Supreme Court Strikes Down California Sentencing Scheme:
The Supreme Court handed down its latest decision in the Apprendi/Blakely/Booker line of Sixth Amendment sentencing decisions. The Court's decision, Cunningham v. California, invalidated California's sentencing scheme on the ground that it was too much like the scheme invalidated in Blakely.

  Given the substitution of two Justices since the Booker case, perhaps the most interesting aspect of the decision is the vote line-up. The vote was 6-3, with the Apprendi Five in the majority (of course) joined by Chief Justice Roberts. Ginsburg wrote the majority opinion, and there were no concurrences. Justice Kennedy wrote a short dissent, joined by Justice Breyer, expressing his view that the Blakely Revolution remains a wrong turn and should be construed in a narrower way than the majority prefers. (AMK also cites the recent Blakely article authored by lawprofs Doug Berman and former AMK clerk Stephanos Bibas along the way). Justice Alito also dissented, joined by Kennedy and Breyer, and argued that California's sentencing scheme is indistiguishable from the non-mandatory guidelines approach permitted in Booker.