Issue: (1) Whether the Fourth Circuit created an impermissible
end-run around Harrington v. Richter,Cullen v. Pinholster, and the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act
by holding that a state court’s merits
determination is not an “adjudication on the
merits” whenever the state prisoner later
presents the federal court with new material
evidence and the state court decided the ineffective assistance claim without an evidentiary
hearing and (2) whether the Fourth Circuit wrongly ignored 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254(d) and Strickland v. Washington in concluding as a de novo matter,
and contrary to the Virginia Supreme Court and
Strickland, that trial counsel were ineffective for
deciding not to argue mental retardation at
On Monday at 9:30 a.m. we expect orders from the April 24 Conference. We expect one or more opinions in argued cases at 10 a.m. on Wednesday. We will be live-blogging beginning at 9:45.
This is the second week of the April sitting. On Tuesday the Court will hear oral argument in Obergefell v. Hodges, which is consolidated with three other cases, on the questions of whether the Fourteenth Amendment requires that states grant and/or recognize same-sex marriages. We will be live-blogging updates from the oral argument beginning at 11 a.m.
Glossip v. Gross The constitutionality under the Eighth Amendment of using a sedative as the first drug in a death penalty protocol.