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The Media Exemption Puzzle Of Campaign Finance Laws, Sonja R. West Jan 2016

The Media Exemption Puzzle Of Campaign Finance Laws, Sonja R. West

Scholarly Works

In the 2010 case of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the United States Supreme Court solidified the media exemption dilemma in campaign finance law. When attempting to address concerns about corporate campaign expenditures (i.e., corporate political speech), legislatures are now stuck between a rock and a hard place. Regulate media corporations, and they violate press freedoms. Exempt media corporations from the regulations, however, and they are accused of speaker discrimination.

Thus the question of how to treat the press in campaign finance law can no longer be ignored. Can legislatures, without running afoul of the First Amendment, ever ...


What Did The Supreme Court Hold In Heffernan V. City Of Paterson?, Michael Wells Jan 2016

What Did The Supreme Court Hold In Heffernan V. City Of Paterson?, Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

As a favor to his mother, Jeffrey Heffernan picked up a political yard sign. His supervisors demoted him, in the mistaken belief that he had engaged in protected speech. In Heffernan v. City of Patterson, 136 S.Ct. 1412 (2016), the Supreme Court held that a public employee can sue a local government under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 when a supervisor acts for constitutionally impermissible motives, even though he has not in fact exercised First Amendment rights. But the grounds for that holding are unclear. The Court may have ruled that the city, through its police chief, violated Heffernan ...


Twenty-Week Abortion Statutes: Four Arguments, Randy Beck Jan 2016

Twenty-Week Abortion Statutes: Four Arguments, Randy Beck

Scholarly Works

The Supreme Court has never justified the conclusion that the Constitution bars any substantial regulation designed to protect fetal life prior to viability. No majority opinion has ever offered a rationale for the viability rule, and the arguments recited in non-majority opinions are either conclusory or fail to distinguish viability from earlier lines that might be drawn. The most coherent academic attempt to justify the rule — Professor Laurence Tribe’s argument that a woman can “transfer nurture of [a viable] fetus to other hands” — rests on the erroneous assumption that a pregnant woman can arrange for premature delivery of any ...


The Pros And Cons Of Politically Reversible 'Semisubstantive' Constitutional Rules, Dan T. Coenen May 2009

The Pros And Cons Of Politically Reversible 'Semisubstantive' Constitutional Rules, Dan T. Coenen

Scholarly Works

Most observers of constitutional adjudication believe that it works in an all-or-nothing way. On this view, the substance of challenged rules is of decisive importance, so that political decision makers may resuscitate invalidated laws only by way of constitutional amendment. This conception of constitutional law is incomplete. In fact, courts often use so-called “semisubstantive” doctrines that focus on the processes that nonjudicial officials have used in adopting constitutionally problematic rules. When a court strikes down a rule by using a motive-centered or legislative-findings doctrine, for example, political decision makers may revive that very rule without need for a constitutional amendment ...


The Partially Prudential Doctrine Of Mootness, Matthew I. Hall Apr 2009

The Partially Prudential Doctrine Of Mootness, Matthew I. Hall

Scholarly Works

The conventional understanding of mootness doctrine is that it operates as a mandatory bar to federal court jurisdiction, derived from the "cases or controversies" clause of the United States Constitution, Article III. In two crucial respects, however, this Constitutional model - which was first adopted by the Supreme Court less than 45 years ago - fails to account for the manner in which courts actually address contentions of mootness. First, the commonly-applied exceptions to the mootness bar are not derived from the "cases or controversies" clause and cannot be reconciled with the Constitutional account of mootness. Second, courts regularly consider and resolve ...


The Supreme Courts Municipal Bond Decision And The Market-Participant Exception To The Dormant Commerce Clause, Dan T. Coenen Jan 2009

The Supreme Courts Municipal Bond Decision And The Market-Participant Exception To The Dormant Commerce Clause, Dan T. Coenen

Scholarly Works

Does it violate the dormant Commerce Clause for a state to exempt interest earned on its own bonds, but no others, from income taxation? In a recent decision, the Supreme Court answered this question in the negative. Six members of the Court found the case controlled by the state-self-promotion exception to the dormancy doctrine's antidiscrimination rule. Three of those Justices, however, went further by also invoking the longstanding market-participant exception to sustain the discriminatory state tax break. This Essay challenges that alternative line of analysis. According to the author, the plurality's effort to apply the market-participant principle: (1 ...


