Justice Kelly a Maverick? An Update on Fourth Amendment Cases

We now have opinions by two new justices and decisions from three more terms (2014-15 through 2016-17) to add to our initial discussion of Fourth Amendment cases, so it’s time for an update.[1]   A number of recent developments are noteworthy, including the growing portion of the docket devoted to Fourth Amendment cases, which represented a larger percentage of the court’s cases during the past three years than in any other three-year period of the 22 terms under consideration.  As shown in Table 1, the 2016-17 term surpassed all others in this regard, when 18% of the court’s decisions addressed Fourth Amendment arguments, and the second highest figure (15%) was recorded in 2014-15.  In broader perspective, the six highest percentages all came during the last nine terms, when the court’s share of Fourth Amendment cases (10%) doubled the average for the previous 13 terms.[2][Continue Reading…]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1983-1984

These tables are derived from information contained in 118 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions that were turned up in a Lexis search for decisions filed between September 1, 1983, and August 31, 1984.  The total of 118 decisions does not include rulings arising from (1) disciplinary proceedings against lawyers and judges, and (2) various motions and petitions.

In re Judicial Administration: Felony Sentencing Guidelines, a per curiam decision in which the court declined an invitation from the legislature to issue felony sentencing guidelines, is not included in any of the following tables.  This action had no case number, and there was no briefing or oral argument.

The tables are available as a complete set and by individual topic in the subsets listed below.

Four-to-Three Decisions
Decisions Arranged by Vote Split
Frequency of Justices in the Majority
Distribution of Opinion Authorship
Frequency of Agreement Between Pairs of Justices
Average Time Between Oral Argument and Opinions Authored by Each Justice
Number of Oral Arguments Presented by Individual Firms and Agencies


The Voting Records of Justices Crooks and Prosser and Justices Rebecca Bradley and Kelly: Some Comparisons

After a decade and a half of relatively frequent turnover, the supreme court’s membership did not change from 2008-09 through 2014-15.  During these seven terms, the justices were often placed along a spectrum that included two “liberals” (Justices … [Continue reading]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1984-1985

These tables are derived from information contained in 83 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions that were turned up in a Lexis search for decisions filed between September 1, 1984, and August 31, 1985.  The total of 83 decisions does not include rulings … [Continue reading]

The 2016-17 Term: Some More Impressions

Last August, a SCOWstats post examined three aspects of the just-completed 2015-16 term: (1) the number of concurrences and dissents per decision, (2) the number of days between oral argument and decision filing, and (3) the number of pages per … [Continue reading]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 2016-2017

These tables are derived from information contained in 50 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions filed between September 1, 2016, and the end of the court’s term in July, 2017.[1]  The total of 50 decisions does not include the following items contained … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Salutes its Stars

Now that the raucous merriment has subsided following last weekend’s Second Annual Awards Banquet, it’s time to post the season’s final reckoning—and summarize the evening’s highlights for those unable to attend the gala.  For the second year in a … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Update–and Conclusion

With the release of the Supreme Court’s last substantive decisions of the term, we’ve reached the final reckoning of the 2016-17 fantasy-league season.  The Affirmed picked up 10 points from this concluding batch of rulings—5 points from Kasdorf … [Continue reading]

The Supreme Court’s 2016-17 Term: Some Initial Impressions

On July 7, the Supreme Court filed its final three substantive decisions of the term, thereby allowing us to move from speculation to more precise observations about the justices’ activities in areas that we have been tracking. … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Update

This week’s supreme court filings brought joy to neither the league-leading Gavels nor the cellar-dwelling Citations, but the other three teams all scored.  Near the top of the standings, the Affirmed cut into the Gavels’ substantial lead with 5 … [Continue reading]