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Full-Text Articles in Law

Jury Selection In The Weeds: Whither The Democratic Shore?, Jeffrey Abramson Oct 2018

Jury Selection In The Weeds: Whither The Democratic Shore?, Jeffrey Abramson

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article reports on four federal jury challenges in which the trial judge or defendants retained the author to provide research on jury selection plans. The research shows a persistent and substantial loss of representation for African Americans and Hispanics on federal juries, even though no intentional discrimination took place. Problems with undeliverable jury summonses, as well as failure to respond to summonses, were the main causes of departures from the ideal of cross-sectional jury selection. However, a cramped understanding of what it takes for a defendant to prove that minority jurors were systematically excluded, as required by Duren v ...


Batson For Judges, Police Officers & Teachers: Lessons In Democracy From The Jury Box, Stacy L. Hawkins Jun 2018

Batson For Judges, Police Officers & Teachers: Lessons In Democracy From The Jury Box, Stacy L. Hawkins

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

In our representative democracy we guarantee equal participation for all, but we fall short of this promise in so many domains of our civic life. From the schoolhouse, to the jailhouse, to the courthouse, racial minorities are underrepresented among key public decision-makers, such as judges, police officers, and teachers. This gap between our aspirations for representative democracy and the reality that our judges, police officers, and teachers are often woefully under-representative of the racially diverse communities they serve leaves many citizens of color wanting for the democratic guarantee of equal participation. This critical failure of our democracy threatens to undermine ...


Defense Counsel And Public Defence, Eve Brensike Primus Nov 2017

Defense Counsel And Public Defence, Eve Brensike Primus

Book Chapters

Public-defense delivery systems nationwide are grossly inadequate. Public defenders are forced to handle caseloads that no one could effectively manage. They often have no funding for investigation or expert assistance. They aren’t adequately trained, and there is little to no oversight of their work. In many jurisdictions, the public-defense function is not sufficiently independent of the judiciary or the elected branches to allow for zealous representation. The result is an assembly line into prison, mostly for poor people of color, with little check on the reliability or fairness of the process. Innocent people are convicted, precious resources are wasted ...


Race And Wrongful Convictions In The United States, Samuel R. Gross, Maurice Possley, Klara Stephens Mar 2017

Race And Wrongful Convictions In The United States, Samuel R. Gross, Maurice Possley, Klara Stephens

Other Publications

African Americans are only 13% of the American population but a majority of innocent defendants wrongfully convicted of crimes and later exonerated. They constitute 47% of the 1,900 exonerations listed in the National Registry of Exonerations (as of October 2016), and the great majority of more than 1,800 additional innocent defendants who were framed and convicted of crimes in 15 large-scale police scandals and later cleared in “group exonerations.” We see this racial disparity for all major crime categories, but we examine it in this report in the context of the three types of crime that produce the ...


Fisher V. Texas: The Limits Of Exhaustion And The Future Of Race-Conscious University Admissions, John A. Powell, Stephen Menendian Jul 2014

Fisher V. Texas: The Limits Of Exhaustion And The Future Of Race-Conscious University Admissions, John A. Powell, Stephen Menendian

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article investigates the potential ramifications of Fisher v. Texas and the future of race-conscious university admissions. Although one cannot predict the ultimate significance of the Fisher decision, its brief and pregnant statements of law portends an increasingly perilous course for traditional affirmative action programs. Part I explores the opinions filed in Fisher, with a particular emphasis on Justice Kennedy’s opinion on behalf of the Court. We focus on the ways in which the Fisher decision departs from precedent, proscribes new limits on the use of race in university admissions, and tightens requirements for narrow tailoring. Part II investigates ...


The Quixtoic Search For Race-Neutral Alternatives, Michael E. Rosman Jul 2014

The Quixtoic Search For Race-Neutral Alternatives, Michael E. Rosman

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The Supreme Court has stated that the narrow-tailoring inquiry of the Equal Protection Clause’s strict scrutiny analysis of racially disparate treatment by state actors requires courts to consider whether the defendant seriously considered race-neutral alternatives before adopting the race-conscious program at issue. This article briefly examines what that means in the context of race-conscious admissions programs at colleges and universities. Part I sets forth the basic concepts that the Supreme Court uses to analyze race-conscious decision-making by governmental actors and describes the role of “race-neutral alternatives” in that scheme. Part II examines the nature of “race-neutral alternatives” and identifies ...


