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The Quantum Of Suspicion Needed For An Exigent Circumstances Search, Kit Kinports Jan 2019

The Quantum Of Suspicion Needed For An Exigent Circumstances Search, Kit Kinports

Journal Articles

For decades, the United States Supreme Court opinions articulating the standard of exigency necessary to trigger the exigent circumstances exception to the Fourth Amendment's warrant requirement have been maddeningly opaque and confusing. Some cases require probable cause, others call for reasonable suspicion, and still others use undefined and unhelpful terms such as "reasonable to believe" in describing how exigent the situation must be to permit the police to proceed without a warrant. Nor surprisingly, the conflicting signals coming from the Supreme Court have led to disagreement in the lower courts.

To resolve this conflict and provide guidance to law ...


The Constitutionalization Of Fatherhood, Dara Purvis Jan 2019

The Constitutionalization Of Fatherhood, Dara Purvis

Journal Articles

Beginning in the 1970s, the Supreme Court heard a series of challenges to family law statutes brought by unwed biological fathers, questioning the constitutionality of laws that treated unwed fathers differently than unwed mothers. The Court’s opinions created a starkly different constitutional status for unwed fathers than for unwed mothers, demanding additional actions and relationships before an unwed father was considered a constitutional father. Although state parentage statutes have progressed beyond their 1970s incarnations, the doctrine created in those family law cases continues to have impact far beyond family law. Transmission of citizenship in the context of immigration law ...


The Theory And Practice Of Contestatory Federalism, James A. Gardner Dec 2018

The Theory And Practice Of Contestatory Federalism, James A. Gardner

Journal Articles

Madisonian theory holds that a federal division of power is necessary to the protection of liberty, but that federalism is a naturally unstable form of government organization that is in constant danger of collapsing into either unitarism or fragmentation. Despite its inherent instability, this condition may be permanently maintained, according to Madison, through a constitutional design that keeps the system in equipoise by institutionalizing a form of perpetual contestation between national and subnational governments. The theory, however, does not specify how that contestation actually occurs, and by what means.

This paper investigates Madison’s hypothesis by documenting the methods actually ...


Special Justifications, Randy J. Kozel Oct 2018

Special Justifications, Randy J. Kozel

Journal Articles

The Supreme Court commonly asks whether there is a “special justification” for departing from precedent. In this Response, which is part of a Constitutional Commentary symposium on Settled Versus Right: A Theory of Precedent, I examine the existing law of special justifications and describe its areas of uncertainty. I also compare the Court’s current doctrine with a revised approach to special justifications designed to separate the question of overruling from deeper disagreements about legal interpretation. The aspiration is to establish precedent as a unifying force that enhances the impersonality of the Court and of the law, promoting values the ...


The Security Court, Matthew J. Steilen Sep 2018

The Security Court, Matthew J. Steilen

Journal Articles

The Supreme Court is concerned not only with the limits of our government’s power to protect us, but also with how it protects us. Government can protect us by passing laws that grant powers to its agencies or by conferring discretion on the officers in those agencies. Security by law is preferable to the extent that it promotes rule of law values—certainty, predictability, uniformity, and so on—but, security by discretion is preferable to the extent that it gives government the room it needs to meet threats in whatever form they present themselves. Drawing a line between security ...


Active Judicial Governance, James A. Gardner Sep 2018

Active Judicial Governance, James A. Gardner

Journal Articles

Evidence marshaled in a new article by Jonathan Marshfield suggests strongly that unlike judges of U.S. federal courts, judges of American state supreme courts both recognize and embrace their role as active participants in the process of indirect popular self-rule. Consequently, they much more willingly serve as active and self-conscious vectors of governance. This is not to say that state judges lack appropriate judicial humility; it is to say merely that they possess a different and more nuanced understanding of the role of courts in American government than some of their federal counterparts.


Unusual: The Death Penalty For Inadvertent Killing, Guyora Binder, Brenner Fissell, Robert Weisberg Jul 2018

Unusual: The Death Penalty For Inadvertent Killing, Guyora Binder, Brenner Fissell, Robert Weisberg

Journal Articles

Can a burglar who frightens the occupant of a house, causing a fatal heart attack, be executed? More generally, does the Eighth Amendment permit capital punishment of one who causes death inadvertently? This scenario is possible in the significant minority of American jurisdictions that permit capital punishment for felony murder without requiring a mental state of intent to kill or reckless indifference to human life. Thus far, Eighth Amendment death penalty jurisprudence has required a culpable mental state of recklessness for execution of accomplices in a fatal felony, but has not yet addressed the culpability required for execution of the ...


