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Power Games, Aneil Kovvali Jan 2014

Power Games, Aneil Kovvali

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

According to the traditional account, Congress has the "necessary constitutional means and personal motives to resist encroachments" by the president. As commentators have recognized, however, the traditional account does not match reality. Individuals in Washington, D.C., are more interested in fighting for their political party than for their branch of government, and the essentially reactive legislative branch lacks the capacity to respond to a rapidly changing policy environment. But the traditional account suffers from a more basic flaw. The president can decide whether or not to cooperate with Congress on a situation-by-situation basis. By contrast, Congress's tools for ...


One Redeeming Quality About The 112th Congress: Refocusing On Descriptive Rather Than Evocative Short Titles, Brian Christopher Jones Jul 2013

One Redeeming Quality About The 112th Congress: Refocusing On Descriptive Rather Than Evocative Short Titles, Brian Christopher Jones

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The consensus with regard to the 112th Congress is that it was a massive failure: the Congress passed fewer laws than in previous years, and the contemptuous debates over the debt ceiling and the so-called "fiscal cliff" did not win this Congress many supporters. So what redeeming qualities could have been present in such an irredeemable Congress? I believe that there was at least one: a returning focus on descriptive short titles for laws, rather than a perpetuation of the evocative and tendentious short titles that have been commonplace over the past couple of decades. A recent publication of mine ...


Adoptive Couple V. Baby Girl: Two-And-A-Half Ways To Destroy Indian Law, Marcia A. Yablon-Zug Apr 2013

Adoptive Couple V. Baby Girl: Two-And-A-Half Ways To Destroy Indian Law, Marcia A. Yablon-Zug

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

In December 2011, Judge Malphrus of the South Carolina family court ordered Matt and Melanie Capobianco to relinquish custody of Veronica, their two-year-old, adopted daughter, to her biological father, Dusten Brown. A federal statute known as the Indian Child Welfare Act ("ICWA") mandated Veronica's return. However, the court's decision to return Veronica pursuant to this law incited national outrage and strident calls for the Act's repeal. While this outrage was misplaced, it may nonetheless have influenced the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to hear the appeal. The case of Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl is emotionally ...


Who's Bringing The Children?: Expanding The Family Exemption For Child Smuggling Offenses, Rebecca M. Abel Feb 2012

Who's Bringing The Children?: Expanding The Family Exemption For Child Smuggling Offenses, Rebecca M. Abel

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Under immigration law, an alien smuggling offense takes place when one knowingly encourages, induces, assists, abets, or aids an alien to enter or to try to enter the United States. Committing this offense is cause for either removal or inadmissibility charges under the Immigration and Nationality Act ("INA"). In addition, a federal criminal conviction for alien smuggling under INA section 274(a)(1)(A) or 274(a)(2) classifies the immigrant as an aggravated felon, leading to near certain deportation. Although the INA levies harsh penalties against smugglers, the practice has not showed any signs of slowing. In 2010, the ...


Clarification Needed: Fixing The Jurisdiction And Venue Clarification Act, William Baude Jan 2012

Clarification Needed: Fixing The Jurisdiction And Venue Clarification Act, William Baude

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

One hates to seem ungrateful. Judges and scholars frequently call for Congress to fix problems in the law of jurisdiction and procedure, and Congress doesn't usually intervene. In that light, the Jurisdiction and Venue Clarification Act ("JVCA"),[1] signed into law on December 7, 2011, ought to be a welcome improvement. And hopefully, on balance, it will be. But in at least one area that it attempts to clarify, the JVCA leaves much to be desired. Professor Arthur Hellman has called the JVCA "the most far-reaching package of revisions to the Judicial Code since the Judicial Improvements Act of ...


Toward A System Of Invention Registration: The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, Jason Rantanen, Lee Petherbridge Sep 2011

Toward A System Of Invention Registration: The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, Jason Rantanen, Lee Petherbridge

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The recently enacted Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (“AIA”) represents the most significant legislative event affecting patent law and practice in more than half a century. In addressing the AIA, scholars and policymakers have focused with an almost laser-like exclusivity on the AIA’s imposition of a first-to-file-or-first-to-publicly-disclose system, which replaces an over 200-year-old first-to-invent tradition. This myopia, we suggest, overlooks a part of the AIA that could hold a substantially greater potential to jeopardize American innovation, job creation, and economic competitiveness: the imposition of a mechanism for supplemental examination.


