Here is some of the press coverage of yesterday's Belmontes decision.
The New York Times site has two stories, one by David Stout yesterday and one by Linda Greenhouse today. The latter offers an explanation for why a 5-4 decision came out so quickly. This case was "relisted" for Supreme Court conferences nine times before certiorari was granted. This indicates that some of the Justices believed the Ninth Circuit decision was so clearly wrong it should be summarily reversed -- no need for briefing and oral argument. That position couldn't quite muster five votes, but the consideration of it no doubt generated extensive memos and possibly a draft opinion and dissent. With the opinions largely written before oral argument and no surprises there, not much remained to be done.
David Savage in the L.A. Times emphasizes the continuing clash between the Supreme Court majority and notorious Ninth Circuit. He also quotes the defense lawyer saying the case would continue on ineffective assistance claims.
Layla Bohm of the Lodi News-Sentinel provides the local perspective, including comments from Steacy McConnell's mother.