Judge would be first Indian-American named to Supreme Court

"Sri Srinivasan, a federal appeals judge who was born in India and grew up in Kansas, would be the first foreign-born justice to serve on the Supreme Court in more than 50 years.

...

'I think any objection to Sri would have to be based on notions that he’s either not conservative enough or not liberal enough,' said Stephen McAllister, a law professor at the University of Kansas. 'It could not be intellectual ability, could not be writing ability, it could not be his general competence in the law,' McAllister said. 'He’s just extremely talented in all respects.'”

Hundreds May Get New Sentence After SCOTUS Decision

"Hundreds of prisoners serving mandatory life without parole sentences for crimes they committed when they were juveniles may get new sentencing hearings after a Jan. 25 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The court's 2012 decision banning mandatory life without parole sentences for juvenile offenders applies retroactively, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the 6-3 majority.

...

 agreed.

Supreme Court Eases Burden for Prosecutors in Death Penalty Cases

"The Supreme Court Wednesday eased the burden for prosecutors seeking the death penalty, throwing out state court rulings intended to make sure jurors properly considered evidence defense lawyers introduce to argue against a defendant’s execution.

The issue came from Kansas, where a 2001 state supreme court ruling required trial judges to tell jurors that mitigating evidence—that is, aspects about a defendant’s crime or background pointing toward mercy—need not be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

KU law professor calls arguing before High Court memorable, impactful

"A University of Kansas distinguished law professor has extra reason to be pleased with this week's U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding death sentences for three Kansas men. He helped argue the case.

In addition to his KU role, Stephen McAllister works with Attorney General Derek Schmidt as the state's Solicitor General. McAllister appeared with Schmidt in October before the nation's High Court, arguing the Kansas Supreme Court incorrectly applied federal law in the death penalty cases of Reginald and Jonathan Carr and Sydney Gleason.

Kansas Supreme Court hears judicial selection appeal

"Kansas Supreme Court justices spent nearly two hours grilling attorneys on both sides of a case that could determine how independent the judicial branch of government is from the legislative and executive branches.

At issue is the case of Judge Larry T. Solomon, chief judge of the 30th Judicial District in Kingman County, who is challenging a 2014 law that changes the way chief judges are selected.

Abortion case tests limits of Kansas Constitution

"Abortion rights advocates on Wednesday asked all 14 members of the Kansas Court of Appeals to find, for the first time, that the Kansas Constitution provides the same guarantee to privacy rights, including the right to an abortion, that the U.S. Supreme Court has found in the federal Constitution.

But attorneys for the state, as well as anti-abortion lobbyists, argued that the state constitution is much different, and that no such right can be found there.

...

U.S. Supreme Court justices appalled by details of Kansas murder cases

"The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday seemed likely to rule against three Kansas men who challenged their death sentences in what one justice called 'some of the most horrendous murders' he’s ever seen from the bench.

...

Kansas Solicitor General Stephen McAllister, who is also a professor at Kansas University’s School of Law, argued that requiring the state to conduct separate sentencing hearings would lead to inconsistent results and unfairly allow defendants to preview the state’s evidence."

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