"What Do I Do About This Word, 'Unavoidable'?": Resolving Textual Ambiguity In The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act, Jason Lafond Sep 2010

"What Do I Do About This Word, 'Unavoidable'?": Resolving Textual Ambiguity In The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act, Jason Lafond

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The quote in the title of this Essay comes from Justice Breyer, expressing his frustration with the language of section 22(b)(1) of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act. Justice Breyer made this comment during the October 12, 2010, oral argument in Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, Inc., a case about the availability of state tort claims based on vaccine design defects. The question before the Court was whether that section expressly preempts such claims against vaccine manufacturers "if the injury or death resulted from side effects that were unavoidable even though the vaccine was properly prepared and was accompanied by ...


Establishing A "Due Care" Standard Under The Lacey Act Amendments Of 2008, Rachel Saltzman Sep 2010

Establishing A "Due Care" Standard Under The Lacey Act Amendments Of 2008, Rachel Saltzman

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The Lacey Act was first enacted in 1900 as a narrow measure for domestic bird preservation and agriculture protection. It was significantly amended in 1981 and 1988 to prohibit trafficking in fish and wildlife "taken, possessed, transported, or sold" in violation of state and foreign laws. For the past three decades, the amended statute has provided the federal government with a powerful tool for regulating imports of fish and wildlife. In 2008 Congress expanded its reach still further, responding to widespread concern about the effects of illegal logging on local governance, the environment, and American business by extending the Act ...


Reconstructing The Individual Mandate As An Escrow Account, Gregg D. Polsky Mar 2010

Reconstructing The Individual Mandate As An Escrow Account, Gregg D. Polsky

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The recent health care reform law's most controversial provision is the individual mandate, which imposes a fine on individuals who fail to obtain a minimum level of health insurance coverage. Many object to this policy, arguing that the government shouldn't force individuals to purchase health insurance. Others believe that the mandate is a necessary component to health care reform. What has been missed in the discussion is that Congress could restructure the individual mandate to avoid the requirement that individuals purchase health insurance while still fulfilling its principal function. The principal purpose of the mandate is not to ...


Gina's Genotypes, David H. Kaye Jan 2010

Gina's Genotypes, David H. Kaye

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

In August 2009, the Board of Trustees of the University of Akron added to the university's employment policy the following proviso: "any applicant may be asked to submit fingerprints or DNA sample for purpose of a federal criminal background check." Although the federal government does not do background checks with DNA, the policy is significant because it highlights a largely unexplored feature of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 ("GINA"). Hailed by the late Senator Edward Kennedy as "the first civil rights bill of the new century of life sciences," GINA generally prohibits employers from asking for "genetic ...


The Overlooked Significance Of Arizona's New Immigration Law, Rick Su Jan 2010

The Overlooked Significance Of Arizona's New Immigration Law, Rick Su

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Immigration has once again become the subject of widespread interest and public debate. This renewed interest, however, was not the result of Harry Reid's vow that the Senate will tackle comprehensive immigration reform sometime this year. Nor was it prompted by new policy initiatives with respect to immigration enforcement being implemented by the Department of Homeland Security. Rather, it has been the result of legislative action taken in one state-Arizona. Arizona's move to regulate immigration has predictably raised questions about the proper role of a state with respect to an area dominated by federal legislation. Yet the discussion ...


In Search Of Justice: Increasing The Risk Of Business With State Sponsors Of Terror, Gabriel C. Lajeunesse Jan 2009

In Search Of Justice: Increasing The Risk Of Business With State Sponsors Of Terror, Gabriel C. Lajeunesse

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

If the aims of tort law are deterrence, compensation, and provision of equitable distribution of risks, U.S. anti-terrorism laws have been margin-ally effective at best. Though Congress has passed legislation providing causes of action to U.S. victims of terrorism, compensation of victims is often difficult and terrorists are rarely deterred. Attempts to provide such recourse include the Antiterrorism Act of 1991 ("ATA"), the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA"), and the Flatow Amendment to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act ("FSIA"). These attempts, however, are not enough.


Mccain’S Citizenship And Constitutional Method, Peter J. Spiro Jan 2008

Mccain’S Citizenship And Constitutional Method, Peter J. Spiro

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Many things may obstruct John McCain’s path to the White House, but his citizenship status is not among them. The question of his eligibility, given the circumstances of his birth, has already been resolved. That outcome has been produced by actors outside the courts. . . . If non-judicial actors—including Congress, editorialists, leading members of the bar, and the People themselves—manage to generate a constitutional consensus, there isn’t much that the courts can do about it. In cases such as this one, at least, that seems to be an acceptable method of constitutional determination.