"Sociological Legitimacy" In Supreme Court Opinions, Michael Wells Jul 2007

"Sociological Legitimacy" In Supreme Court Opinions, Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

Analysis of a Supreme Court opinion ordinarily begins from the premise that the opinion is a transparent window into the Court's thinking, such that the reasons offered by the Court are, or ought to be, the reasons that account for the holding. Scholars debate the strength of the Court's reasoning, question or defend the Court's candor, and propose alternative ways of justifying the ruling. This Article takes issue with the transparency premise, on both descriptive and normative grounds. Especially in controversial cases, the Court is at least as much concerned with presenting its holding in a way ...


Federalism And Accountability: State Attorneys General, Regulatory Litigation, And The New Federalism, Timothy L. Meyer Jun 2007

Federalism And Accountability: State Attorneys General, Regulatory Litigation, And The New Federalism, Timothy L. Meyer

Scholarly Works

This Comment will examine how one particular state institution, state attorneys general (SAGs), has operated within a unique set of institutional and political constraints to create state-based regulation with nationwide impact in policy areas including consumer protection, antitrust, environmental regulation, and securities regulation. This state-based regulation casts doubt on one of the principle rationales advanced in the Supreme Court's anticommandeering line of cases for limiting federal power; namely, that such a move enhances electoral accountability, a concept central to our democracy. If in the absence of federal regulation a series of narrowly accountable state-based actors can create nationwide regulation ...


The Essential Holding Of Casey: Rethinking Viability, J. Randy Beck Apr 2007

The Essential Holding Of Casey: Rethinking Viability, J. Randy Beck

Scholarly Works

The Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey plurality acknowledged an obligation to "justify the lines we draw." The corollary would seem to be an obligation to eschew lines that defy principled justification. In the decades since Roe v. Wade, the Court has offered no adequate rationale for the viability standard, notwithstanding persistent judicial and academic critiques. Exacerbating this country's divisions over abortion and placing us out of step with the world community, the viability rule seems a strong candidate for abandonment as the Court continues to rethink its abortion jurisprudence in the aftermath of Casey.


The Story Of Me: The Underprotection Of Autobiographical Speech, Sonja R. West Oct 2006

The Story Of Me: The Underprotection Of Autobiographical Speech, Sonja R. West

Scholarly Works

This Article begins the debate over the constitutional underprotection of autobiographical speech. While receiving significant historical, scientific, religious, and philosophical respect for centuries, the timehonored practice of talking about yourself has been ignored by legal scholars. A consequence of this oversight is that current free speech principles protect the autobiographies of the powerful but leave the stories of “ordinary” people vulnerable to challenge. Shifting attitudes about privacy combined with advanced technologies, meanwhile, have led to more people than ever before having both the desire and the means to tell their stories to a widespread audience. This Article argues that truthful ...


The Roberts Court: Year 1, Lori A. Ringhand Jul 2006

The Roberts Court: Year 1, Lori A. Ringhand

Scholarly Works

This paper is an empirical analysis of the Supreme Court's recently-ended 2005 term, including an examination of the issues raised by, and the ideological direction of, the decisions issued by the Court. In addition to reviewing the work of the Court as a whole, the paper also separately examines the jurisprudence of new Justices Roberts and Alito. In doing so, it raises the possibility that these justices may have more in common with each other than with the Court's more established conservative members. The paper also demonstrates that the Court, pursuant to one of Justice Roberts' frequently stated ...


Federal Constitutional Restraints On Tax Competition Among The American States, Walter Hellerstein Jan 2006

Federal Constitutional Restraints On Tax Competition Among The American States, Walter Hellerstein

Scholarly Works

This article examines the judicially developed rules limiting interstate tax competition in the United States and the constitutional framework out of which they arise.


