Cases the Supreme Court Avoided Today

Justices duck rulings on NSA, gay rights, campaign finance

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Apr 7, 2014 9:17 AM CDT | Updated Apr 7, 2014 12:19 PM CDT

(Newser) – The Supreme Court quietly made a bunch of headlines today, mainly by rejecting potentially explosive cases. Here's a roundup of the day's (in)action:

  • Gay rights: The court announced that it would not take up the highly charged case that began when a New Mexico wedding photographer refused to do the honors for a same-sex commitment ceremony, Politico reports. New Mexico's Supreme Court ruled that this amounted to illegal discrimination. That ruling will now stand in New Mexico, but only in New Mexico.

  • NSA: The justices declined a conservative lawyer's unusual request that it bypass the usual appeals process and immediately take up a case arguing that the NSA's bulk collection of millions of Americans' telephone records violated the Constitution's ban on unreasonable search and seizure, the AP reports. A lower court had agreed with the lawyer that the program was "almost certainly" unconstitutional.
  • Campaign finance: After last week's ruling, reform advocates are likely happy that the court decided not to take up a challenge to the 100-year-old rules banning direct contributions from corporations to candidates. Iowa Right to Life had asked the court to rule that corporations had the same free speech rights as individuals, the AP explains.
As is customary, the Court offered no commentary on any of the decisions.

This Dec. 19, 2013, file photo shows a view of the Supreme Court from near the top of the Capitol Dome on Capitol Hill, in Washington
This Dec. 19, 2013, file photo shows a view of the Supreme Court from near the top of the Capitol Dome on Capitol Hill, in Washington   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
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