U.S. Supreme Court

Mandel Ngan / AFP/Getty images via NPR

President Trump’s appointee to the Supreme Court is sparking conversation among political observers here in Syracuse, as well as among the state’s elected officials. 

Professor of Political Science at the Maxwell School, Thomas Keck, says Brett Kavanaugh’s appointment means issues that had partisan debate in recent history would now be taking a consistently conservative bend. 

supremecourt.gov

A case heard Monday in the U.S. Supreme Court and to be decided later on this year could have a big impact on public worker unions in New York.

The case, known as Janus v AFSCME, was brought by  Mark Janus, a public employee in Illinois, who is challenging his state’s policy of requiring that he pay union dues to the Illinois branch of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees,  even though he does not want to be a member.

Janus and his lawyers say the mandatory payments violate his First Amendment right to not be compelled to fund political speech.

Big Decisions to be Made as U.S. Supreme Court Begins new Term with Justice Neil Gorsuch

Oct 3, 2017
supremecourt.gov

A Syracuse University Law Professor says President Trump’s appointment of new Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch should not be significant in the Justice’s decisions moving into his official first term. Professor William Banks thinks that Gorsuch’s values will be much more impactful.

 “I think Mr. Gorsuch is going to prove himself to be one of the most, if not the most conservative Justice on the court. Probably more conservative than Justice Scalia, or at least as conservative.”

Scott Willis / WAER News

The president of the group CNY Pride says the supreme court’s ruling supporting same sex marriage is probably the most the LGBT community can hope for within the realm of marriage and the rights that come with it.  Dr. Bruce Carter is also an Assistant Professor in the Psychology and Child and Family Studies Departments at Syracuse University's Falk College.  

  He says the decision is consistent with similar cases recognizing the rights of individuals.  He cites Justice Anthony Kennedy’s reasoning in the  decision…

Scott Willis / WAER News

  The effort to take large amounts of anonymous campaign donations out of political campaigns came to Syracuse City Hall Monday where common councilors approved a resolution supporting a constitutional amendment to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 "Citizens United" ruling.  

Councilor Jean Kessner voted yes because she supports the sentiment.  But she feels a constitutional amendment is a very slow path to get the results they want.

Scott Willis / WAER News

The head of an LGBT support group says a Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage would be very meaningful for the older LGBT population they serve.  Supreme Court justices heard oral arguments Tuesday on two issues regarding same-sex marriages.    Executive Director of Sage Upstate Kim Dill  says older couples have waited for this their entire lives. 

people with large signs saying corporations are not people, money is not speech
Move to Amend

Rallies are being held in Syracuse and across the country today in reaction to the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down overall limits on political contributions.  The 5 to 4 ruling in McCutcheon vs. FEC allows a single donor to give up to $3.5 million per election cycle to a political party.  The court’s majority said the previous $123,200 cap violated the First Amendment.  

Scott Willis / WAER News

Central New Yorkers opposed to the U-S Supreme Court’s Citizens United Decision marked the 4th anniversary of the ruling Tuesday by vowing to overturn it.  Supporters of the group Move to Amend want a constitutional amendment that would reverse what they say is corporations growing financial and corrupting influence on elections.   Group co-chair Michael Messina-Yauchzy  says we need to remember the first words of the constitution.