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Supreme Court Repeaters

Posted by on Monday, October 17, 2016 in Articles, Volume 69, Volume 69, Number 5.

Supreme Court Repeaters


A case that receives cert once is special. A case that receives cert twice is truly exceptional. This Article is the first to examine the phenomenon of “Supreme Court Repeaters.” Although Repeaters may seem like mere curiosities, they are actually a valuable part of the Supreme Court’s docket. Our analysis reveals that the Justices use Repeaters in three ways: (1) to set up important substantive questions that could not be addressed on the first pass, (2) to supervise lower courts, and (3) to address different substantive issues that arise at distinct points in litigation. In this Article, we investigate Supreme Court Repeaters from the last ninety years and present our findings.


Jason Iuliano
Associate Research Scholar, Yale Law School; Ph.D. candidate in Politics, Princeton University; J.D., Harvard Law School.

Ya Sheng Lin
B.A. in Politics, Princeton University (expected 2017).