Supreme Court has a month left to decide on key issues like Obamacare and same-sex rights

This is the last month of the current Supreme Court session. The next one begins in October. Photo by Shutterstock.

This is the last month of the current Supreme Court session. The next one begins in October. Press Play gets a lightning round of what’s left on the court’s docket. 

California v. Texas: This is another case involving Obamacare, which became law more than a decade ago. Conservatives are once again asking the high court to strike down the Affordable Care Act. Questions before the court this time: Do the individual and state plaintiffs have standing to challenge the individual mandate? Did making the penalty of not buying health insurance under the individual mandate make the individual mandate unconstitutional? 

Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: This involves a Catholic social services agency that doesn’t want to place foster children with same-sex couples. Philadelphia says all the contractors it uses to screen potential foster parents have to follow the city’s anti-discrimination policies. The court must decide: Whether same-sex couples deserve the same protections as racial minorities, whether religious groups can define marriage as between a man and a woman.

Brnovich v. the Democratic National Committee: This involves Arizona and so-called “ballot harvesting,” as well as ballots that may have been cast in the wrong precinct. The court must decide whether Arizona’s out-of-precinct policy violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, and 

whether Arizona’s ballot collection law, which permits only certain persons (i.e., family and household members, caregivers, mail carriers and elections officials) to handle another person’s completed early ballot, violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act or the 15th Amendment.

The other big question mark about the end of this Supreme Court term is the future of Justice Stephen Breyer, who’s 82. He is reliably liberal and the second-longest-serving justice. 

Also, the California State Supreme Court this week will examine how the state applies death sentences. 

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