Taking Your Case To The Court Of Public Opinion – Strategic, Legal And Ethical Implications Conference, Geoffrey C. Hazard Jr., C. Ronald Ellington, Lonnie T. Brown, David L. Balser, Sally Yates, Peter Canfield, Bruce Harvey, Paul Butler, Joseph Gladden, Larry D. Thompson, Robert Rothman, Linda Disantis, Kenneth Canfield, Adam Liptak Nov 2005

Taking Your Case To The Court Of Public Opinion – Strategic, Legal And Ethical Implications Conference, Geoffrey C. Hazard Jr., C. Ronald Ellington, Lonnie T. Brown, David L. Balser, Sally Yates, Peter Canfield, Bruce Harvey, Paul Butler, Joseph Gladden, Larry D. Thompson, Robert Rothman, Linda Disantis, Kenneth Canfield, Adam Liptak

Conferences and Symposia to 2010

During the daylong conference, judges, lawyers and members of the news media debated the professional and moral consequences of discussing legal cases with the media.


International Norms In Constitutional Law, Michael Wells Jun 2004

International Norms In Constitutional Law, Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

Whether the Supreme Court should look to international law in deciding constitutional issue depends largely on what is meant by "looking to" international law. Some international norms are legally binding on American courts, either because we have agreed to follow them by adopting treaties or because they form part of the federal common law. I certainly agree that the Supreme Court, like the rest of us, ought to obey these aspects of international law. But the role of international norms in American courts has recently attracted attention for a different reason. In Lawrence v. Texas the Supreme Court, overruling Bowers ...


The Use Of International Sources In Constitutional Opinion, Daniel M. Bodansky Jun 2004

The Use Of International Sources In Constitutional Opinion, Daniel M. Bodansky

Scholarly Works

My argument for the use of international materials to interpret the Constitutional will proceed in four parts. First, I will argue that international law has a venerable history in constitutional interpretation. Second, I will argue that American courts and foreign courts are engaged in a common legal enterprise and could learn from one another. Third, I will argue that the text of certain constitutional provisions invites the use of international materials. Finally, I will argue that taking international opinion into account has strong pragmatic justifications.


Technological Advances Leading To The Diminishing Of Privacy Rights, Anabelle Maria D'Souza Mar 2003

Technological Advances Leading To The Diminishing Of Privacy Rights, Anabelle Maria D'Souza

LLM Theses and Essays

The Purpose of this thesis is to bring about the awareness of the importance of privacy in our lives. Privacy is an essential element of a free society without which individuals would lose the ability to interact with one another in private. With the advancement in police surveillance technology there is a clash between an individuals right to keep a secret and the State’s power to penetrate that secret. State of the art technologies such as the financial crimes enforcement network, wearable computing and surveillance cameras are some of the latest devices invading privacy. These technological advances have become ...


The Heart Of Federalism: Pretext Review Of Means-End Relationships, J. Randy Beck Jan 2003

The Heart Of Federalism: Pretext Review Of Means-End Relationships, J. Randy Beck

Scholarly Works

Section I of this article seeks to correct a common scholarly misconception regarding the sort of pretext review envisioned by McCulloch v. Maryland. All students of McCulloch understand the decision to call for judicial review of the means-end relationship underlying a federal statute. But McCulloch also indicated that the Court would strike down legislation "should Congress, under the pretext of executing its powers, pass laws for the accomplishment of objects not entrusted to the government." Various constitutional scholars construe this pretext passage to contemplate a second inquiry--separate from the Court's scrutiny of means-end relationships--into whether the legislative motive behind ...


Means/Ends Analysis In Copyright Law: Eldred V. Ashcroft In One Act, Dan T. Coenen, Paul J. Heald Oct 2002

Means/Ends Analysis In Copyright Law: Eldred V. Ashcroft In One Act, Dan T. Coenen, Paul J. Heald

Scholarly Works

The authors examine Eldred v. Ashcroft in a play setting where one of the characters plays a constitutional law professor and the other character plays an intellectual property professor.


