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Summary of U.S. Supreme Court Decisions 2019-2020

Published August 24, 2020

Summary of U.S. Supreme Court Decisions 2019-2020

The LRC has been granted permission by Professor Leon Friedman from Hofstra Law School to reprint his SUPREME COURT DECISIONS, 2019-2020 TERM (PDF). Overall, it was an interesting term given oral arguments were permitted via telephone for a portion of it.  According to Professor Friedman, of the 60 written decisions, seven were per curiam reversals, leaving 53 fully argued cases; 21 were affirmed and 39 were reversed; and 50 of the cases came from federal courts and 10 from state courts. 

Based on the content of SUPREME COURT DECISIONS, 2019-2020 TERM (PDF), the reader will note that there were thirteen 5-4 (or 5-3) cases. The four liberal justices (Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Justice Elena Kagan and Justice Stephen Breyer) lost nine of them. (See cases no. #3, #13, #14, #24, #25, #26, #31, #42 and #55). There was three cases where they were joined by Chief Justice Roberts, cases #21, and #43, and one case #7, when joined by Justice Gorsuch. The Court found three federal laws unconstitutional (See cases #27, #31 and #35 and one state law unconstitutional, case #26). In criminal cases the Court found in favor of the defendant in seven of thirteen cases. In the First Amendment area, the Court found in favor of the First Amendment right in four of six cases. The Court overruled one precedent, (See case#2).

The LRC thanks Professor Friedman for sharing his publication with the CSULB community.