July 23, 2014 – Professor Richard Re was cited in a Supreme Court Today article on U.S. Supreme Court unanimity and overturning precedent.
Richard Re, a professor at UCLA School of Law, Los Angeles, explained some of these opinions through what he calls the “one last chance” doctrine.
“The doctrine of one last chance holds that the Court must stay its hand once -- but just once -- before issuing immediately disruptive decisions,” he wrote on his blog Re’s Judicata.
He cites Nw. Austin Mun. Util. Dist. No. One v. Holder, 557 U.S. 193 (2009) as one of the most obvious examples of that doctrine.
There the court was just shy of invalidating the Voting Rights Act’s coverage formula, which specifies which jurisdictions must get “preclearance” from the U.S. Attorney General or the U.S. District Court for D.C. before making any change affecting voting.
The court packed its Northwest Austin decision “with dicta suggesting that the merits would likely be decided against the Act’s constitutionality,” Re said.