Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 30 of 31

Full-Text Articles in Law

A Computational Analysis Of Constitutional Polarization, David E. Pozen, Eric L. Talley, Julian Nyarko Jan 2019

A Computational Analysis Of Constitutional Polarization, David E. Pozen, Eric L. Talley, Julian Nyarko

Faculty Scholarship

This Article is the first to use computational methods to investigate the ideological and partisan structure of constitutional discourse outside the courts. We apply a range of machine-learning and text-analysis techniques to a newly available data set comprising all remarks made on the U.S. House and Senate floors from 1873 to 2016, as well as a collection of more recent newspaper editorials. Among other findings, we demonstrate:

(1) that constitutional discourse has grown increasingly polarized over the past four decades;

(2) that polarization has grown faster in constitutional discourse than in non-constitutional discourse;

(3) that conservative-leaning speakers have driven ...


The Single-Subject Rule: A State Constitutional Dilemma, Richard Briffault Jan 2019

The Single-Subject Rule: A State Constitutional Dilemma, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

Critics of the proliferation of omnibus legislation in Congress have suggested that state constitutions offer a potential solution. Forty-three state constitutions include some sort of “single-subject” rule, that is, the requirement that each act of the legislature be limited to a single subject. Many of these provisions date back to the early and mid-nineteenth century, and, collectively, they have been the subject of literally thousands of court decisions. Nor is the rule a relic from a bygone era. In the last two decades, state courts have used single-subject rules to invalidate laws dealing with, inter alia, firearms regulation, abortion, tort ...


Constitutional Law And The Presidential Nomination Process, Richard Briffault Jan 2019

Constitutional Law And The Presidential Nomination Process, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

The Constitution says nothing about the presidential nominating process and has had little direct role in its evolution from congressional caucuses to party national conventions to our current primary-dominated system. Yet, constitutional law is a factor in empowering and constraining the principal actors in the nomination process and in shaping the framework for potential future changes.

The constitutional law of the presidential nomination process operates along two axes: government-party, and state-national. The government-party dimension focuses on the tension between the states and the federal government in writing the rules for and administering the electoral process – which may include the primary ...


New Look Constitutionalism: The Cold War Critique Of Military Manpower Administration, Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2019

New Look Constitutionalism: The Cold War Critique Of Military Manpower Administration, Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

Between 1953 and 1960, the United States’ overall military and intelligence-gathering capacities grew enormously, driven by President Eisenhower’s “New Look” approach to fighting the Cold War. But the distribution of powers within this New Look national-security state, the shape of its institutional structures, and its sources of legitimacy remained up for grabs. The eventual settlement of these issues would depend on administrative constitutionalism – the process by which the administrative state both shapes and is shaped by constitutional norms, often through ostensibly non-constitutional law and policymaking.

Constitutional concerns about civil liberties, administrative procedure, and the separation of powers ran highest ...


Evaluating Constitutional Hardball: Two Fallacies And A Research Agenda, Joseph Fishkin, David E. Pozen Jan 2019

Evaluating Constitutional Hardball: Two Fallacies And A Research Agenda, Joseph Fishkin, David E. Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

This Reply addresses the responses by Professors David Bernstein and Jed Shugerman to our essay Asymmetric Constitutional Hardball. Bernstein's response, we argue, commits the common fallacy of equating reciprocity with symmetry: assuming that because constitutional hardball often "takes two" to play, both sides must be playing it in a similar manner. Shugerman's response, on the other hand, helps combat the common fallacy of equating aggressiveness with wrongfulness: assuming that because all acts of constitutional hardball strain norms of governance, all are similarly damaging to democracy. We suggest that whereas Bernstein's approach would set back the burgeoning effort ...


The Shrinking Constitution Of Settlement, David E. Pozen Jan 2019

The Shrinking Constitution Of Settlement, David E. Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

Professor Sanford Levinson has famously distinguished between the "Constitution of Settlement" and the "Constitution of Conversation." The former comprises those aspects of the Constitution that are clear, well established, and resistant to creative interpretation. The latter comprises those aspects that are subject to ongoing litigation and debate. Although Americans tend to fixate on the Constitution of Conversation, Levinson argues that much of what ails our republic is attributable, at least in part, to the grossly undemocratic and "decidedly nonadaptive" Constitution of Settlement.

This short Article, prepared for a symposium on Levinson's coauthored book Democracy and Dysfunction, explains that the ...


The Challenge Of The New Preemption, Richard Briffault Jan 2018

The Challenge Of The New Preemption, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

The past decade has witnessed the emergence and rapid spread of a new and aggressive form of state preemption of local government action across a wide range of subjects, including inter alia firearms, workplace conditions, sanctuary cities, anti-discrimination laws, plastic bag bans, and menu labeling. Particularly striking are punitive measures that do not just preempt local ordinances but hit local officials or governments with criminal or civil fines, state aid cut-offs, or liability for damages, and broad preemption proposals that would virtually end local initiative over a wide range of subjects. The rise of the new preemption is closely linked ...


