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Constitution

UF Law Faculty Publications

2013

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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Illusory Eighth Amendment, John F. Stinneford Dec 2013

The Illusory Eighth Amendment, John F. Stinneford

UF Law Faculty Publications

Although there is no obvious doctrinal connection between the Supreme Court’s Miranda jurisprudence and its Eighth Amendment excessive punishments jurisprudence, the two are deeply connected at the level of methodology. In both areas, the Supreme Court has been criticized for creating “prophylactic” rules that invalidate government actions because they create a mere risk of constitutional violation. In reality, however, both sets of rules deny constitutional protection to a far greater number of individuals with plausible claims of unconstitutional treatment than they protect.

This dysfunctional combination of over- and underprotection arises from the Supreme Court’s use of implementation rules ...