Charlie Buttrey

June 28, 2019

In another case of unexpected bedfellows, the U.S. Supreme Court yesterday ruled that when a driver suspected of operating under the influence is unconscious, law enforcement authorities need not obtain a warrant before obtaining a blood sample.

What was interesting is that the Court’s decision, like several in recent days, did not wholly reflect the liberal/conservative divide that most observers of the Court have come to expect.  The majority decision was written by (very conservative) Justice Alito, and he was joined by (conservative) Chief Justice Roberts, (probably conservative) Justice Kavanaugh and (usually reliably liberal) Justice Breyer.  (Extremely conservative) Justice Thomas wrote a separate opinion concurring in the result.  In dissent, the other three generally liberal justices, Kagan, Ginsburg and Sotomayor, were joined by Trump appointee Gorsuch.

 

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