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American Justice 2019: The Roberts Court Arrives

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Following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy and the controversial confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court plunged into a contentious term that featured divisive cases involving abortion, immigration, capital punishment, and voting rights on the court's docket. In American Justice 2019, Mark Joseph Stern examines the term's most controversial opin Following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy and the controversial confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court plunged into a contentious term that featured divisive cases involving abortion, immigration, capital punishment, and voting rights on the court's docket. In American Justice 2019, Mark Joseph Stern examines the term's most controversial opinions and highlights the consequences of Chief Justice John Roberts stepping into a new role as the court's swing vote. No longer bound by Kennedy's erratic moderation, Roberts has begun doling out victories to both Democrats and Republicans, albeit with a clear rightward tilt. Early in the term, Roberts delivered a public rebuke to Trump's attacks on the judiciary, foreshadowing his refusal to tolerate some of the president's most extreme contortions of the law. Stern tracks the chief justice's evolution from staunch conservative to part-time centrist. Along the way, he details the term's blockbusters and surprises, including an unlikely alliance between Justices Neil Gorsuch and Sonia Sotomayor on criminal justice, and an especially radical ruling on the death penalty that overturned decades of precedent. Stern's account depicts a court sharply divided over its role in American democracy, with the man at its center striving to stay above the political fray without abandoning his conservative instincts.


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Following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy and the controversial confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court plunged into a contentious term that featured divisive cases involving abortion, immigration, capital punishment, and voting rights on the court's docket. In American Justice 2019, Mark Joseph Stern examines the term's most controversial opin Following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy and the controversial confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court plunged into a contentious term that featured divisive cases involving abortion, immigration, capital punishment, and voting rights on the court's docket. In American Justice 2019, Mark Joseph Stern examines the term's most controversial opinions and highlights the consequences of Chief Justice John Roberts stepping into a new role as the court's swing vote. No longer bound by Kennedy's erratic moderation, Roberts has begun doling out victories to both Democrats and Republicans, albeit with a clear rightward tilt. Early in the term, Roberts delivered a public rebuke to Trump's attacks on the judiciary, foreshadowing his refusal to tolerate some of the president's most extreme contortions of the law. Stern tracks the chief justice's evolution from staunch conservative to part-time centrist. Along the way, he details the term's blockbusters and surprises, including an unlikely alliance between Justices Neil Gorsuch and Sonia Sotomayor on criminal justice, and an especially radical ruling on the death penalty that overturned decades of precedent. Stern's account depicts a court sharply divided over its role in American democracy, with the man at its center striving to stay above the political fray without abandoning his conservative instincts.

31 review for American Justice 2019: The Roberts Court Arrives

  1. 4 out of 5

    Neil

    I've enjoyed listening to Mark Joseph Stern as a frequent guest of Dahlia Lithwick's _Amicus_ podcast (probably the only podcast worth listening to, if I had to think of all the ones that I like). I have also enjoyed his articles in _Slate_. Stern is an excellent writer who excels at boiling down specific, complicated Supreme cases from 2019 in ways that readers can understand. He is also adept at considering the broader ramifications of opinions and rulings along with tracing the court's rightw I've enjoyed listening to Mark Joseph Stern as a frequent guest of Dahlia Lithwick's _Amicus_ podcast (probably the only podcast worth listening to, if I had to think of all the ones that I like). I have also enjoyed his articles in _Slate_. Stern is an excellent writer who excels at boiling down specific, complicated Supreme cases from 2019 in ways that readers can understand. He is also adept at considering the broader ramifications of opinions and rulings along with tracing the court's rightward shift as John Roberts becomes the new "swing" justice. This book groups the cases according to different topics, with the ones about big business, reproductive rights, and the census case being the most interesting for someone with little legal knowledge (i.e. me!). The census case, as shocking as it is because of the dishonesty of federal officials such as Wilbur Ross, is also a story of lies, secrets, and deception. Another section, on Gorsuch's skepticism about the so-called administrative state, was illuminating. Here Stern most likely shows some of the very extreme ways that conservative justices might vote in the near future. To close, I want to give Stern credit for helping me understand the significance of Elena Kagan, a justice who I knew about but whose opinions I hadn't paid much attention to until now. Stern points out her importance to the court and the way that her writing shines in her future-oriented dissent from the court's decision about gerrymandering. Interested in learning more about the supreme court but not struggling too much? This book is for you.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    A great summary of what happened in the last term. Very readable and looks ahead to the future with thoughtful insight.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Laura

  4. 5 out of 5

    Max Weiss

  5. 4 out of 5

    Billy Czerwinski

  6. 4 out of 5

    Rodrigo Paramo

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mr. Book

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ali

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alexandria

  10. 4 out of 5

    Dan Mccormick

  11. 5 out of 5

    Johnny

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kimberlee

  13. 4 out of 5

    Reps and Indemnities

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jacqueline Huynh

  15. 4 out of 5

    Clifton Walker

  16. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Ojeda

  17. 4 out of 5

    Charles

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jacqueline Kawate

  19. 4 out of 5

    Renee

  20. 5 out of 5

    Alex

  21. 4 out of 5

    Liz Bierut

  22. 5 out of 5

    Brooke

  23. 5 out of 5

    Makayla Haussler

  24. 4 out of 5

    Ronin

  25. 5 out of 5

    Liz Norell

  26. 4 out of 5

    Claire Lippman

  27. 5 out of 5

    Nicole

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Fink

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

  30. 5 out of 5

    Laura Brasier

  31. 5 out of 5

    Brian Moyer

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