Why am I talking about a denial of certiorari for a case to the Supreme Court? Because of two things. First, the denial yesterday of Alderman v. U.S. included a somewhat rare written dissent by Justice Thomas (who was joined by Justice Scalia). Justice Thomas “objected to the court’s refusal to hear a commerce clause challenge to a federal law that barred convicted felons from owning a bullet-proof vest. Scalia joined all but one footnote of Thomas’ dissent.”
Why is this important? As noted in the article,
“SCOTUSblog calls the opinion “an important dissent on the scope of Congress’ power under the Constitution’s commerce clause—an issue that is newly energized in the national debate over the new health reform law.”
This is the issue that is probably going to decide the number of cases that are making their way through the courts (to the Supremes) on the issue of the 2010 health care reform legislation. Just something to keep an eye on.