Asymmetric Constitutional Hardball, Joseph Fishkin, David E. Pozen Jan 2018

Asymmetric Constitutional Hardball, Joseph Fishkin, David E. Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

Many have argued that the United States' two major political parties have experienced "asymmetric polarization" in recent decades: The Republican Party has moved significantly further to the right than the Democratic Party has moved to the left. The practice of constitutional hardball, this Essay argues, has followed a similar – and causally related – trajectory. Since at least the mid-1990s, Republican officeholders have been more likely than their Democratic counterparts to push the constitutional envelope, straining unwritten norms of governance or disrupting established constitutional understandings. Both sides have done these things. But contrary to the apparent assumption of some legal scholars, they ...


The Search For An Egalitarian First Amendment, Jeremy K. Kessler, David E. Pozen Jan 2018

The Search For An Egalitarian First Amendment, Jeremy K. Kessler, David E. Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

Over the past decade, the Roberts Court has handed down a series of rulings that demonstrate the degree to which the First Amendment can be used to thwart economic and social welfare regulation – generating widespread accusations that the Court has created a "new Lochner." This introduction to the Columbia Law Review's Symposium on Free Expression in an Age of Inequality takes up three questions raised by these developments: Why has First Amendment law become such a prominent site for struggles over socioeconomic inequality? Does the First Amendment tradition contain egalitarian elements that could be recovered? And what might a ...


The Power To Wage War Successfully, Matthew C. Waxman Jan 2017

The Power To Wage War Successfully, Matthew C. Waxman

Faculty Scholarship

A century ago and in the midst of American involvement in World War I, future Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes delivered one of the most influential lectures on the Constitution in wartime. In it he uttered his famous axiom that “the power to wage war is the power to wage war successfully.” That statement continues to echo in modern jurisprudence, though the background and details of the lecture have not previously been explored in detail. Drawing on Hughes’s own research notes, this Article examines his 1917 formulation and shows how Hughes presciently applied it to the most pressing war ...


The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2016

The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

Joseph Fishkin and William Forbath’s book-in-progress, The Anti-Oligarchy Constitution, offers a radical alternative to the constitutional histories that emerged in the 1990s to defend the New Deal synthesis. Fishkin and Forbath’s new constitutional history promises to recast the New Deal as a contingent and incomplete resolution of a centuries-long struggle to achieve the political-economic conditions that the Constitution requires – “requires” in the double sense of “demands” and “depends upon.” This struggle is still ongoing and even accelerating, Fishkin and Forbath report, yet it has become increasingly “one-sided.” First, the post-WWII economic boom dissipated, taking with it much of ...


Constitutional Bad Faith, David E. Pozen Jan 2016

Constitutional Bad Faith, David E. Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

The concepts of good faith and bad faith play a central role in many areas of private law and international law. Typically associated with honesty, loyalty, and fair dealing, good faith is said to supply the fundamental principle of every legal system, if not the foundation of all law. With limited exceptions, however, good faith and bad faith go unmentioned in constitutional cases brought by or against government institutions. This doctrinal deficit is especially striking given that the U.S. Constitution twice refers to faithfulness and that insinuations of bad faith pervade constitutional discourse.

This Article investigates these points and ...


The Power To Wage War Successfully, Matthew C. Waxman Jan 2016

The Power To Wage War Successfully, Matthew C. Waxman

Faculty Scholarship

A century ago and in the midst of American involvement in World War I, future Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes delivered one of the most influential lectures on the Constitution in wartime. It was in that address that he uttered his famous axiom that “the power to wage war is the power to wage war successfully.” That statement continues to echo in modern jurisprudence, though the background and details of the lecture have not previously been explored in detail. Drawing on Hughes’s own research notes, this Article examines his 1917 formulation and shows how Hughes presciently applied it to ...


The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2016

The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

Since the early 1990s, constitutional history has experienced a renaissance. This revival had many causes, but three stand out: the Rehnquist Court's attack on formerly sacrosanct features of the "New Deal agenda"; Reagan-Era reassessments of American political development by political scientists, historians, and historical sociologists; and the frustration of constitutional scholars with the inability of legal process theory or political philosophy to produce "authoritative constitutional principles." Spurred by legal crisis and this mix of disciplinary innovation and stagnation, law professors began to tell new stories about our constitutional heritage. They focused on the sources and significance of the New ...


