My Decision: Madison v. Alabama

My opinion in Madison v. Alabama is available at this link. In short, I would hold that the Eighth Amendment prohibits the execution of a prisoner who does not rationally understand the circumstances of his execution and the reasons for which he is being put to death.

After months of hard work, hours of combing through Briefs, days of reviewing Supreme Court jurisprudence, and many cups of coffee, my first opinion is finished. The case, Madison v. Alabama, involves whether the Eighth Amendment’s Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause prohibits the execution of a prisoner whose mental illness prevents him from recalling the crime for which he was convicted.

A preview of the case is available on this blog. I have also provided a procedural history in Part I of my opinion. In addition, more information about the Supreme Court’s death penalty jurisprudence is available here.

Having now published my opinion, the next task is simply to sit back and wait for the Supreme Court to release theirs. Once the Court does so, I then can review the similarities and differences between its opinion and my own. In fact, there is a possibility of opinions today at 10:00am EDT. But, in the event that the Court does not release its decision in Madison in two hours’ time, more opportunities will come any given Tuesday or Thursday, or every third Monday, each week moving forward (assuming the Justices are not on recess). The ultimate deadline, of course, is the end of the 2018 Term this coming June. Hopefully Madison will be released before then.

In the meantime, I will begin publishing “blockbuster reviews” for this Court’s cases once the decisions in such cases are released. And, eventually, I earnestly look forward to the Orders lists granting cases for October 2019 Term.

A sincere thanks to any and all who read through my own opinion. All questions, comments, and concerns (so long as they are espoused in a civil manner) are welcome!

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