Judicial Independence And Social Welfare, Michael D. Gilbert Feb 2014

Judicial Independence And Social Welfare, Michael D. Gilbert

Michigan Law Review

Judicial independence is a cornerstone of American constitutionalism. It empowers judges to check the other branches of government and resolve cases impartially and in accordance with law. Yet independence comes with a hazard. Precisely because they are independent, judges can ignore law and pursue private agendas. For two centuries, scholars have debated those ideas and the underlying tradeoff: independence versus accountability. They have achieved little consensus, in part because independence raises difficult antecedent questions. We cannot decide how independent to make a judge until we agree on what a judge is supposed to do. That depends on one’s views ...


Yick Wo At 125: Four Simple Lessons For The Contemporary Supreme Court, Marie A. Failinger Apr 2012

Yick Wo At 125: Four Simple Lessons For The Contemporary Supreme Court, Marie A. Failinger

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

The 125th anniversary of Yick Wo v. Hopkins is an important opportunity to recognize the pervasive role of law in oppressive treatment of Chinese immigrants in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It is also a good opportunity for the Supreme Court to reflect on four important lessons gleaned from Yick Wo. First, the Court should never lend justification to the evil of class discrimination, even if it has to decline to rule in a case. Second, where there is persistent discrimination against a minority group, the Court must be similarly persistent in fighting it. Third, the Court needs to take ...


Islam In The Secular Nomos Of The European Court Of Human Rights, Peter G. Danchin Jul 2011

Islam In The Secular Nomos Of The European Court Of Human Rights, Peter G. Danchin

Michigan Journal of International Law

If, with the benefit of hindsight, Mr. Choudhury's case was a harbinger of the emergence of various problems associated with Islam and the rights of Muslim minorities in European nation-states, then the events of September 11, 2001 have propelled these issues to the forefront of law and politics in a way unimaginable even a decade earlier. In Denmark, cartoons depicting the Islamic prophet Muhammad as a suicide bomber have been published leading to protests and violence across Europe and the Islamic world; a law prohibiting students in public schools from wearing symbols or attire through which they conspicuously exhibit ...


When Will Race No Longer Matter In Jury Selection?, Bidish Sarma Jan 2011

When Will Race No Longer Matter In Jury Selection?, Bidish Sarma

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

We are coming upon the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Supreme Court's opinion in Batson v. Kentucky, which made clear that our Constitution does not permit prosecutors to remove prospective jurors from the jury pool because of their race. The legal question in Batson-when, if ever, can governmental race discrimination in jury selection be tolerated?-was easy. The lingering factual question, however-when will prosecutors cease to discriminate on the basis of race?-has proven far more difficult to answer. The evidence that district attorneys still exclude minorities because of their race is so compelling that it is tempting to assume ...


Response To "Snyder V. Louisiana: Continuing The Historical Trend Towards Increased Scrutiny Of Peremptory Challenges", Bidish J. Sarma Oct 2010

Response To "Snyder V. Louisiana: Continuing The Historical Trend Towards Increased Scrutiny Of Peremptory Challenges", Bidish J. Sarma

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

John P. Bringewatt's recent note makes several important observations about the Supreme Court's opinion in Snyder v. Louisiana. Although he provides reasonable support for the claim that Snyder represents a sea change in Batson jurisprudence, the US Supreme Court's fresh opinion in Thaler v. Haynes (rendered on February 22, 2010) reads the Snyder majority opinion narrowly and suggests the possibility that Snyder is not as potent as it should be. The Haynes per curiam's guarded reading of Snyder signals the need for courts to continue to conduct the bird's-eye cumulative analysis that the Court performed ...


