The U.S. Supreme Court delivered a blow, but not a fatal one, to public campaign financing, with a 5-4 decision striking down a central provision of an Arizona law.
The Arizona law offers public funds to state legislative and executive-branch candidates who abide by tight contribution and spending limits. Another provision gives additional dollars when publicly funded candidates face big-spending opponents or outside money groups — and that's what was rejected by Chief Justice John Roberts, writing for the majority.
Two towns along the swollen Souris River in North Dakota have met different fates: In Burlington, residents fought day and night to build levees to protect their town, but the water just came in too fast. Hundreds of homes are lost. But farther downstream in Velva, N.D., residents seem to have beaten the clock and will get their levees high enough to hold back the flood waters.
The Supreme Court has struck down a California law that bans the sale and rental of violent video games to children. In a 7-2 vote, the justices ruled that the law was unconstitutional and that it violated the free speech rights of children.
A federal judge granted a request to block parts of Georgia's immigration law.
The AP reports:
Judge Thomas Thrash on Monday blocked parts of the law that penalize people who transport or harbor illegal immigrants. He also blocked provisions that authorize officers to verify the immigration status of someone who can't provide proper identification.
Cigarette makers must pay to help smokers in Louisiana quit their habit, as the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal by tobacco companies in a landmark class-action case.
By refusing to throw out a $270 million jury award, the high court put an end to a case that began in May 1996, when some 500,000 smokers in Louisiana filed a class-action suit against tobacco companies.
The Los Angeles Dodgers have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Major League Baseball recently nixed a TV deal for the Dodgers that team owner Frank McCourt said would provide financial stability for the team. The bankruptcy filing appears to be a last ditch effort by McCourt to keep baseball from seizing the Dodgers — one of the most storied teams in sports.