Court to rule on porno, booze

The Supreme Court agreed Monday to tackle two social issues - pornography and booze.

The justices, returning from a month-long recess, agreed to hear cases involving local governments' power to shut down adult bookstores and withhold liquor licenses.

But the high court refused to step into a political battle over congressional reapportionment, leaving a Democratic-sponsored plan for redrawing Illinois House district boundaries intact.

The court agreed to hear an appeal by owners of two Idaho bookstores, contesting a ruling that closed their businesses for a year because a court found that ''lewd publications constitute a principal part of the stock in trade.''

In the liquor case, the justices said they will decide whether a state can give churches the power to veto liquor sales in their neighborhoods. The court will review a Massachusetts zoning law - similar to ones in at least eight other states - that was declared unconstitutional as a violation of the First Amendment's ban against establishment of religion.

- Refused to disturb a ruling - prompted by a conflict over how much pro football is too much - that allows cable television outlets to offer a practically unlimited selection of games.

- Declined to hear arguments over whether Florida's get-tough drug trafficking law - designed to get suspects to ''squeal'' on one another - is constitutional.

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