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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Decision in Holt v. Hobbs

The result in this RLUIPA case was unsurprising: The petitioner won unanimously.  Justice Alito wrote (again) for the Court, in an opinion holding that "The Department [of Prisons]’s grooming policy violates RLUIPA insofar as it prevents petitioner from growing a 1⁄2-inch beard in accordance with his religious beliefs." Justices Ginsburg and Sotomayor filed short concurrences, solo in Sotomayor's case. The opinions are here. Mazel tov to Professor Doug Laycock, who argued on behalf of petitioner Gregory Holt in the Supreme Court. 

Posted by Paul Horwitz on January 20, 2015 at 10:47 AM in Paul Horwitz | Permalink


Richard Garnett wishes one of the justices responded to Ginsburg's brief concurrence. That's fine. He then addresses things that go further to what the concurrence actually says. I think this is notable and say it here since that post provided no opportunity to post such a response.

Anyway, I think the opinion fine and principle important, but it was honestly a gimmee. As Scalia noted during oral argument & the person hedged on, there very well might be someone with a somewhat longer beard who might have a weaker claim. It sort of goes to the breadth of such claims. Low hanging fruit can be tasty all the same.

Posted by: Joe | Jan 20, 2015 1:37:27 PM

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