Supreme Court

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell is officially a free man, but he paid a heavy price to get there.

Federal prosecutors said Thursday they're moving to drop corruption charges against McDonnell in light of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in June that overturned the former governor's corruption conviction.

The court unanimously held that the actions McDonnell took to benefit a businessman who gave him luxury gifts may have been distasteful but did not cross the line into illegal conduct.

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FREDERICK, Md. (AP) - A Maryland city's plan to rid its City Hall courtyard of a statue of the man who wrote the 1857 Dred Scott decision affirming slavery won't be second-guessed by the state.

Maryland Historical Trust Director Elizabeth Hughes wrote in a Sept. 2 letter to officials in Frederick that the agency lacks jurisdiction because the bust of Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney (TAW'-nee) is not covered by an easement for a 1983 building preservation grant.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Attorneys are meeting with a judge in advance of the retrial of a former death-row inmate for a drug-related killing.

Monday's pretrial conference involves the prosecution of Isaiah McCoy, who was convicted in the 2010 death of 30-year-old James Mumford in Dover.

Delaware's Supreme Court last year ordered a new trial for McCoy because of errors by the judge and prosecutor at his first trial.

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CUMBERLAND, Md. (AP) – There will be no trial in a legal dispute over the Ten Commandments in Western Maryland. The plaintiff has withdrawn his lawsuit.

Jeffrey Davis of Swanton voluntarily dropped the matter without explanation in a letter filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore. He declined to explain his decision when reached by telephone Tuesday.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Lawyers for Virginia's former first lady say her corruption convictions should be vacated after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned her husband's convictions.
 
News outlets report that Maureen McDonnell's attorneys asked the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to vacate her convictions in a motion filed Monday. Former Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife were convicted of doing favors for a wealthy businessman for more than $165,000 in gifts and loans. The high court overturned his conviction and sent it back to the appeals court.
 

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Top Virginia Republicans have asked the Justice Department to stop trying to convict former Gov. Bob McDonnell of corruption.

House Speaker William Howell and Senate Majority Leader Thomas Norment said in a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch Friday that prosecuting McDonnell again will "unnecessarily disrupt" the state and be costly to taxpayers. 

McDonnell was convicted in 2014 of doing favors for a wealthy businessman in exchange for gifts and loans.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - A unanimous Supreme Court has dismissed a Republican appeal over congressional districts in Virginia.
 
The justices on Monday left in place a decision by a lower court that said Virginia illegally packed black voters into one district to make adjacent districts safer for Republican incumbents.
 
Republican members of Congress wanted the court to reinstate the districting map. But the justices ruled that the elected officials did not have the right to challenge the court ruling.
 

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WASHINGTON (AP) - Sen. Ben Cardin is scheduled to meet with Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland.

The senator is set to meet Garland on Monday in Washington and meet with reporters.

The Maryland Democrat says it's necessary for the Senate to fulfill its constitutional responsibility to consider the nomination through a fair hearing and thoughtful floor debate.

Cardin says Garland is an "eminently qualified pick."

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WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court is signaling it probably will reject a Republican appeal over congressional districts in Virginia.
 
The court's liberal justices sounded skeptical Monday about a challenge brought by Republican members of Congress who want the Supreme Court to reinstate a districting map that had been tossed out by a lower court.
 
The lower court said Virginia illegally packed black voters into one district to make adjacent districts safer for Republican incumbents.
 
A 4-4 tie would uphold the lower court ruling.
 
 

equality virginia website

A measure in the Virginia legislature would allow state government officials from having to perform same-sex marriages if it violates their religious beliefs.

The bill also would allow religious organizations and their employees to deny services and facilities for marriage related activities.

The bill was approved by a legislative committee despite the opposition of the American Civil Liberties Union and Equality Virginia.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the legislation was introduced after the U.S. Supreme Court made same-sex marriage legal.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Republicans are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to put a new congressional map for Virginia on hold and allow the 2016 elections to proceed under the old boundaries.

A three-judge panel last week ordered the state to impose a new redistricting plan crafted by a court-appointed expert. The panel had previously ruled that lawmakers in 2012 illegally packed black voters into the 3rd Congressional District, represented by Democrat Bobby Scott, to make surrounding districts safer for GOP incumbents.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's appeal of his public corruption convictions has gotten support from former lawyers for Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton.

Media outlets report that Greg Craig, former White House counsel for Obama, and John M. Quinn, former counsel to Clinton, were among the signers of 11 amicus briefs that support McDonnell's position in his appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - A 55-year-old law school student from Maryland is having his case heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.
 
Stephen Shapiro's case began with his frustration over the way Maryland redrew the state's eight Congressional districts in 2011. The American University law school student sees the shapes of some of the state's districts as nonsensical. But several months after he sued over the districts in 2013 a judge threw the lawsuit out, ruling it wasn't based on a valid legal theory.
 

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A Maryland board is scheduled to consider a contract to hire auditors temporarily to help the state process nearly 18,000 amended personal income tax returns due to a Supreme Court decision.

The Board of Public Works is set to take up the contract for up to $600,000 Wednesday.

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FREDERICK, Md. (AP) - Frederick officials have approved a resolution to move a bronze bust of the U.S. Supreme Court chief justice who wrote the 1857 Dred Scott decision affirming slavery.

The Frederick News-Post reports that the Board of Alderman's unanimous decision Thursday begins a process that could lead to removing the bust of Roger Brooke Taney (TAW'-nee) from outside City Hall, where it has been since 1931.

Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak says other commissions will be asked for their input on possibly relocating the statue.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review his public corruption convictions.

McDonnell's attorneys filed their petition Tuesday, arguing that he was convicted based on an overly broad definition of corruption that puts all elected officials at risk of prosecution.

Prosecutors have 30 days to respond. The justices have no deadline for deciding whether to consider the appeal.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and Comptroller Peter Franchot are urging state residents who paid income taxes in another state between 2011 and 2014 to apply for a tax refund against the county portion of their income taxes.

The Republican governor and the Democratic comptroller made the announcement Monday.

Hogan says an estimated 55,000 taxpayers are eligible, due to a Supreme Court ruling earlier this year. Hogan says it could add up to more than $200 million.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The U.S. Supreme Court wants to hear from federal prosecutors before deciding whether former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell will have to go to prison while he appeals his corruption convictions.

Chief Justice John Roberts issued an order Monday giving prosecutors until Wednesday to respond to McDonnell's request to remain free. The order also says a federal appeals court order that puts the wheels in motion to send McDonnell to prison will be put on hold until Roberts or the Supreme Court can decide on McDonnell's request.

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Virginia Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe says he will reappoint Justice Jane Marum Roush next month when her initial appointment expires.

McAuliffe told reporters his plans Monday after the state Senate adjourned from a special legislative session meant to produce a new state congressional map and settle a state Supreme Court appointment.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has asked a federal appeals court to allow him to remain free while he appeals his public corruption convictions to the U.S. Supreme Court.

McDonnell filed the motion Thursday with the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

A three-judge panel of the court unanimously upheld McDonnell's convictions in July. The full 15-member court said Tuesday that it won't reconsider that panel's ruling. The court didn't say whether McDonnell will be allowed to remain free pending further appeal.

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FREDERICK, Md. (AP) - A Frederick alderwoman is renewing a call for removing a statue of U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney from City Hall.

Taney wrote the 1857 Dred Scott decision upholding slavery. The ruling became a catalyst for the Civil War.  It called black people "beings of an inferior order."

Taney practiced law in Frederick from 1801 to 1823.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware officials have decided not to develop the state's own health insurance exchange under the Affordable Care Act and instead will keep the current state-federal partnership model.

Delaware was granted nonbinding approval in June to develop a supported state-based health insurance marketplace, but Health and Social Services Secretary Rita Landgraf said Thursday that the state will not move forward with the plan.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe says he'll make a renewed push to expand Medicaid now that Republican primaries are over and the U.S. Supreme Court recently issued a decision upholding the Affordable Care Act.

McAuliffe said Thursday in a conference call with reporters that the Republican lawmakers who have previously blocked Medicaid expansion will be more open to compromise during next year's legislative session.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court has declared that same-sex couples have a right to marry anywhere in the United States.
 
Gay and lesbian couples already can marry in 36 states and the District of Columbia. The court's ruling on Friday means the remaining 14 states, in the South and Midwest, will have to stop enforcing their bans on same-sex marriage.
 
The outcome is the culmination of two decades of Supreme Court litigation over marriage, and gay rights generally.
 

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state Supreme Court has rejected an appeal from the Republican candidate in last year's recorder of deeds race in Kent County.

The court ruled Thursday that a judge should have dismissed a petition filed by La Mar Gunn challenging the election results, rather than ordering a hand recount. That recount ended in a tie, and Democratic Gov. Jack Markell appointed Democratic incumbent Betty Lou McKenna to the office.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The Delaware Senate has unanimously approved Gov. Jack Markell's nominations to fill vacancies on the state Supreme Court and Superior Court.

Senators on Wednesday confirmed Collins Seitz Jr. to succeed retired Supreme Court Justice Henry DuPont Ridgely. They also approved Jeffrey Clark, a Kent County lawyer, state Public Service Commission member, and former Senate attorney, for a Superior Court judgeship.

The votes came after friendly vettings by the Senate Executive Committee.

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WESTMINSTER, Md. (AP) - The newly elected Carroll County Commissioners are standing silent on a disputed public-prayer policy.

The five-member, all-Republican board opened its first meeting Tuesday in Westminster with a moment of silence instead of a prayer. They took no official action regarding the previous board's policy of opening meetings with sometimes overtly Christian prayers, said by the commissioners themselves.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland's governor says the state will review its collective bargaining arrangement for home-care workers after a Supreme Court ruling on those workers and union costs.

The court ruled 5-4 on Monday that thousands of home health care workers in Illinois cannot be required to pay fees that help cover a union's costs of collective bargaining.

Maryland is one of at least nine other states that have allowed home care workers to join unions.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court is taking up a dispute over how a state may tax income its residents earn in another state.

The high court agreed Tuesday to hear an appeal from Maryland officials to overturn a lower court ruling that found the state's tax law unconstitutional.

Maryland law allows residents to deduct income taxes paid to other states from their Maryland state tax. But it does not apply that deduction when it comes to local "piggyback taxes" the state collects for county and city governments.

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WESTMINSTER, Md. (AP) - The Carroll County Commissioners are reverting to a disputed prayer policy in light of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

The five Republican commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to reverse their April decision limiting opening prayers at public meetings to nonsectarian invocations. Last month's resolution followed a federal court order barring the commissioners from opening their meetings with overtly Christian prayers.

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