Ripeness and Standing “Boil Down to the Same Question”

June 16th, 2014

In a footnote in Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus the Court acknowledged what all FedCourt students already struggle with. Ripeness and standard are hard to separate:

The doctrines of standing and ripeness “originate” from the same Article III limitation. DaimlerChrysler Corp. v. Cuno, 547 U. S. 332, 335 (2006). As the parties acknowledge, the Article III standing and ripeness issues in this case “boil down to the same question.” Med- Immune, Inc. v. Genentech, Inc., 549 U. S. 118, 128, n. 8 (2007); see Brief for Petitioners 28; Brief for Respondents 22. Consistent with our practice in cases like Virginia v. American Booksellers Assn., Inc., 484 U. S. 383, 392 (1988), and Babbitt v. Farm Workers, 442 U. S. 289, 299, n. 11 (1979), we use the term “standing” in this opinion.

In response to a question from Justice Ginsburg during oral argument, Mike Carvin conceded that he can’t “figure out the difference” between standing and ripeness, and would view them as “essentially coextensive.” I think that’s right.