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Circuit Justices

At the end of today's orders list is the "allotment order" specifying the justices assigned as circuit justice for the various circuits.  That assignment means a lot less than it did in the old days, when the circuit justice actually presided over the circuit court.  (E.g., Chief Justice Marshall presiding in the Aaron Burr trial.)  Now it pretty much means ruling on the extension of time and stay requests for cases from the circuit.  Even the more important stay requests, such as capital cases, are routinely referred to the full court for decision.

Anyhow, bad news for Texas defense lawyers -- the extension-stingy Justice Scalia still has the Fifth Circuit.  Former Circuit Judges Roberts, Breyer, Ginsburg, Alito, and Kennedy have the circuits from whence they came (D.C., First, Second, Third, and Ninth, respectively). The Chief also gets the Fourth and Federal, and Justice Alito also gets the Eighth.

Justice Thomas gets the Eleventh, which includes his native Georgia.  Justice Sotomayor gets the Tenth.  The rookie gets the Midwest (Sixth and Seventh).

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