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Supreme Court declines case of photographer who refused to do business with gays

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to consider whether a New Mexico photography company had free speech grounds to refuse to shoot the commitment ceremony of a same-sex couple. The court’s refusal to intervene means an August 2013 New Mexico Supreme Court decision…

Ted Cruz brags to Christian students: I’ve beaten atheists before, and I can do it again

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) told a group of Christian college students that their religious liberty was under attack, but the likely 2016 presidential candidate assured them he had experience fighting back against the atheist hordes. “These are troubled times, and religious liberty – the very first liberty in the bill…

Bernie Sanders: Supreme Court is paving the way to an oligarchic society

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) blasted the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on Wednesday to abolish overall federal campaign spending limits, meaning that wealthy individuals now have carte blanche to spend as much as they like to affect the outcomes of federal elections. “Freedom of speech, in my view, does not mean…

Supreme Court strikes down overall limits on federal campaign contributions

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday expanded how much political donors can give candidates and parties in federal elections by striking down a key pillar of campaign finance law. On a 5-4 vote, the court struck down the overall limits on how much individuals…

Supreme Court wary of major change to software patent law

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Supreme Court justices stepped gingerly into a raging debate over computer software on Monday, voicing concerns about vaguely defined patents but signaling they would avoid any radical change to existing law. This may help tech companies fend off lawsuits filed by “patent trolls,”…

Supreme Court declines new birth control cases brought by Roman Catholic groups

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up preliminary appeals brought by Roman Catholic groups that want an exemption from part of President Barack Obama’s healthcare law requiring employers to provide insurance that covers contraception. The cases were brought by a series…

Supreme Court upholds federal firearms ban against domestic abusers

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld a federal law Wednesday barring anyone convicted of even a minor domestic violence charge from ever owning a gun. In a unanimous ruling, the nine justices ruled against James Castleman, who argued that his past conviction in Tennessee of misdemeanor domestic assault against the mother…

Supreme Court rules severance payments for laid off workers are taxable

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that taxes are due for Social Security and Medicare on severance packages paid to workers who are laid off involuntarily, overturning a lower court ruling that could have triggered a wave of payroll tax refund requests from U.S. businesses. In…

Supreme Court extends whistleblower protections to employees at private firms

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that employees at private firms that contract with publicly traded companies are subject to whistleblower protections. In a 6-3 vote along non-ideological lines, the court ruled that two whistleblowers were legally protected against retaliation after they…

Death-row inmate files Supreme Court challenge to Florida’s use of prisoners’ IQ scores

A Florida inmate challenged the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday arguing that he is intellectually disabled and therefore should not be executed, highlighting the issue of the mentally ill on death row. Freddie Lee Hall, 68, has spent 35 years on death row for the rape and murder of a…

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