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Supreme Court Set to Close Out Current Term With 3 Big Cases

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This Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016 photo shows the Supreme Court building at sunset in Washington. (AP Photo/Jon Elswick)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Supreme Court is set to close out its current term with opinions Monday in three remaining cases after a flurry of decisions last week.

It's expected to be the justices' final meeting before they disperse on their summer breaks.

This photo taken Friday, Oct. 3, 2014, shows the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) This photo taken Friday, Oct. 3, 2014, shows the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The last three cases concern regulation of Texas abortion clinics, the public corruption conviction of former Gov. Bob McDonnell of Virginia and a federal law that seeks to keep guns out of the hands of people convicted of domestic violence.

Protesters on both sides of the abortion issue were in front of the court Monday morning in advance of the decision. Abortion-rights advocates held signs saying, "Keep Clinics Open" and blasted music, including the 1970s song "I'm Every Woman." Anti-abortion demonstrators waved signs saying, "I Am the Pro-life Generation."

Just eight justices are taking part in the cases following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in February. President Barack Obama has nominated federal appeals court Judge Merrick Garland to take Scalia's place, but Garland has not received a hearing or a vote in the Republican-controlled Senate.

U.S. President Barack Obama (L), nominates Judge Merrick B. Garland (R), to the US Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House, March 16, 2016 in Washington, DC. Garland currently serves as the chief judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and if confirmed by the US Senate, would replace Antonin Scalia who died suddenly last month. (Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Late June often is when a retirement is announced, but voluntary departures from the court almost never happen in election years.

The justices handed down five rulings on Thursday, including two cases that ended in 4-4 ties.

A look at the remaining cases:

Abortion

Texas abortion clinics are challenging a state law and regulations that already have cut the number of abortion providers in half, to roughly 20. Fewer than 10 would remain if the 2013 law were allowed to take full effect. One positive sign for the clinics is that only Justices Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan, who generally side with abortion rights advocates, have yet to write opinions from the session in late February and early March when the case was argued. Each justice typically writes at least one majority opinion from each argument session.

Public Corruption

The justices seemed likely to side with McDonnell, who is challenging his conviction for accepting gifts and loans from a wealthy businessman in exchange for promoting a dietary supplement. A ruling for McDonnell could make it harder to prosecute public officials.

Guns

Two men from Maine are challenging their convictions for possessing guns under a federal law that is intended to keep guns out of the hands of people who have previously been convicted of domestic violence.

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