Corrective Justice And Constitutional Torts, Bernard P. Dauenhauer, Michael L. Wells Apr 2001

Corrective Justice And Constitutional Torts, Bernard P. Dauenhauer, Michael L. Wells

Scholarly Works

Tort liability in the private realm may be understood as "an instrument aimed...at deterrence...[and] a way of achieving corrective justice between the parties." Following the common law model, the Supreme Court has borrowed this normative framework for constitutional torts, ruling that the aims of liability for damages are to vindicate constitutional rights and to deter constitutional violations. A recent article by Daryl Levinson takes issue with this approach. Levinson argues that the superficial similarities between public torts and private torts conceal real differences, to which neither the Court nor scholars have paid adequate attention. The main point of ...


Foreword: Symposium Re-Examining First Principles: Deterrence And Corrective Justice In Constitutional Torts, Thomas A. Eaton Apr 2001

Foreword: Symposium Re-Examining First Principles: Deterrence And Corrective Justice In Constitutional Torts, Thomas A. Eaton

Scholarly Works

This Symposium provides a forum for a careful and thoughtful consideration of whether constitutional tort law can deter wrongdoing and is consistent with principles of corrective justice.


Section 1983, The First Amendment, And Public Employee Speech: Shaping The Right To Fit The Remedy (And Vice Versa), Michael Wells Apr 2001

Section 1983, The First Amendment, And Public Employee Speech: Shaping The Right To Fit The Remedy (And Vice Versa), Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

This Article is not about theories of free speech and how they bear on the public employment context, nor does it contribute to the academic debate over what the aims of public employee speech law ought to be. I take the Court at its word when it says that its aim is to give substantial weight to both the value of speech and the government's interest as an employer. Unlike Massaro and Ingber, I take it as a given that the government may insist on hierarchy and obedience to authority in the workplace. Unlike Rosenthal, I begin from the ...


Why Constitutional Torts Deserve A Book Of Their Own, Michael Wells, Thomas A. Eaton, Sheldon H. Nahmod Apr 1999

Why Constitutional Torts Deserve A Book Of Their Own, Michael Wells, Thomas A. Eaton, Sheldon H. Nahmod

Scholarly Works

Over thirty years ago, Marshall Shapo coined the term "constitutional tort" to denote a suit brought against an official, charging a constitutional violation and seeking damages. In the years since Shapo's pathbreaking article, the number of such suits has grown exponentially. The suits have generated a host of new substantive and remedial issues, yet conventional casebooks on constitutional law and federal courts give little attention to the area. That Professor Shapiro had four books to include in his review of "Civil Rights" casebooks in the Seattle University Law Review is some indication of a demand for teaching materials currently ...


Constitutional Remedies, Section 1983 And The Common Law, Michael L. Wells Sep 1998

Constitutional Remedies, Section 1983 And The Common Law, Michael L. Wells

Scholarly Works

Constitutional tort law marries the substantive rights granted by the Constitution to the remedial mechanism of tort law. The sweeping language of 42 U.S.C. 1983 provides that "[e]very person who, under color of any [state law] subjects, or causes to be subjected, any [person] to the deprivation of any [constitutional rights] shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress." Constitutional tort suits raise, in a new context, many tort-like remedial questions relating to causation, immunity, and damages--and therein lies a problem. The usual source ...


Suspect Linkage: The Interplay Of State Taxing And Spending Measures In The Application Of Constitutional Antidiscrimination Rules, Dan T. Coenen, Walter Hellerstein Jun 1997

Suspect Linkage: The Interplay Of State Taxing And Spending Measures In The Application Of Constitutional Antidiscrimination Rules, Dan T. Coenen, Walter Hellerstein

Scholarly Works

This article examines an important and recurring question that courts frequently resolve, but rarely analyze: whether taxing and spending measures should be viewed together when a state imposes a nondiscriminatory tax but also affords relief to some taxpayers through government spending. The answer to this question will often determine whether the state's actions violate constitutional strictures against discriminatory taxation. The taxing measure and the spending measure will generally pass muster if viewed in isolation. After all, courts rarely invalidate nondiscriminatory taxing measures on constitutional grounds. And true government spending measures, if considered alone, plainly fall outside the reach of ...