Constitutional Bad Faith, David Pozen Jan 2015

Constitutional Bad Faith, David Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

The concepts of good faith and bad faith play a central role in many areas of private law and international law. Typically associated with honesty, loyalty, and fair dealing, good faith is said to supply the fundamental principle of every legal system, if not the foundation of all law. With limited exceptions, however, good faith and bad faith go unmentioned in constitutional cases brought by or against government institutions. This doctrinal deficit is especially striking given that the U.S. Constitution twice refers to faithfulness and that insinuations of bad faith pervade constitutional discourse.

This Article investigates these points and ...


Executive Federalism Comes To America, Jessica Bulman-Pozen Jan 2015

Executive Federalism Comes To America, Jessica Bulman-Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

From healthcare to marijuana to climate change, negotiations among federal and state executive branch actors increasingly set national policy in the United States. This executive federalism fits uneasily into existing understandings: it departs from expectations that Congress formulates national policy and mediates state-federal relationships; it poses a challenge to popular suggestions that the president is engaged in unilateral action; and it comes as a surprise to those who have studied executive federalism but insist it is the peculiar province of parliamentary federations. In an age of partisan polarization, congressional gridlock, and state initiative, executive federalism has come to America. After ...


The Administrative Origins Of Modern Civil Liberties Law, Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2014

The Administrative Origins Of Modern Civil Liberties Law, Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers a new explanation for the puzzling origin of modern civil liberties law. Legal scholars have long sought to explain how Progressive lawyers and intellectuals skeptical of individual rights and committed to a strong, activist state came to advocate for robust First Amendment protections after World War I. Most attempts to solve this puzzle focus on the executive branch's suppression of dissent during World War I and the Red Scare. Once Progressives realized that a powerful administrative state risked stifling debate and deliberation within civil society, the story goes, they turned to civil liberties law in order ...


The Duty Of Responsible Administration And The Problem Of Police Accountability, Charles F. Sabel, William H. Simon Jan 2014

The Duty Of Responsible Administration And The Problem Of Police Accountability, Charles F. Sabel, William H. Simon

Faculty Scholarship

Many contemporary civil rights claims arise from institutional activity that, while troubling, is neither malicious nor egregiously reckless. When law-makers find themselves unable to produce substantive rules for such activity, they often turn to regulating the actors’ exercise of discretion. The consequence is an emerging duty of responsible administration that requires managers to actively assess the effects of their conduct on civil rights values and to make reasonable efforts to mitigate harm to protected groups. This doctrinal evolution partially but imperfectly converges with an increasing emphasis in public administration on the need to reassess routines in the light of changing ...


The Administrative Origins Of Modern Civil Liberties Law, Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2014

The Administrative Origins Of Modern Civil Liberties Law, Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers a new explanation for the puzzling origin of modern civil liberties law. Legal scholars have long sought to explain how Progressive lawyers and intellectuals skeptical of individual rights and committed to a strong, activist state came to advocate for robust First Amendment protections after World War I. Most attempts to solve this puzzle focus on the executive branch’s suppression of dissent during World War I and the Red Scare. Once Progressives realized that a powerful administrative state risked stifling debate and deliberation within civil society, the story goes, they turned to civil liberties law in order ...


Federalism As A Safeguard Of The Separation Of Powers, Jessica Bulman-Pozen Jan 2012

Federalism As A Safeguard Of The Separation Of Powers, Jessica Bulman-Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

States frequently administer federal law, yet scholars have largely overlooked how the practice of cooperative federalism affects the balance of power across the branches of the federal government. This article explains how states check the federal executive in an era of expansive executive power and how they do so as champions of Congress, both relying on congressionally conferred authority and casting themselves as Congress’s faithful agents. By inviting the states to carry out federal law, Congress, whether purposefully or incidentally, counteracts the tendency of statutory ambiguity and broad delegations of authority to enhance federal executive power. When states disagree ...


Justice Stevens And The Obligations Of Judgment, David Pozen Jan 2011

Justice Stevens And The Obligations Of Judgment, David Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

How to sum up a corpus of opinions that spans dozens of legal fields and four decades on the bench? How to make the most sense of a jurisprudence that has always been resistant to classification, by a jurist widely believed to have "no discernible judicial philosophy"? These questions have stirred Justice Stevens' former clerks in recent months. Since his retirement, many of us have been trying to capture in some meaningful if partial way what we found vital and praiseworthy in his approach to the law. There may be something paradoxical about the attempt to encapsulate in a formula ...


What Happened In Iowa?, David Pozen Jan 2011

What Happened In Iowa?, David Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

November 2, 2010 is the latest milestone in the evolution of state judicial elections from sleepy, sterile affairs into meaningful political contests. Following an aggressive ouster campaign, voters in Iowa removed three supreme court justices, including the chief justice, who had joined an opinion finding a constitutional right to same-sex marriage. Supporters of the campaign rallied around the mantra, "It's we the people, not we the courts." Voter turnout surged to unprecedented levels; the national media riveted attention on the event. No sitting Iowa justice had ever lost a retention election before.