How To Think Constitutionally About Prerogative: A Study Of Early American Usage, Matthew J. Steilen May 2018

How To Think Constitutionally About Prerogative: A Study Of Early American Usage, Matthew J. Steilen

Journal Articles

This Article challenges the view of “prerogative” as a discretionary authority to act outside the law. For seventy years, political scientists, lawyers and judges have drawn on John Locke’s account of prerogative in the Second Treatise, using it to read foundational texts in American constitutional law. American writings on prerogative produced between 1760 and 1788 are rarely discussed (excepting The Federalist), though these materials exist in abundance. Based on a study of over 700 of these texts, including pamphlets, broadsides, letters, essays, newspaper items, state papers, and legislative debates, this Article argues that early Americans almost never used “prerogative ...


Secret Law, Jonathan Manes Apr 2018

Secret Law, Jonathan Manes

Journal Articles

The law cannot be a secret hidden from the public. This proposition strikes most of us as uncontroversial—a basic premise of any legal order committed to democratic accountability and the rule of law. Yet in this country secret law not only exists, but has become an entrenched feature of contemporary national security governance. From NSA surveillance to terrorist watch lists to targeted killings, the most controversial national security programs of our time have all been governed by secret rules, secret directives, and secret legal interpretations.

This Article sheds new light on this deeply unsettling state of affairs. It pushes ...


Characterizing Constitutional Inputs, Michael Coenen Jan 2018

Characterizing Constitutional Inputs, Michael Coenen

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


The Death Penalty As Incapacitation, Marah S. Mcleod Jan 2018

The Death Penalty As Incapacitation, Marah S. Mcleod

Journal Articles

Courts and commentators give scant attention to the incapacitation rationale for capital punishment, focusing instead on retribution and deterrence. The idea that execution may be justified to prevent further violence by dangerous prisoners is often ignored in death penalty commentary. The view on the ground could not be more different. Hundreds of executions have been premised on the need to protect society from dangerous offenders. Two states require a finding of future dangerousness for any death sentence, and over a dozen others treat it as an aggravating factor that turns murder into a capital crime.

How can courts and commentators ...


Precedent And Constitutional Structure, Randy J. Kozel Jan 2018

Precedent And Constitutional Structure, Randy J. Kozel

Journal Articles

The Constitution does not talk about precedent, at least not explicitly, but several of its features suggest a place for deference to prior decisions. It isolates the judicial function and insulates federal courts from official and electoral control, promoting a vision of impersonality and continuity. It charges courts with applying a charter that is vague and ambiguous in important respects. And it was enacted at a time when prominent thinkers were already discussing the use of precedent to channel judicial discretion. Taken in combination, these features make deference to precedent a sound inference from the Constitution’s structure, text, and ...


Reconstructing An Administrative Republic, Jeffrey A. Pojanowski Jan 2018

Reconstructing An Administrative Republic, Jeffrey A. Pojanowski

Journal Articles

The book Constitutional Coup, by Professor Jon D. Michaels, offers a learned, lucid, and important argument about the relationship between privatization, constitutional structure, and public values in administrative governance. In particular, Michaels argues that the press toward privatization in this domain poses a serious threat to the United States' separation of powers and the public interest. This review essay introduces readers to Michaels' argument and then raises two questions: First, it asks whether Michaels’ method of constitutional interpretation and doctrinal analysis accelerate the trend toward privatization and consolidation of power in agency heads, the very evils he seeks to avoid ...


Bringing Brown V. Board Of Education Out Of Retirement, Angela Mae Kupenda Jan 2018

Bringing Brown V. Board Of Education Out Of Retirement, Angela Mae Kupenda

Journal Articles

The decision in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education, turns 65 years old in 2019. While 65 is considered to be a normal retirement age, Brown was retired many years ago while it was still just a toddler. As a result, Brown never became all that it could be. Now as Brown turns 65, it is (past) time to bring Brown out of its early, premature retirement. The primary purpose of this commentary is to encourage other professors to think, too, on what we can do individually, and what we must do collectively, to ...


