Justice & the Courts
In a recent appearance on Meet the Press, New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan, who until recently was head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, shared his views about what he believed was the primary problem confronting the Roman Catholic Church – “we’ve been out-marketed.” Dolan says that while the Catholic Church does not favor same-sex marriage, its leaders are tired of being characterized as “anti-gay” rather than “pro-traditional marriage.”
The Supreme Court says it will hear a case challenging the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate, the first legal challenge to the law it has taken up since its split 5-4 decision to uphold the basic underpinnings of the law last year.
A military jury decided this week to recommend the death sentence for convicted Fort Hood shooter Maj. Nidal Hasan, the Army psychiatrist who killed 13 people and wounded another 32 when he opened fire on a building packed with unarmed soldiers and civilians in 2009. Before and during his trial, Hasan expressed his wish to die in order to become a Muslim martyr. His unorthodox defense at trial and the… more
It’s been nearly half a century since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. shared his hope for a future in which the “manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination” would no longer bind black Americans, for a day when the United States would “rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed…that all men are created equal.” His speech, delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to… more
The issue of economic mobility has sparked renewed interest, with a recent report finding that your childhood hometown plays a significant role in how easily you’ll advance to higher income brackets as an adult. David Leonhardt’s latest piece for The New York Times examines the study, which finds rates of upward mobility are higher in metropolitan areas where poor families are dispersed among mixed-income neighborhoods. It also finds that children… more
The Supreme Court delivered two landmark decisions affecting same-sex marriage in the United States yesterday, one expanding the federal definition of marriage and the other allowing California to once again wed gay and lesbian couples. In my latest column for “Figuring Faith,” I examine how rapidly shifting public opinion on same-sex marriage has altered America’s religious landscape and paved the way for the court’s latest rulings. If we rewind the… more
Earlier today, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to strike down section three of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), expanding the federal government’s definition of marriage from “only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife” to also include same-sex couples legally married in the states where they live. The court said the law, which passed Congress with bipartisan support and was signed by President… more
In a new column for Huffington Post Politics, PRRI Research Director Daniel Cox examines the divide between American support for the general principle of affirmative action and its application in college admissions. His insight is well-timed, as the Supreme Court is set to rule later this month on the constitutionality of using race as a factor in college admissions. Cox explores PRRI’s latest findings as part of the spectrum of… more
By refusing to hear a case on Alabama’s immigration law and letting the lower court decision stand, the Supreme Court’s decision more closely aligns with public preferences for federally-based solutions to immigration.
Later this month, the Supreme Court will take up two important cases related to same-sex marriage. As this week’s graphic shows, there are religious groups on both sides of the same-sex marriage debate.