The Future Of Disparate Impact, Richard A. Primus Jan 2010

The Future Of Disparate Impact, Richard A. Primus

Articles

The Supreme Court's decision in Ricci v. DeStefano foregrounded the question of whether Title VIl's disparate impact standard conflicts with equal protection. This Article shows that there are three ways to read Ricci, one of which is likely fatal to disparate impact doctrine but the other two of which are not.


Reviving The Right To Vote, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2007

Reviving The Right To Vote, Ellen D. Katz

Articles

Losers in partisan districting battles have long challenged the resulting districting plans under seemingly unrelated legal doctrines. They have filed lawsuits alleging malapportionment, racial gerrymandering, and racial vote dilution, and they periodically prevail. Many election law scholars worry about these lawsuits, claiming that they needlessly "racialize" fundamentally political disputes, distort important legal doctrines designed for other purposes, and provide an inadequate remedy for a fundamentally distinct electoral problem. I am not convinced. This Article argues that the application of distinct doctrines to invalidate or diminish what are indisputably partisan gerrymanders is not necessarily problematic, and that the practice may well ...


Appellate Review Of Racist Summations: Redeeming The Promise Of Searching Analysis, Ryan Patrick Alford Jan 2006

Appellate Review Of Racist Summations: Redeeming The Promise Of Searching Analysis, Ryan Patrick Alford

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This Article addresses the question of the appropriate response of appellate counsel for Black defendants tarred at trial by the indirect deployment of powerful racial stereotypes. The crux of the problem is that even now, the courts only take exception to blatant racist appeals, even though indirectly racist summations can have a determinative impact at trial. In laying out the contours of the problem, we must draw upon the discipline of rhetoric, or persuasion through oration, to describe various techniques of intentional indirectness that prosecutors use to obviate the possibility of appellate review under the stringent standards of the Fourteenth ...


Brennan Center For Justice Symposium Introduction: Diversity, Impartiality, And Representation On The Bench, Kele Williams Jan 2004

Brennan Center For Justice Symposium Introduction: Diversity, Impartiality, And Representation On The Bench, Kele Williams

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

As is evident from these articles, the question of judicial diversity is far more complex and nuanced than the current debate suggests. Many unanswered questions remain. The scholars in this issue and the others who presented their work at our convening have begun to reframe the debate and identify the hardest questions. We hope that this symposium issue will provoke further thought and provide a context for additional scholarship that will help us to answer those questions.


A Principled Approach To The Quest For Racial Diversity On The Judiciary, Kevin R. Johnson, Luis Fuentes-Rohwer Jan 2004

A Principled Approach To The Quest For Racial Diversity On The Judiciary, Kevin R. Johnson, Luis Fuentes-Rohwer

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Part I of this Article considers the different voices and perspectives added to the judiciary by the appointment of minorities. Part II analyzes the many impacts of diversity on the bench, including greater judicial impartiality. Part III sets forth the arguments supporting a diverse jury pool and discusses how they inform the analysis of the quest for racial diversity among judges. Part IV outlines a principled approach to the pursuit of judicial diversity.


Toward An Understanding Of Judicial Diversity In American Courts, Barbara L. Graham Jan 2004

Toward An Understanding Of Judicial Diversity In American Courts, Barbara L. Graham

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Part I of this Article explores the utility of descriptive representation as an important concept in understanding why judicial diversity matters from a political perspective. Part II begins an empirical examination of judicial diversity at the federal level while Part III presents an analysis of state court diversity. The data presented in Parts II and III indicate that judges of color are underrepresented at all levels of the federal and state court systems and that particular racial and ethnic groups are virtually excluded from federal and state benches. The conclusion argues that the data presented in this Article support a ...