Why Federal Courts Apply The Law Of Nations Even Though It Is Not The Supreme Law Of The Land, Anthony J. Bellia, Bradford R. Clark Jan 2018

Why Federal Courts Apply The Law Of Nations Even Though It Is Not The Supreme Law Of The Land, Anthony J. Bellia, Bradford R. Clark

Journal Articles

We are grateful to the judges and scholars who participated in this Symposium examining our book, The Law of Nations and the United States Constitution. One of our goals in writing this book was to reinvigorate and advance the debate over the role of customary international law in U.S. courts. The papers in this Symposium advance this debate by deepening understandings of how the Constitution interacts with customary international law. Our goal in this Article is to address two questions raised by this Symposium that go to the heart of the status of the law of nations under the ...


Canadian Federalism In Design And Practice: The Mechanics Of A Permanently Provisional Constitution, James A. Gardner Dec 2017

Canadian Federalism In Design And Practice: The Mechanics Of A Permanently Provisional Constitution, James A. Gardner

Journal Articles

This paper examines the interaction between constitutional design and practice through a case study of Canadian federalism. Focusing on the federal architecture of the Canadian Constitution, the paper examines how subnational units in Canada actually compete with the central government, emphasizing the concrete strategies and tactics they most commonly employ to get their way in confrontations with central authority. The evidence affirms that constitutional design and structure make an important difference in the tactics and tools available to subnational units in a federal system, but that design is not fully constraining: there is considerable evidence of extraconstitutional innovation and improvisation ...


More Restrictive Alternatives, Michael Coenen Dec 2017

More Restrictive Alternatives, Michael Coenen

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


The Case Against Oral Argument: The Effects Of Confirmation Bias On The Outcome Of Selected Cases In The Seventh Circuit Court Of Appeals, Christine M. Venter Oct 2017

The Case Against Oral Argument: The Effects Of Confirmation Bias On The Outcome Of Selected Cases In The Seventh Circuit Court Of Appeals, Christine M. Venter

Journal Articles

Scholars have long been divided over the role, function, and significance, if any, of oral argument in judicial decision-making.' Federal courts seem similarly divided, as some circuits routinely grant oral argument in almost every case, while others grant oral argument in only a small fraction of appeals. This divide should not be dismissed as merely an idiosyncratic debate or as a response to excessive workload, particularly when one considers that approximately 53,000 appeals were filed in federal courts of appeals in the year ending September 30, 2016.2 Since the Supreme Court grants certiorari in only approximately eighty cases ...


Precedent And Speech, Randy J. Kozel Feb 2017

Precedent And Speech, Randy J. Kozel

Journal Articles

The U.S. Supreme Court has shown a notable willingness to reconsider its First Amendment precedents. In recent years the Court has departed from its prior statements regarding the constitutional value of false speech. It has revamped its process for identifying categorical exceptions to First Amendment protection. It has changed its position on corporate electioneering and aggregate campaign contributions. In short, it has revised the ground rules of expressive freedom in ways both large and small.

The Court generally describes its past decisions as enjoying a presumption of validity through the doctrine of stare decisis. This Article contends that within ...


Why The Late Justice Scalia Was Wrong: The Fallacies Of Constitutional Textualism, Ken Levy Jan 2017

Why The Late Justice Scalia Was Wrong: The Fallacies Of Constitutional Textualism, Ken Levy

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


State Action Doctrine And The Logic Of Constitutional Containment, Jud Mathews Jan 2017

State Action Doctrine And The Logic Of Constitutional Containment, Jud Mathews

Journal Articles

Deriding the state action doctrine is one of the great pastimes of American constitutional law. It has been described as a shamble and "incoherent." On its face, the core concept seems straightforward enough constitutional rights are rights against the government. But what counts as the "state action" that triggers the protection of rights seems to shift, maddeningly, from case to case in the Supreme Court's state action jurisprudence.

In this article, I aim to help make some sense of why the state action doctrine has developed as it has by setting it in a comparative and historical frame. It ...


Who Are The Punishers, Raff Donelson Jan 2017

Who Are The Punishers, Raff Donelson

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


Constitutional Economic Justice: Structural Power For "We The People", Martha T. Mccluskey Jan 2017

Constitutional Economic Justice: Structural Power For "We The People", Martha T. Mccluskey

Journal Articles

Toward that goal, this essay proposes a structural principle of collective economic power for “we the people.” This principle is both consistent with longstanding Constitutional ideals and tailored to the current challenges of neoliberal ideology and policy. It develops two premises: first, it rejects the neoliberal economic ideology that defines legitimate power and freedom as individualized “choice” constrained by an existing political economy. Instead, this proposed principle recognizes that meaningful political economic freedom and power fundamentally consist of access to collective organizations with potential to create a “more perfect union” with better and less constrained options. Second, the post-Lochner principle ...


