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Challenges to the power of the president, Congress and the judiciary, from Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to state death rows, will provide early drama and potential landmark rulings in the new term of the still-evolving Roberts Court. By the end of last term, the high court had agreed to hear arguments in only 28 cases. That amount is well behind the number of certiorari grants in prior terms and is insufficient to fill the court’s argument calendars through December. But the number should increase after the justices hold their summer conference on Sept. 24, when they go through more than a thousand petitions seeking their review. No theme has appeared in the cases on the court’s docket, but there is potential for drama as the views of the court’s newest justices � Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. � continue to be revealed in new areas of the law. High court is set for high drama Marcia Coyle / Staff reporter Even if the justices had agreed to decide only the two cases involving the tension between Congress’ Military Commissions Act of 2006, governing treatment of Guantánamo detainees, and the judiciary’s federal habeas corpus jurisdiction, those cases likely would be enough to make the term stand out in court history books. But the court is also promising to tackle such hot-button issues as the crack-cocaine sentencing disparity, the First Amendment implications of state election systems, and the power of the president to require states to comply with international treaty obligations. Another big year for business at the high court Marcia Coyle / Staff reporter The nation’s business community experienced a banner year in the Roberts Court last term. Was it a one-term stand or the start of a long-term relationship? Though there are relatively few cases on the docket so far, the new term already has slotted for decision key challenges involving securities, pre-emption, arbitration, tax, employment and other areas. Thomas’ new book sparks rampant speculation Tony Mauro / Legal Times On the first Monday in October, the event that will put the U.S. Supreme Court into the headlines won’t be the opening of its fall term but the publication of Justice Clarence Thomas’ long-awaited autobiography. Few advance copies are in circulation and remarkably little is known about the book, encouraging rampant speculation about its contents � especially about what Thomas may reveal about his past with Anita Hill.

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