The Recognition And Enforcement Of Foreign Equitable Remedies And Other Types Of Non-Money Judgments In United States And French Courts: A Comparative Analysis, Noele Sophie Rigot Jan 1996

The Recognition And Enforcement Of Foreign Equitable Remedies And Other Types Of Non-Money Judgments In United States And French Courts: A Comparative Analysis, Noele Sophie Rigot

LLM Theses and Essays

Courts of industrialized nations are often faced with adjudication of cases which involve foreign components. It is common for those courts to be asked by individuals or legal entities from a transnational environment to adjudicate with regard to some elements already adjudged in a different legal system as if it were a local judgment. The question that arises is how effects should be given when dealing with prior adjudications. Most countries agree to recognize some effects determined by foreign jurisdictions, as long as those determinations meet standards that guarantee proper integration of the foreign decision into the domestic setting. These ...


Constitutional Torts: Combining Diverse Doctrines And Practicality, Thomas A. Eaton, Michael Wells Mar 1995

Constitutional Torts: Combining Diverse Doctrines And Practicality, Thomas A. Eaton, Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

Constitutional Torts is, in part, a response to our sense that the upper level curriculum could be improved by courses that bring together areas of doctrine that are often studied in isolation. We think there is substantial value in bringing together seemingly disparate areas of doctrine that bear on a common real-world problem. Students benefit from learning how to put together concepts from different substantive areas in order to solve problems they will face in practice.


Rights As Trumps, Dan T. Coenen Jan 1993

Rights As Trumps, Dan T. Coenen

Scholarly Works

In this essay, I question Professor Fallon's strong rejection of the notion that "rights are trumps" by making four points. First, rights are trumps in the single, but important, sense that they preclude the exercise of powers granted to government by the constitutional text. Second, rights sometimes operate as trumps on governmental powers in the very purse sense that they cut off all consideration of governmental interests. Third, even when the Court considers government interests in dealing with rights, it often does so on such a restricted basis that the description of rights as "trumps" remains accurate. Finally, even ...


Experimenting With The "Right To Die" In The Laboratory Of The States, Thomas A. Eaton, Edward J. Larson Jul 1991

Experimenting With The "Right To Die" In The Laboratory Of The States, Thomas A. Eaton, Edward J. Larson

Scholarly Works

The purposes of this Article are twofold. Our first purpose is to reexamine the legal foundations of a patient's right to refuse treatment. The Court's equivocal handling of the federal constitutional issues in Cruzan v. Director, Missouri Department of Health invites a closer look at state constitutional, statutory and common law. The source of the underlying right will affect state experimentation with substantive and procedural rules in this area. Our second purpose is to describe the current status of the states' experiments with the right to die. That is, we elaborate in more detail on the state constitutional ...


The Constitutional Case Against Intracircuit Nonacquiescence, Dan T. Coenen May 1991

The Constitutional Case Against Intracircuit Nonacquiescence, Dan T. Coenen

Scholarly Works

A cornerstone of the United States Constitution is its separation of powers among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the national government. The Framers of the Constitution reasoned that separated powers would guard against tyranny by blocking the undue concentration of authority in any single governmental department. In crafting the Constitution, however, the Framers could not anticipate every dispute their scheme of separated powers might engender. One modern separation-of-powers conflict not specifically anticipated by the constitutional text involves so-called "intracircuit nonacquiescence.”

Intracircuit nonacquiescence occurs when executive-branch decision makers refuse to follow a circuit court's precedents even when acting ...


Is Disparity A Problem?, Michael Wells Jan 1988

Is Disparity A Problem?, Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

Part I describes aspects of the historical and doctrinal background of judicial federalism. Part II examines the Court's treatment of the parity issue and shows how the Court's ambiguity permits both sides of the debate to avoid revealing their true objectives. Part III demonstrates that some, but not all, of the allocation doctrine can be explained in terms of a conflict between the plaintiff's litigating interest and the state's interest in maintaining the integrity of the state judicial process. A significant body of cases, however, does not fall within this framework. In these cases the Court ...