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October 4, 2021

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Alabama Solicitor General Testifies Before U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee About Supreme Court Emergency Proceedings

(MONTGOMERY) – Alabama Solicitor General Edmund LaCour Jr. testified Wednesday before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee during a hearing about recent Supreme Court orders in emergency proceedings. Critics of the Court have recently taken to referring to these decisions as part of a “shadow docket.”

Solicitor General LaCour, however, offered testimony explaining that the High Court’s emergency proceedings are neither unusual nor “shadowy.” And he testified that recent emergency-docket decisions that have garnered attention are far more ordinary than the Court’s critics make them out to be.

“CongressÖprovided federal courts with the ability to do something about the emergencies they would unavoidably face,” LaCour told the Committee. “These proceedings hardly warrant such a nefarious name. Requests for preliminary injunctive relief are a critical piece of any court’s business, including federal district courts, courts of appeals, and the Supreme Court.”

Solicitor General LaCour drew on the State’s regular experience litigating emergency matters before the Supreme Court to argue that “the process generally works well for litigants in emergency situations.”

And he explained that the Supreme Court’s decision last month not to intervene in litigation over Texas’s recently enacted abortion law was an entirely ordinary ruling. As LaCour noted, even Justices who argued that the Court should have intervened agreed that the Texas law “raises unprecedented and difficult jurisdictional questions. It thus would have been extraordinary had the Court granted an injunction against the defendants when it was highly doubtful the Court even had authority to act.”

Read Solicitor General LaCour’s testimony here.
Watch video of Solicitor General LaCour’s testimony here.

[For links, click PDF icon at upper right of press release]