The Supreme Court began a new term Monday and after last Spring’s big losses on gay marriage and Obamacare, conservatives are wary of the next few months where the highest court in the land is set to take on several major issues.
Among the issues SCOTUS is expected to take on are cases involving union dues, abortion, affirmative action, the death penalty, Obamacare’s contraception mandate, and more.
An Associated Press story Monday cited experts saying the term would be good for conservatives, a kind of bounce-back after major losses last term, but others aren’t so sure.
A key reason for the AP’s confidence is that many of the issues set to come before the court this term have already been ruled on in similar cases by the justices, and they often voted conservative.
“This term, I’d expect a return to the norm, in which the right side of the court wins the majority, but by no means all of the cases,” Georgetown University law school’s Irv Gornstein told The AP.
Ed Whelan, president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, doesn’t share the same outlook.
“I’m not nearly as optimistic about conservative chances as many folks on the left say I should be,” Whelan told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Of the cases, the Supreme Court is likely to hear the first major abortion case in nearly a decade, a case that will examine the constitutionality of Texas’s strict abortion regulations, which have reduced the number of abortion clinics in the state to nearly single digits.
The court will also decide whether public unions can force workers to pay dues even if they aren’t members of the union. A loss on this case would be devastating to public unions, which are already on the decline.
Another case would give the court the opportunity to end affirmative action, the practice where universities consider race as a factor in admissions.
The contraception mandate could get the court’s attention is well. A group of nuns in a legal battle with the mandate grabbed national headlines when Pope Francis met with them during his stateside visit last month.
These weighty decisions will surely bleed over into the 2016 race, as rulings will come down in June of 2016, just months before the election.
This report, by Casey Harper, was cross-posted by arrangement with the Daily Caller News Foundation.