In The Supreme Court Of The United States Barbara Grutter, Petitioner, V. Lee Bollinger, Et Al., Respondents. On Writ Of Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit, Jerome S. Hirsch, Joseph N. Sacca, Scott D. Musoff, Mark Lebovitch, Linda M. Wayner Jan 2003

In The Supreme Court Of The United States Barbara Grutter, Petitioner, V. Lee Bollinger, Et Al., Respondents. On Writ Of Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit, Jerome S. Hirsch, Joseph N. Sacca, Scott D. Musoff, Mark Lebovitch, Linda M. Wayner

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Brief of the University of Michigan Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, the University of Michigan Black Law Students' Alliance, the University of Michigan Latino Law Students Association, and the University of Michigan Native American Law Students Association as Amici Curiae in Support of Respondents


The State Judiciary's Role In Fulfilling Brown's Promise, Quentin A. Palfrey Jan 2002

The State Judiciary's Role In Fulfilling Brown's Promise, Quentin A. Palfrey

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

After a brief overview of school finance litigation since Rodriguez and school desegregation cases since Brown, Part I argues that the "adequacy" model of reform addresses many of the underlying concerns of the equity model without sharing its methodological and strategic shortcomings. Part II focuses in more detail on Campaign for Fiscal Equity v. State ("CFE"). Part III argues that education reform that is implemented after a finding that a state has violated a state constitutional duty should: (1) equalize funding to the extent necessary to guarantee certain minimum necessary inputs such as qualified teachers, small class sizes, adequate physical ...


Federalism, Preclearance, And The Rehnquist Court, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2001

Federalism, Preclearance, And The Rehnquist Court, Ellen D. Katz

Articles

Lopez v. Monterey County is an odd decision. Justice O'Connor's majority opinion easily upholds the constitutionality of a broad construction of section 5 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) in language reminiscent of the Warren Court. Acknowledging the "substantial 'federalism costs" resulting from the VRA's "federal intrusion into sensitive areas of state and local policymaking," Lopez recognizes that the Reconstruction Amendments "contemplate" this encroachment into realms "traditionally reserved to the States." Justice O'Connor affirms as constitutionally permissible the infringement that the section 5 preclearance process "by its nature" effects on state sovereignty, and applies section 5 ...


What Will Diversity On The Bench Mean For Justice?, Theresa M. Beiner Jan 1999

What Will Diversity On The Bench Mean For Justice?, Theresa M. Beiner

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This article is aimed at the general question: whether having a woman judge would make a difference in sexual harassment cases. This article is aimed at this general question, the response to which has been elusive: Does the race, gender, or other background characteristics of a judge make a difference in the outcome of cases? The effects of diversity on the bench are just becoming measurable. Many legal scholars have assumed diversity will make a difference. While this conclusion may seem commonsensical, it is important to be able to support such assertions with actual data. The supposition has been that ...


Foxes Guarding The Chicken Coop: Intervention As Of Right And The Defense Of Civil Rights Remedies, Alan Jenkins Jan 1999

Foxes Guarding The Chicken Coop: Intervention As Of Right And The Defense Of Civil Rights Remedies, Alan Jenkins

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

This article focuses on the recent spate of cases in which educational institutions on the grounds that their race-conscious admissions policies are unconstitutional. The author analyzes the role of minority students and organizations who are the beneficiaries of those polices at the defendant institutions and their recent attempts to intervene in the lawsuits pursuant to Rule 24 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. First, the author argues that under the traditional interpretation of Rule 24(a); intervention of right should be granted to minority students and organizations in the great majority of instances. Second, the author looks at the ...


"What's So Magic[Al] About Black Women?" Peremptory Challenges At The Intersection Of Race And Gender, Jean Montoya Jan 1996

"What's So Magic[Al] About Black Women?" Peremptory Challenges At The Intersection Of Race And Gender, Jean Montoya

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article addresses the evolving constitutional restraints on the exercise of peremptory challenges in jury selection. Approximately ten years ago, in the landmark case of Batson v. Kentucky, the United States Supreme Court held that the Equal Protection Clause forbids prosecutors to exercise race-based peremptory challenges, at least when the excluded jurors and the defendant share the same race. Over the next ten years, the Court extended Batson's reach.


Postconviction Review Of Jury Discrimination: Measuring The Effects Of Juror Race On Jury Decisions, Nancy J. King Oct 1993

Postconviction Review Of Jury Discrimination: Measuring The Effects Of Juror Race On Jury Decisions, Nancy J. King

Michigan Law Review

In Part I, I review the empirical evidence concerning the effect of jury discrimination on jury decisions. Using the work of social and cognitive psychologists, I argue that the influence of jury discrimination on jury decisions is real and can be measured by judges in certain circumstances. The empirical studies suggest criteria that courts could use to identify the cases in which jury discrimination is most likely to affect the verdict. I also refute the argument that white judges can never predict the behavior of jurors of racial backgrounds different than their own and conclude that judicial estimates of the ...