This essay – a reply to Nicole Mansker ...


Abortion, Equality, And Administrative Regulation, Gillian E. Metzger Jan 2007

Abortion, Equality, And Administrative Regulation, Gillian E. Metzger

Faculty Scholarship

Abortion and equality are a common pairing; courts as well as legal scholars have noted the importance of abortion and a woman's ability to control whether and when she has children to her ability to participate fully and equally in society. Abortion and administrative regulation, on the other hand, are a more unusual combination. Most restrictions on abortion are legislatively imposed, while guarantees of reproductive freedom are constitutionally derived, so administrative law does not frequently figure in debates about access to abortion.


Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2007

Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers an account of how courts respond to social change, with a specific focus on the process by which courts "tip" from one understanding of a social group and its constitutional claims to another. Adjudication of equal protection and due process claims, in particular, requires courts to make normative judgments regarding the effect of traits such as race, sex, sexual orientation, or mental retardation on group members' status and capacity. Yet, Professor Goldberg argues, courts commonly approach decisionmaking by focusing only on the 'facts" about a social group, an approach that she terms 'fact-based adjudication." Professor Goldberg critiques ...


Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2006

Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers an account of how courts respond to social change, with a specific focus on the process by which courts "tip" from one understanding of a social group and its constitutional claims to another. Adjudication of equal protection and due process claims, in particular, requires courts to make normative judgments regarding the effect of traits such as race, sex, sexual orientation, or mental retardation on group members' status and capacity. Yet, Professor Goldberg argues, courts commonly approach decisionmaking by focusing only on the 'facts" about a social group, an approach that she terms 'fact-based adjudication." Professor Goldberg critiques ...


Abortion, Equality, And Administrative Regulation, Gillian E. Metzger Jan 2006

Abortion, Equality, And Administrative Regulation, Gillian E. Metzger

Faculty Scholarship

This symposium essay argues that administrative regulation of abortion and reproductive rights deserve closer study. Administrative regulation of abortion is overwhelmingly health regulation; the focus is on abortion as a medical procedure, and the government's only stated interest is protecting the health of women obtaining abortions. Such regulation is becoming increasingly common, and is worthy of greater attention on that ground alone. But in addition, and of particular relevance to this symposium on reproductive rights and equality, administrative abortion regulation demonstrates the difficulty in successfully challenging abortion restrictions as unconstitutional gender discrimination. Given general medical agreement that early abortions ...


Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2006

Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers an account of how courts respond to social change, with a specific focus on the process by which courts "tip" from one understanding of a social group and its constitutional claims to another. Adjudication of equal protection and due process claims, in particular, requires courts to make normative judgments regarding the effect of traits such as race, sex, sexual orientation, or mental retardation on group members' status and capacity. Yet, Professor Goldberg argues, courts commonly approach decisionmaking by focusing only on the "facts" about a social group, an approach that she terms "fact-based adjudication." Professor Goldberg critiques ...


Morals-Based Justifications For Lawmaking: Before And After Lawrence V. Texas, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2006

Morals-Based Justifications For Lawmaking: Before And After Lawrence V. Texas, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

Forever, it seems, the power to shape public morality has been seen as central to American governance. As one of the morality tradition's chief promoters, the Supreme Court itself has regularly endorsed and applauded government's police power to regulate the public's morality along with the public's health and welfare.

How, then, can we make sense of the Court's declaration in Lawrence v. Texas that the state's interest in preserving or promoting a particular morality among its constituents did not amount even to a legitimate interest to justify a Texas law criminalizing sexual intimacy between ...


Morals-Based Justifications For Lawmaking: Before And After Lawrence V. Texas, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2004

Morals-Based Justifications For Lawmaking: Before And After Lawrence V. Texas, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

Morals-Based Justifications for Lawmaking: Before and After Lawrence v. Texas looks in depth at the dissonance between the Supreme Court's rhetorical support for morals-based lawmaking and the Court's jurisprudence. In taking this approach, the article aims to respond a central post-Lawrence question concerning the continuing vitality of a government's moral agenda as a sufficient justification for restricting individual rights. It turns out, on close review of the cases going back to the mid-1800s, that the Court has almost never relied explicitly on a morals rationale to sustain an allegedly rights-infringing government action.

The article develops several explanations ...


Equality Without Tiers, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2004

Equality Without Tiers, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

Equality Without Tiers offers a comprehensive analysis of tiered equal protection review and argues that the current framework has outlived its utility and functions in many respects as a barrier to equality. As an alternative to the current ossified test, the article develops and tests a single standard of review aimed to provide a more finely calibrated response to the complexities of discrimination in the 21st century.

To support this argument, the article focuses first on tensions in the current tiered framework for equal protection review, pointing to, among others, the Court's variously weak and strong approaches to rational ...