land in suburban Washington, D.C., rejecting a claim that its presence is an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion.

The court, reversing a lower court, said such monuments are essentially historic, not religious, a ruling that potentially extended protection to hundreds of similar tributes nationwide.

The decision was a victory for defenders of the Peace Cross, a 40-foot-tall structure that has stood for more than 90 years in Bladensburg, Maryland. It was built with private funds to honor 49 servicemen from the region who died in World War I. A state parks commission took it over in 1961 to provide for its maintenance, and it now sits in the middle of a busy traffic interchange.

The court rejected a challenge from the American Humanist Association, which filed a lawsuit claiming that the presence of the cross on public land was an endorsement of a single religious faith.

Read more: https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/supreme-court-allows-huge-cross-remain-public-land-n1014661

June 18, 2019

Boris Johnson charges towards Number 10 as Dominic Raab is knocked out of Tory leadership race

Source: Yahoo

Boris Johnson has hurtled closer to becoming Britain’s next Prime Minister after winning the second round of voting in the Conservative Party leadership contest by a considerable margin.

Mr Johnson’s seemingly inexorable journey to victory saw him win 126 votes from Tory MPs.

Dominic Raab was knocked out of the competition after failing to secure the 33 votes required to proceed to the next round.

Rory Stewart, who began the race as a clear outsider, made it through after almost doubling his share of the vote.

Read more: https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/boris-johnson-charges-towards-becoming-prime-minister-as-dominic-raab-knocked-out-of-tory-leadership-race-170917237.html

Looks like there's no stopping him now...
June 4, 2019

Ginsburg sides with conservative justices in ruling over prison sentence

Source: The Hill

The Supreme Court on Monday found that a criminal defendant can be sentenced for violating his supervised release, even if the release expires while he is incarcerated ahead of facing new charges.

The justices, divided in the 5-4 decision, ruled against Jason Mont's argument that a district court shouldn't be able to charge him for violating his release because the term had expired at the time of the new sentencing.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg sided with conservative Justices Clarence Thomas, John Roberts, Samuel Alito and Brett Kavanaugh in the majority. Justice Neil Gorsuch joined liberal Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan in opposing the decision.

Mont had previously been convicted on felony drug and gun charges and served 84 months in prison before beginning a five-year supervised release due to end in March 2017.

Read more: https://thehill.com/regulation/446632-ginsburg-sides-with-conservative-justices-in-ruling-over-prison-sentence

Very interesting case.

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