State Responses To Task Force Reports On Race And Ethnic Bias In The Courts, Suellyn Scarnecchia Jan 1993

State Responses To Task Force Reports On Race And Ethnic Bias In The Courts, Suellyn Scarnecchia

Articles

While several states have embarked on studies of race and ethnic bias in their courts, Minnesota is only the sixth to publish its report to date. As Minnesota joins the ranks of states with published reports, it is worthwhile to assess the impact of the five earlier published reports from other states. Final reports have been published in Michigan (1989), Washington (1990), New York (1991), Florida (1991) and New Jersey (1992). The published reports make findings and provide several specific recommendations for change. This article will review the published findings and recommendations of the task forces and will discuss the ...


Courts And Cultural Distinctiveness, Marie R. Deveney Jun 1992

Courts And Cultural Distinctiveness, Marie R. Deveney

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The claim that minority ethnic and religious groups are culturally distinct from the dominant society is often, either implicitly or explicitly, a key element of demands these groups make to courts and legislatures for accommodation of their needs. In such cases, the decision maker's understanding of what constitutes "cultural distinctiveness" is crucial, for it can strongly influence the outcome of the accommodation question. In this brief Essay related to Peter Welsh's and Joseph Carens's papers and Dean Suagee's remarks delivered at the Preservation of Minority Cultures Symposium, I contrast these panelists' subtle and sophisticated understandings of ...


Accelerating Integration : Effective Remedies In Public Housing Discrimination Suits, Adam M. Shayne Jan 1990

Accelerating Integration : Effective Remedies In Public Housing Discrimination Suits, Adam M. Shayne

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Note examines the different remedies employed by judges to integrate public housing and recommends a standard approach for courts to employ in the future. Part I describes the status of local and federal public housing policy in the United States. Part II examines litigation aimed at achieving the integration of public housing. This Part details short-term remedies employed by judges in several cities and long-term integration efforts by the courts in two cities: Chicago, Illinois, and Yonkers, New York. The Chicago and Yonkers suits exemplify the major obstacles that plaintiffs and judges face in developing appropriate measures to integrate ...


Scholars' Reply To Professor Fried, Yale Kamisar, Lee C. Bollinger, Judith C. Areen, Barbara A. Black Jan 1989

Scholars' Reply To Professor Fried, Yale Kamisar, Lee C. Bollinger, Judith C. Areen, Barbara A. Black

Articles

As Solicitor General of the United States, Charles Fried, like any good advocate, was often in the position of attempting to generate broad holdings from relatively narrow and particularistic Supreme Court decisions. This was especially true in affirmative action cases. There, the Department of Justice argued that cautious precedents actually stood for the broad proposition that measures designed to put members of disadvantaged groups on a plane of equality should, for constitutional purposes, be treated the same as measures intended to stigmatize or subordinate them. The Supreme Court, however, has consistently rejected this reading of its precedents and the broad ...


Attacking The Judicial Protection Of Minority Rights: The History Ploy, John E. Nowak Apr 1986

Attacking The Judicial Protection Of Minority Rights: The History Ploy, John E. Nowak

Michigan Law Review

A Review of Disabling America: The "Rights Industry" in Our Time by Richard E. Morgan


The Distrust Of Politics, Terrance Sandalow Jan 1981

The Distrust Of Politics, Terrance Sandalow

Articles

In this Article, Dean Sandalow considers the justifications advanced by those who favor the removal of certain political issues from the political process by extending the reach of judicial review. He begins by examining the distrust of politics in a different context, discussing the proposals made by the Progressives for reforming municipal government, as a vehicle to expose the assumptions underlying the current debate. His comparison of the two historical settings reveals many similarities between the Progressives' reform proposals and the contemporary justiflcations.[or the displacement of politics with constitutional law. Dean Sandalow concludes that the distrust of politics rests ...