posted by Damozel | The justices did not say what had changed their minds," says Washington Post. The Supreme Court has decided (after first deciding otherwise) to hear a case---two consolidated cases really---which "challenge[s] the Bush administration's position that the fates of hundreds of detainees held at the U.S. naval base in Cuba as alleged terrorists is best handled by military tribunals rather than the U.S. courts" (Washington Post) .
I've been combing through various law blogs to see what the lawyers among us have to say about this rethink (which is apparently highly unusual).(The Volohk Conspiracy; see Law.Com & The Wall Street Journal) Says Professor Orrin Kerr, writing at The Volokh Conspiracy, "What's remarkable about this isn't that the Supreme Court agreed to hear them, but that the Court first denied certiorari,...then granted a petition for rehearing." SCOTUSblog states that such a switch may not have occurred since the 1947 case, Hickman v. Taylor, 329 U.S. 495.(SCOTUSblog) Professor Kerr speculates that this extremely unusual re-decision probably indicates that reversal is likely.(The Volohk Conspiracy)
While we can't know why the Court changed its mind, looking at the underlying documents and at the theories suggested by the "blawgs" provides interesting food for thought and speculation.