Oral argument: Feb. 22, 2011
Appealed from: United States Court of Appeals for Third Circuit (Sept. 17, 2009)
TENTH AMENDMENT, TREATY POWER, STATE SOVEREIGNTY, STANDING
Petitioner Carol Anne Bond spread chemicals around the home of Myrlinda Haynes to seek revenge for Haynes’s impregnation by Bond’s husband. Bond was charged with several crimes, including use of a chemical weapon under 18 U.S.C. § 229(a)(1). Congress enacted the statute pursuant to the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1993 in order to meet American obligations under the Convention. Bond appealed to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals on several grounds, including a claim that 18 U.S.C. § 299(a)(1) violates the Tenth Amendment because the police power to prosecute criminals is a power reserved to the states. The Third Circuit found that as a private party attempting to claim a violation of state sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment, Bond lacked standing. Bond appealed to the Supreme Court on the issue of her standing. In addition to determining whether private parties have standing to bring suit under the Tenth Amendment, the decision may also impact the scope of Congress’s authority to enact statutes implementing international treaty obligations, and what checks, if any, exist on that power.