Why John Mccain Was A Citizen At Birth, Stephen E. Sachs Jan 2008

Why John Mccain Was A Citizen At Birth, Stephen E. Sachs

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Senator John McCain was born a citizen in 1936. Professor Gabriel J. Chin challenges this view in this Symposium, arguing that McCain’s birth in the Panama Canal Zone (while his father was stationed there by the Navy) fell into a loophole in the governing statute. The best historical evidence, however, suggests that this loophole is an illusion and that McCain is a “natural born Citizen” eligible to be president.


Originalism And The Natural Born Citizen Clause, Lawrence B. Solum Jan 2008

Originalism And The Natural Born Citizen Clause, Lawrence B. Solum

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The enigmatic phrase “natural born citizen” poses a series of problems for contemporary originalism. New Originalists, like Justice Scalia, focus on the original public meaning of the constitutional text. The notion of a “natural born citizen” was likely a term of art derived from the idea of a “natural born subject” in English law—a category that most likely did not extend to persons, like Senator McCain, who were born outside sovereign territory. But the Constitution speaks of “citizens” and not “subjects,” introducing uncertainties and ambiguities that might (or might not) make McCain eligible for the presidency.


The Justiciability Of Eligibility: May Courts Decide Who Can Be President?, Daniel P. Tokaji Jan 2008

The Justiciability Of Eligibility: May Courts Decide Who Can Be President?, Daniel P. Tokaji

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The 2008 election cycle has been a busy one for legal disputes over the qualifications of presidential candidates, with federal cases having been filed to challenge both major candidates’ eligibility under the “natural born Citizen” clause. These cases unquestionably present vital questions of constitutional law, touching on matters of self-evident national importance. It is doubtful, however, that they are justiciable in lower federal courts. Standing requirements and the political question doctrine make it unlikely that a federal court will reach the merits in cases of the type filed to date.


Why Senator John Mccain Cannot Be President: Eleven Months And A Hundred Yards Short Of Citizenship, Gabriel Chin Jan 2008

Why Senator John Mccain Cannot Be President: Eleven Months And A Hundred Yards Short Of Citizenship, Gabriel Chin

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Article II, section 1 of the Constitution provides that “No Person except a natural born Citizen . . . shall be eligible to the Office of President . . . .” A person must be a citizen at birth to be a natural born citizen. Senator McCain was born in the Canal Zone in 1936. Although he is now a U.S. citizen, the law in effect in 1936 did not grant him citizenship at birth. Because he was not born a citizen, he is not eligible to the office of president.


Now That The Courts Have Beaten Congress To The Punch, Why Is Congress Still Punching The Patent System?, Robert A. Armitage Jan 2007

Now That The Courts Have Beaten Congress To The Punch, Why Is Congress Still Punching The Patent System?, Robert A. Armitage

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The U.S. House of Representatives began September by passing the Patent Reform Act of 2007. This bill, if enacted, would make major changes to U.S. patent law. Given the universally recognized need for improvements to the U.S. patent system, passing a patent reform bill in the House should have been easy. It was not. The Patent Reform Act of 2007 made it through the House only after a spirited debate. There were a host of complaints by House members that the bill was not ready for floor action. In the end, it passed the House by a ...


What Is Dilution, Anyway?, Stacey L. Dogan Jan 2006

What Is Dilution, Anyway?, Stacey L. Dogan

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Ever since the Supreme Court decided Moseley v. V Secret Catalogue, Inc. in 2003, an amendment to the Federal Trademark Dilution Act (“FTDA”) has appeared inevitable. Congress almost certainly meant to adopt a “likelihood of dilution” standard in the original statute, and the 2006 revisions correct its sloppy drafting. Substituting a “likelihood of dilution” standard for “actual dilution,” however, does not resolve a deeper philosophical question that has always lurked in the dilution debate: what is dilution, and how does one prove or disprove its probability? The statutory definition notwithstanding, this issue remains largely unanswered, leaving the courts with the ...


The Trademark Dilution Revision Act Of 2006: A Welcome—And Needed—Change, Dale M. Cendali, Bonnie L. Schriefer Jan 2006

The Trademark Dilution Revision Act Of 2006: A Welcome—And Needed—Change, Dale M. Cendali, Bonnie L. Schriefer

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Some have argued that the changes to the Federal Trademark Dilution Act (the “FTDA”) embodied in the recently enacted Trademark Dilution Revision Act of 2006 (the “TDRA”) threaten to infringe upon the right to free speech. This is simply not the case. The FTDA has always protected First Amendment rights, and the TDRA clarifies and strengthens those protections. While the concept of dilution was introduced in 1927, there was no federal dilution law in the United States until 1995, when Congress passed the FTDA. Since then, various federal courts have reached different conclusions regarding issues such as: (1) what constituted ...