Countering The Majoritarian Difficulty, Amy Coney Barrett Jan 2017

Countering The Majoritarian Difficulty, Amy Coney Barrett

Journal Articles

In Our Republican Constitution, Randy Barnett argues that the United States Constitution rests on a foundation of individual rather than collective popular sovereignty. Grounding the legitimacy of the government in the authority given it by each individual rather than by the People as a whole echoes the thesis, advanced in Barnett’s prior work, that the government must justify incursions upon individual liberty. If the People as a body are sovereign and the Constitution is designed to facilitate democratic self-governance, legislation is presumptively legitimate because it represents the sovereign will of the democratic majority. If the individual is sovereign, by ...


Inside The 'Constitutional Revolution' Of 1937, Barry Cushman Jan 2017

Inside The 'Constitutional Revolution' Of 1937, Barry Cushman

Journal Articles

The nature and sources of the New Deal Constitutional Revolution are among the most discussed and debated subjects in constitutional historiography. Scholars have reached significantly divergent conclusions concerning how best to understand the meaning and the causes of constitutional decisions rendered by the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes. Though recent years have witnessed certain refinements in scholarly understandings of various dimensions of the phenomenon, the relevant documentary record seemed to have been rather thoroughly explored. Recently, however, a remarkably instructive set of primary sources has become available. For many years, the docket books kept by a number ...


Justice Scalia, The Nondelegation Doctrine, And Constitutional Argument, William K. Kelley Jan 2017

Justice Scalia, The Nondelegation Doctrine, And Constitutional Argument, William K. Kelley

Journal Articles

Justice Antonin Scalia wrote two major opinions considering the nondelegation doctrine. In Whitman v. American Trucking Associations, he accepted and applied a very broad, indeed virtually unlimited, view of Congress's power to delegate authority to administrative agencies that was consistent with the Court's precedents since the New Deal. In his dissent in Mistretta v. United States, however, he concluded that the constitutional structure formally barred the delegation of naked rulemaking power to an agency that was untethered to other law execution tasks. This essay analyzes Justice Scalia's nondelegation jurisprudence in light of the general jurisprudential commitments he ...


Justice Scalia, Implied Rights Of Action, And Historical Practice, Anthony J. Bellia Jan 2017

Justice Scalia, Implied Rights Of Action, And Historical Practice, Anthony J. Bellia

Journal Articles

In the realm of Federal Courts, the question of “implied rights of action” asks when, if ever, may a plaintiff bring a federal right of action for the violation of a federal statute that does not expressly create one. Justice Scalia argued that a court should not entertain an action for damages for the violation of a federal statute unless the text of the statute demonstrates that Congress meant to create a right of action. The Supreme Court adopted this approach in 2001 in Alexander v. Sandoval, with Justice Scalia writing for the majority. Certain judges and scholars have argued ...


Multiple Chancellors: Reforming The National Injunction, Samuel L. Bray Jan 2017

Multiple Chancellors: Reforming The National Injunction, Samuel L. Bray

Journal Articles

In several recent high-profile cases, federal district judges have issued injunctions that apply across the nation, controlling the defendants’ behavior with respect to nonparties. This Article analyzes the scope of injunctions to restrain the enforcement of a federal statute, regulation, or order. This analysis shows the consequences of the national injunction: more forum shopping, worse judicial decisionmaking, a risk of conflicting injunctions, and tension with other doctrines and practices of the federal courts.

This Article shows that the national injunction is a recent development in the history of equity. There was a structural shift at the Founding from a single-chancellor ...


Semantic Vagueness And Extrajudicial Constitutional Decisionmaking, Anthony O'Rourke Jan 2017

Semantic Vagueness And Extrajudicial Constitutional Decisionmaking, Anthony O'Rourke

Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


Capital Punishment Of Unintentional Felony Murder, Guyora Binder, Brenner Fissell, Robert Weisberg Jan 2017

Capital Punishment Of Unintentional Felony Murder, Guyora Binder, Brenner Fissell, Robert Weisberg

Journal Articles

Under the prevailing interpretation of the Eighth Amendment in the lower courts, a defendant who causes a death inadvertently in the course of a felony is eligible for capital punishment. This unfortunate interpretation rests on an unduly mechanical reading of the Supreme Court’s decisions in Enmund v. Florida and Tison v. Arizona, which require culpability for capital punishment of co-felons who do not kill. The lower courts have drawn the unwarranted inference that these cases permit execution of those who cause death without any culpability towards death. This Article shows that this mechanical reading of precedent is mistaken, because ...