clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Vox Sentences: The SCOTUS swing vote is retiring

Vox Sentences is your daily digest for what's happening in the world. Sign up for the Vox Sentences newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday, or view the Vox Sentences archive for past editions.

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy is retiring; Poland amends their controversial Holocaust law.


Goodbye, Justice Kennedy

Neil Gorsuch Is Sworn In As Associate Justice To Supreme Court Eric Thayer/Getty Images
  • Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy has announced he will retire at the end of July. Kennedy, 81, was the longest-serving justice on the Supreme Court with 30 years under his belt. [NYT / Michael D. Shear]
  • Kennedy’s resignation has wide-ranging implications for the future of America. A Supreme Court without Kennedy is likely to swing right on abortion, criminal justice, and gay rights. [Vox / Dylan Matthews]
  • President Donald Trump said he plans to replace Kennedy immediately. He will review his list of 25 candidates from the last nomination he made.
  • [USA Today / David Jackson and Jessica Estepa]
  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell intends for the Senate to vote on whoever Trump nominates before the midterm elections. Here are the key senators to watch in these votes. [Vox / Andrew Prokop]
  • Senate Republicans famously refused to confirm a Supreme Court nominee in an election year in 2016, but that apparently makes no difference. [NYT / Nicholas Fandos]
  • Kennedy’s replacement also underscores the importance of midterm elections: Democrats didn’t turn out in 2014, and now conservatives will remake the Supreme Court for a generation. [Vox / Ezra Klein]

You can no longer go to jail for blaming the Holocaust on Poland while in Poland

  • Poland has decriminalized their controversial “Holocaust law.” Previously, anyone who said that Poland was responsible for the Holocaust — in any manner — could face up to three years in jail. [AFP]
  • While the law has been decriminalized, citizens and visitors alike still face fines for accusing Poland of any complicity. [Al Jazeera]
  • The legislation was initially approved to prevent citizens and the media from referring to Nazi concentration camps as “Polish death camps.” [Newsweek / Damien Sharkov]
  • Poland feels the nation ceased to exist under German occupation, during which time 5 million polish people died. In the government’s eyes, Poland is not complicit because any Polish natives that committed war crimes were, instead, Nazis. [BBC / Adam Easton]
  • Critics of the law were concerned that it could prompt an influx of anti-Semitic hate speech and crimes. [NPR / Sasha Ingber]
  • The amendment to the law was prompted by international backlash, including from the US and Israel. [Financial Times / James Shotter and Evon Huber]

Miscellaneous

  • The Cut investigates Big Dick Energy and which celebrities have it. If you’re wondering, Donald Trump does not. [The Cut / Allison P. Davis]
  • The mysterious rock floating through space that people theorized was a UFO has been declared a comet … unless the aliens inside figured out the perfect disguise. [The Verge / Rachel Becker]
  • Model Gigi Hadid was styled as an “illegal” “alien” for a tone-deaf fashion shoot with Moschino. It’s not Gigi’s first race-based offense, and looking at her track record, it will probably not be her last.
  • [Refinery29 / Charlotte Gush]
  • Wildfires are raging across the moors of England. Fifty families have so far evacuated their homes. [The Guardian / Helen Pidd and Kevin Rawlinson]

Verbatim

“There’s no presidential election this year.” [Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell justifying why Justice Kennedy’s replacement should be seated even though Merrick Garland wasn’t / Twitter]


Watch this: Why Americans suck at soccer (well, the men)

Fans, shoutcasters, and eSports icons break down today’s video games and the explosive popularity of competitive gaming. Watch now on Netflix, and tune in for new episodes of Explained each week. [Netflix]


Read more

Polls suggest white evangelicals will still back Trump after family separation controversy

Watch Mexico fans celebrate South Korea after a World Cup miracle

How to fix the Supreme Court

A Stanford psychologist on the art of avoiding assholes

Marijuana legalization is having its best year ever