Nevada v Jackson: The Supreme Court Really Means AEDPA Deference

Reversing the Ninth Circuit, the US Supreme Court stated that a state court acts unreasonably only if there is U.S. Supreme Court decision directly adverse to the ruling of the state court. In Jackson, the trial court excluded evidence that a Complainant had made unsubstantiated allegations of sexual assault against the defendant in the past. The Nevada Supreme Court had previously ruled that such evidence of the falsity of the prior statement is inadmissible where the only evidence is “extrinsic.” The Ninth Circuit relying on U.S. Supreme Court rulings as interpreted by Ninth Circuit rulings found the ruling objectively unreasonable. The U.S. Supreme Court stated that appellate courts should not use their own rulings as a clarifying gloss. This means that the Attorney Generals throughout the country may use lower court rulings to demonstrate the reasonability of the state court rulings, but the defense may not do the contra. Heads they win; tails we lose. Nevada v. Jackson, No. 12–694, 569 U. S. ____ (2013).