Supreme Court in hold­ing pat­tern, await­ing ninth jus­tice

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - OBITUARIES - By Mark Sherman

WASH­ING­TON >> The Supreme Court is set to be­gin its new term as it ended the last one — down one jus­tice and ide­o­log­i­cally dead­locked on a range of is­sues.

The ab­sence of a ninth jus­tice since An­tonin Scalia’s death in Fe­bru­ary has ham­strung the court in sev­eral cases. It’s forced the jus­tices to look for less con­tentious is­sues on which they’re less likely to di­vide by 4-4.

It could be sev­eral months, at least, be­fore the na­tion’s high­est court is again op­er­at­ing at full strength.

How the pres­i­den­tial elec­tion turns out will go a long way to­ward de­ter­min­ing the ju­di­cial out­look of the ninth jus­tice, the di­rec­tion of the court and the out­come of sev­eral cases al­ready be­ing heard and oth­ers that prob­a­bly will be at the court soon.

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