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Series

Faculty Scholarship

Duke Law

Federal government

Family, Life Course, and Society

Publication Year

Articles 1 - 2 of 2

Full-Text Articles in Law

Federalism As A Way Station: Windsor As Exemplar Of Doctrine In Motion, Neil S. Siegel Jan 2014

Federalism As A Way Station: Windsor As Exemplar Of Doctrine In Motion, Neil S. Siegel

Faculty Scholarship

This Article asks what the Supreme Court’s opinion in United States v. Windsor stands for. It first shows that the opinion leans in the direction of marriage equality but ultimately resists any dispositive “equality” or “federalism” interpretation. The Article next examines why the opinion seems intended to preserve for itself a Delphic obscurity. The Article reads Windsor as an exemplar of what judicial opinions may look like in transition periods, when a Bickelian Court seeks to invite, not end, a national conversation, and to nudge it in a certain direction. In such times, federalism rhetoric—like manipulating the tiers ...


Federalism, Liberty, And Equality In United States V. Windsor, Ernest A. Young, Erin C. Blondel Jan 2013

Federalism, Liberty, And Equality In United States V. Windsor, Ernest A. Young, Erin C. Blondel

Faculty Scholarship

This essay argues that federalism played a profoundly important role in the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Windsor, which struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act. Arguments to the contrary have failed to appreciate how Justice Kennedy's opinion employed federalism not as a freestanding argument but as an essential component of his rights analysis. Far from being a "muddle," as many have claimed, Justice Kennedy's analysis offered one of the most sophisticated examples to date of the interconnections between federalism, liberty, and equality.