January 8, 2013
By Scottie Thomaston
Updated 1/9/13 at 3:10ET to reflect changed dates in the Windsor case.
Given the news yesterday that the marriage cases have been scheduled for oral arguments at the Supreme Court, we now have a general idea of how all this will play out for the rest of the year.
Hollingsworth v. Perry
This is the challenge to California’s Proposition 8. The Olson/Boies team will argue for the plaintiffs and the proponents’ lawyers will argue their side: there will be no outside counsel in this case.
Since there were no procedural steps to work out in this case, no briefing schedule was officially set by the Court in this case. However, there are rules to govern Supreme Court procedures and those generally guide the briefing schedule. According to the rules, the opening brief of the proponents of Prop 8 should be due January 22.
Then, on January 29, amicus curiae briefs in support of the proponents of Prop 8 are due.
Following that, on February 21, responses to proponents are due. These will be responses from both the plaintiffs and the city and county of San Francisco.
On February 28, amicus briefs in support of plaintiffs are due.
And finally, on March 19, the proponents’ reply brief is due.
Oral argument is set for March 26 at 10AM Eastern time. Currently, only one hour is allotted for argument, but this case is the only one scheduled that day. SCOTUSBlog has suggested that it is likely we will see the argument time expanded beyond one hour.
United States v. Windsor
This is Edith Windsor’s challenge to Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) led by the ACLU and the NYCLU. The Court accepted the question on Section 3 of DOMA’s constitutionality as it was presented in the Justice Department’s petition for certiorari and they added questions on jurisdiction and standing: whether they have the authority to hear the case given that the Justice Department agrees with the plaintiffs and the court below (the district court and the Second Circuit here) that Section 3 of DOMA is unconstitutional; and whether the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG) who is defending the law on behalf of House Republicans has Article III standing to do so. The Court appointed an outside attorney to argue against the Court’s authority to hear the Justice Department’s claims and against BLAG’s standing.
The first brief is due on January 22. The first brief will be from BLAG, arguing that Section 3 of DOMA is constitutional.
The Court-appointed attorney’s brief arguing against jurisdiction and standing is due January 24.
Following that, briefs on the jurisdictional question from the remaining parties (BLAG, DOJ, Edith Windsor) are due February 22. And reply briefs are due on March 20.
The Solicitor General’s (SG, on behalf of the Justice Department and the federal defendants) brief on the merits of Section 3 of DOMA’s constitutionality is due on February 22. And Edith Windsor’s merits brief is due February 26. Then, BLAG’s reply brief will be due March 20 – filed a week before oral argument as per Supreme Court rules.
Amicus curiae briefs from outside parties in support of Edith Windsor or the Solicitor General are due a week after the Solicitor General’s brief. According to the Supreme Court’s rules, other amicus briefs “shall be submitted within 7 days after the brief for the party supported is filed, or if in support of neither party, within 7 days after the time allowed for filing the petitioner’s or appellant’s brief.”
Oral argument is set for March 27 at 10AM Eastern time. Currently, as noted above in the Prop 8 case, only one hour is allotted for argument in this case, but this case is the only one scheduled that day. SCOTUSBlog has suggested that it is likely we will see the argument time expanded beyond one hour.
The Court ends its term by July 4, but they usually recess by the end of June. Typically, the bigger decisions are released in the last days of the term. Decisions in these two cases are expected near the end of June.
Thanks to Kathleen for providing some of these dates, and see also this post from Nan Hunter