Disparate Impact And The Use Of Racial Proxies In Post-Mcri Admissions, Matthew S. Owen, Danielle S. Barbour Jan 2006

Disparate Impact And The Use Of Racial Proxies In Post-Mcri Admissions, Matthew S. Owen, Danielle S. Barbour

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (“MCRI”) amended the Michigan Constitution to provide that public universities, colleges, and school districts may not “discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of . . . public education.” We argue that, in addition to prohibiting the overt use of racial preferences in admissions, the MCRI also prohibits using racial proxies such as socioeconomic status or a “Ten Percent Plan” that aim to prefer minorities in admissions. Though the MCRI does not expressly say so, we stipulate for this paper ...


A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing: The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative As The Savior Of Affirmative Action, Ryan C. Hess Jan 2006

A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing: The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative As The Savior Of Affirmative Action, Ryan C. Hess

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The University of Michigan has long been a place of important discussions about civil and human rights. On the steps of the Michigan Student Union, only a few paces from the Law School, lies an inconspicuous marker where then-President John F. Kennedy, Jr. dedicated the United States Peace Core. During the Vietnam War, the University played host to significant protests that changed how we think about war and its consequences. Most recently, the University litigated a series of Supreme Court cases that have helped define the role of educational institutions in the quest for equality. This role promises to continue ...


"Framing Affirmative Action", Kimberlé W. Crenshaw Jan 2006

"Framing Affirmative Action", Kimberlé W. Crenshaw

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

With the passage of the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (“MCRI”), Michigan joins California and Washington to constitute the new postaffirmative action frontier. For proponents such as Ward Connerly, affirmative action is on the edge of extinction. Connerly plans to carry his campaign against what he calls “racial preferences” to eight states in 2008, scoring a decisive Super-Tuesday repudiation of a social policy that he portrays as the contemporary face of racial discrimination. On the other side of the issue, proponents of affirmative action are struggling to regroup, fearful that the confluence of lukewarm support among Democratic allies, messy presidential politics ...


What The Mcri Can Teach White Litigants About White Dominance, Adam Gitlin Jan 2006

What The Mcri Can Teach White Litigants About White Dominance, Adam Gitlin

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The ballots have barely been counted, but litigation to enjoin implementation of the now-codified Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (“MCRI”) or at least limit its effect on admissions practices in Michigan’s universities is already underway. One of the primary arguments against the MCRI—and the basis upon which some plaintiff professors assert standing—is that students will suffer an impaired education if current admissions practices are discarded. Assuming that the MCRI survives these legal challenges, educators should be consoled somewhat to know the MCRI may still offer some pedagogy as compensation: litigation will likely be brought to enforce its provisions ...


The Dilution Solution: Populating The Trademark A-List, Scott C. Wilcox Jan 2006

The Dilution Solution: Populating The Trademark A-List, Scott C. Wilcox

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

In our celebrity-conscious culture, the media serve as arbiters of fame. The editors of Us Weekly and People wield significant influence over public recognition of celebrities. Since the Federal Trademark Dilution Act (“FTDA”) amended the Lanham Act in 1995, federal courts have adopted similar roles as arbiters of fame, determining which trademarks are sufficiently famous to receive federal protection against dilution. Recent changes to the Lanham Act, however, reserve the availability of dilution actions to “A-list” marks. These changes fulfill the objectives of trademark law while achieving Congress’s intent in enacting the FTDA.


The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative And The Civil Rights Act Of 1964, Carl Cohen Jan 2006

The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative And The Civil Rights Act Of 1964, Carl Cohen

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

The underlying principle of the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (MCRI), adopted by state wide vote on 7 November 2006, is identical to that of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Section 601 of the Civil Rights Act provides: “No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” The recent passage of the MCRI results now in the inclusion [in Article 1, Section 26 of the Michigan constitution] of section ...


Dilution's (Still) Uncertain Future, Graeme B. Dinwoodie, Mark D. Janis Jan 2006

Dilution's (Still) Uncertain Future, Graeme B. Dinwoodie, Mark D. Janis

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Dilution looked to be a potent weapon when Congress introduced it as § 43(c) of the Lanham Act in 1995. Indeed, some observers feared that it would be too potent (and in some contexts, such as cybersquatting, it successfully augmented traditional causes of action). But a series of court decisions, culminating in the Supreme Court’s 2003 Moseley v. V Secret Catalogue opinion, weakened dilution protection so profoundly that what remained wasn’t of much consequence. Congress has recently sought to breathe new life into dilution law, enacting the Trademark Dilution Revision Act of 2006 (“TDRA”). Some might see this ...