U.S. Supreme Court

A three story prison dorm with aluminum siding and outside stairs rises behind a barbed wire fence. A guard tower can be seen in the background.

Death penalty critics raise questions about inmate’s pending execution

BY: - November 16, 2023

Before his scheduled execution on Thursday, Casey McWhorter is left to grapple with how his life has played out. On Feb. 19, 1993, McWhorter, then 18, and two other teenagers, aged 15 and 16, decided to rob the Albertville home of Edward Lee Williams. One of the teenagers, Lee Williams, was Edward’s son. McWhorter said […]

A headshot of an inmate.

Gov. Kay Ivey sets January date for nitrogen execution of Kenneth Eugene Smith

BY: - November 8, 2023

Gov. Kay Ivey Wednesday set a January execution date for Kenneth Eugene Smith, convicted of the 1988 murder-for-hire of Elizabeth Sennett. Ivey set an execution window starting at midnight on Jan. 25, 2024 and running until 6 am on January 26, 2024. It could be the first execution carried out through nitrogen suffocation, a method […]

A hand holds a cell door with a white sign saying "Please secure gate."

Alabama death row inmate Casey McWhorter seeks delay of pending execution

BY: - November 7, 2023

Attorneys for an Alabama death row inmate scheduled to face execution a week from Thursday have filed a series of appeals with the Alabama Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court. Attorneys for Casey McWhorter, convicted of capital murder in 1994 for the murder of Edward Lee Williams in 1993, argue that the Nov. 16 […]

Silver letter on the brick says "300 Dexter Avenue. Supreme Court of Alabama. Court of Criminal Appeals. Court of Civil Appeals. State Law Library. Administrative Office of Courts."

Alabama Supreme Court gives go ahead for execution by nitrogen hypoxia

BY: - November 2, 2023

Alabama is one step closer to becoming the first state to execute someone by nitrogen hypoxia. In a 6-2 decision handed down Wednesday, the Alabama Supreme Court allowed the state to proceed with the execution of Kenneth Eugene Smith, convicted of the 1988 murder of Elizabeth Sennett, under that method. Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall […]

The awning of the U.S. Supreme Court features classical figures and the words "Equal Justice Under the Law."

U.S. Supreme Court won’t review Toforest Johnson case

BY: - October 2, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court Monday refused to review the case of Alabama death row inmate Toforest Johnson, whose 1998 murder conviction has drawn criticism from advocates and prosecutors, including a former Alabama attorney general. The justices dismissed Johnson’s petition for a writ of certiorari without comment. Johnson has other appeals pending. “The Supreme Court only […]

A circular state chamber. A window can be seen at the top of the chamber, and seven columns extend across the wall.

Anti-democratic moves by state lawmakers raise fears for 2024 election

BY: - September 23, 2023

In Wisconsin, Republican lawmakers are threatening to impeach both the state’s election administrator, who is highly regarded nationally, and a state Supreme Court justice despite a ruling by the state’s judicial commission that the justice had done nothing wrong — effectively nullifying a recent statewide election she won, Democrats say. In North Carolina, a bill […]

A bag of midazolam, a sedative, used in an IV drip.

In appeal, Alabama attorney general’s office suggests revisiting previous execution cases

BY: - August 28, 2023

Alabama is seeking to overturn a federal court’s decision to spare the life of a death row inmate the court found to be intellectually disabled.  And it may want to go well beyond that. The Alabama attorney general’s office on Aug. 17 asked the U.S. Supreme Court Aug. 17 to reconsider the U.S. 11th Circuit […]

A group of five male representatives seated in a circle and in conversation.

Alabama Legislature passes controversial congressional map

BY: and - July 21, 2023

The Alabama Legislature Friday afternoon approved a congressional map that would lower the percentage of Alabama’s current majority-Black district and create a district in southeast Alabama that would be nearly 40% Black. The proposed map passed the House on a 75-28 vote Friday after it passed the Senate 24-6. Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed the […]

A statue of a seated figure of justice outside the U.S. Supreme Court.

U.S. Supreme Court denies Alabama death row inmate’s appeal

BY: - July 20, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court early Friday morning allowed the scheduled execution of Alabama death row inmate James Edward Barber to go forward, rejecting his arguments that recent botched executions by the Department of Corrections make lethal injection a form of cruel and unusual punishment. The majority in the 6-3 decision did not explain their reasoning. […]

Chair and executive members of committee listen to arguments

Alabama Democratic Party chair wants face-to-face meeting with DNC officials

BY: - July 13, 2023

The chair of the Alabama Democratic Party wants to meet with national party leaders face to face to address complaints about the adoption of new bylaws that abolished or demoted some diversity caucuses in the party. In a letter dated Tuesday and sent to Minion Moore and James Roosevelt, co-chairs of the Rules and Bylaws […]

Vulnerable U.S. House Republicans who opposed student debt plan targeted in 2024

BY: - July 7, 2023

WASHINGTON — Supporters of student loan debt cancellation are organizing to hold GOP lawmakers “accountable” in the 2024 election cycle following the U.S. Supreme Court ruling blocking President Joe Biden’s debt relief plan. The left-leaning Protect Borrowers Action will target 13 U.S. House districts across California, Colorado, Michigan, Nebraska, New York, Oregon and Pennsylvania where […]

Campus diversity will be a struggle without race-based admissions, history shows

BY: - July 6, 2023

States that have tried to enroll more Black and Hispanic students in state universities without using race-based admissions policies have seen the numbers of those students slip — especially at elite institutions. Nine states had affirmative action bans before last week’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling striking it down nationwide. Those states and others have tried […]