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Monday, June 16, 2008

The Week Ahead

Well, things keep moving along as we head toward the July 4th holiday, the accompanying Senate recess and the end of the Supreme Court's 2007/2008 term. Here are what we anticipate being the highlights of this week.

After a busy week with the Boumediene v. Bush decision, the Supreme Court still has a few more decisions to release before the end of the term, notably the DC gun case. Though the Court released another 5-4 opinion, this one addressing visas and immigration status, they did not announce any additional decision days this week, so we'll have to keep waiting to see what next Monday brings.

Meanwhile, Sixth Circuit nominees Helene N. White and Raymond Kethledge, who were approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee last Thursday, face a vote on the Senate floor. While nothing is set in stone, we anticipate that the vote will take place this week, and will almost certainly occur before the July 4th recess. We also anticipate more election-year grandstanding and rhetoric from Senate Republicans, but that's really nothing new.

Finally, William "Jim" Haynes II—the former General Counsel for the Department of Defense who helped develop the legal justification for the use of torture in interrogation of terror suspects—will testify at an open Senate hearing in front of the Committee on Armed Services tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. Haynes is also a former nominee to Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals; his nomination was ultimately withdrawn in the face of widespread opposition.

The hearing is Part I of an inquiry into the treatment of detainees in U.S. custody, specifically on the origins of aggressive interrogation techniques.

Of course, anything might happen--things can often heat up in the weeks just before a recess, so we here at Justice Watch will be sure to keep you posted.

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