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Commentary: Gerrymandering and the Court

Oct 17, 2017

The Supreme Court is back in business after its summer recess.  It is hearing oral arguments on several cases that have landmark potential.  Perhaps the most consequential is Gill v Whitford, a Wisconsin case about gerrymandering.

Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision involving a Missouri church ultimately could make it easier for religious institutions to seek out state money for non-religious needs.

The justices ruled 7-2 in favor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Columbia, which had sought a state grant to put a soft surface on its preschool playground, but was denied funding. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote it is “odious to our Constitution” to exclude the church from the grant program.

Supreme Court Will Interpret Religious Freedom in Trinity Lutheran Church Case

Apr 18, 2017
Beatriz Costa-Lima / KBIA

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments Wednesday in what could become a game-changing religious freedom case.

And it began on a Columbia church playground.

Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia v. Comer has worked its way up the judicial ladder since 2012, when the church's application to Missouri's Scrap Tire Surface Material Grant program was rejected by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. The case was formerly known as Trinity v. Pauley — referring to the former director of the Department of Natural Resources, Sara Parker Pauley.

William Murphy via Flickr

Some Missouri counties are still not issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite last week's Supreme Court ruling, and an advocacy group is threatening legal action to force compliance.

The nation greets the coming of July each year with fireworks on the National Mall and, days earlier, explosive decisions at the U.S. Supreme Court.

While the Mall fireworks dissipate within moments, the court's decisions will have repercussions for decades. Indeed, no sooner was the ink dry on this term's contraception decision than the court's three female justices accused their male colleagues of reneging.

WallyG / FLICKR

Missouri home health care workers could be affected by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on union fees in Illinois.

The Supreme Court ruled today that the 2010 Affordable Care Act is constitutional — giving the Obama administration a big election year win over conservative critics who argue that the health care overhaul is a step on the way toward socialized medicine.

chris koster
File photo / KBIA

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster wants the U.S. Supreme Court to reject an individual health insurance mandate but uphold other parts of the federal health care law.