Justiceline: August 16, 2011

Welcome to Justiceline, ThinkProgress Justice’s morning round-up of the latest legal news and developments. Remember to follow us on Twitter at @TPJustice.

  • Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who has placed a significant focus on making the Supreme Court more accessible to lay audiences and even children, will appear on Sesame Street this season.
  • Sauk County District Attorney Patricia Barrett, a Republican, was appointed as the special prosecutor who will decide whether to prosecute Wisconsin Justice David Prosser for allegedly seizing a fellow justice by the neck.
  • An Arkansas judge struck down part of the state’s execution law because it is too permissive in allowing the state to choose which chemicals it will use to kill people.
  • Kevin Drum traces back the history of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s (R) belief that we should repeal the Seventeenth Amendment’s guarantee that voters can elect their senators. Sure enough, it’s the John Birch Society.
  • Reuters takes notice of the fact that Chief Justice Roberts — and not just Justice Kennedy — is in play when the Affordable Care Act reaches the Supreme Court. If Justice Scalia follows his previous decisions, he will also vote to uphold the law in a 7-2 decision, although expecting Scalia to be consistent is always a dangerous game.