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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Most Revealing Word In The United States Report, Richard Primus Jan 2019

The Most Revealing Word In The United States Report, Richard Primus

Articles

The most prominent issue in NFIB v. Sebelius was whether Congress’s regulatory power under the Commerce Clause stops at a point marked by a distinction between “activity” and “inactivity.” According to the law’s challengers, prior decisions about the scope of the commerce power already reflected the importance of the distinction between action and inaction. In all of the previous cases in which exercises of the commerce power had been sustained, the challengers argued, that power had been used to regulate activity. Never had Congress tried to regulate mere inactivity. In NFIB, four Justices rejected that contention, writing that ...


The Gibbons Fallacy, Richard A. Primus Mar 2017

The Gibbons Fallacy, Richard A. Primus

Articles

In Gibbons v. Ogden, Chief Justice John Marshall famously wrote that "the enumeration presupposes something not enumerated." Modern courts use that phrase to mean that the Constitutions enumeration of congressional powers indicates that those powers are, as a whole, less than a grant of general legislative authority. But Marshall wasn't saying that. He wasn't talking about the Constitution's overall enumeration of congressional powers at all. He was writing about a different enumeration - the enumeration of three classes of commerce within the Commerce Clause. And Marshall's analysis of the Commerce Clause in Gibbons does not imply that ...


The Puzzling Presumption Of Reviewability, Nicholas Bagley Mar 2014

The Puzzling Presumption Of Reviewability, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

The presumption in favor of judicial review of agency action is a cornerstone of administrative law, accepted by courts and commentators alike as both legally appropriate and obviously desirable. Yet the presumption is puzzling. As with any canon of statutory construction that serves a substantive end, it should find a source in history, positive law, the Constitution, or sound policy considerations. None of these, however, offers a plausible justification for the presumption. As for history, the sort of judicial review that the presumption favors - appellate-style arbitrariness review - was not only unheard of prior to the twentieth century, but was commonly ...


Enacted Legislative Findings And The Deference Problem, Daniel A. Crane Mar 2014

Enacted Legislative Findings And The Deference Problem, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

The constitutionality of federal legislation sometimes turns on the presence and sufficiency of congressional findings of predicate facts, such as the effects of conduct on interstate commerce, state discrimination justifying the abrogation of sovereign immunity, or market failures justifying intrusions on free speech. Sometimes a congressional committee makes these findings in legislative history. Other times, Congress recites its findings in a statutory preamble, thus enacting its findings as law. Surprisingly, the Supreme Court has not distinguished between enacted and unenacted findings in deciding how much deference to accord congressional findings. This is striking because the difference between enactedness and unenactedness ...


The Jurisprudence Of Union, Gil Seinfeld Jan 2014

The Jurisprudence Of Union, Gil Seinfeld

Articles

The primary goal of this Article is to demonstrate that the interest in national unity does important, independent work in the law of vertical federalism. We have long been accustomed to treating union as a constitutionally operative value in cases involving the duties states owe one another (i.e. horizontal federalism cases), but in cases involving the relationship between the federal government and the states, the interest in union is routinely ignored. This Article shows that, across a wide range of cases relating to the allocation of power between the federal government and the states, the states are constrained by ...


Election Law's Lochnerian Turn, Ellen D. Katz Jan 2014

Election Law's Lochnerian Turn, Ellen D. Katz

Articles

This panel has been asked to consider whether "the Constitution [is] responsible for electoral dysfunction."' My answer is no. The electoral process undeniably falls well short of our aspirations, but it strikes me that we should look to the Supreme Court for an accounting before blaming the Constitution for the deeply unsatisfactory condition in which we find ourselves.


How The Gun-Free School Zones Act Saved The Individual Mandate, Richard A. Primus Jan 2012

How The Gun-Free School Zones Act Saved The Individual Mandate, Richard A. Primus

Articles

For all the drama surrounding the Commerce Clause challenge to the in-dividual mandate provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”), the doctrinal question presented is simple. Under existing doctrine, the provision is as valid as can be. To be sure, the Supreme Court could alter existing doctrine, and many interesting things could be written about the dynamics that sometimes prompt judges to strike out in new directions under the pressures of cases like this one. But it is not my intention to pursue that possibility here. My own suspicion, for what it is worth, is that the ...


Article I, Article Iii, And The Limits Of Enumeration, Gil Seinfeld Jan 2010

Article I, Article Iii, And The Limits Of Enumeration, Gil Seinfeld

Articles

Article I, Section 8 and Article Ill, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution deploy parallel strategies for constraining the power of the federal government. They enumerate powers that the national legislature and judiciary, respectively, are permitted to exercise and thereby implicitly prohibit these two branches of government from exercising powers not enumerated. According to conventional thinking, this strategy has failed in connection with Article I and succeeded in connection with Article III. That is, it is widely acknowledged that Congress routinely exercises powers that are difficult to square with the Article I enumeration; but it is commonly thought that ...


The Functions Of Ethical Originalism, Richard A. Primus Jan 2010

The Functions Of Ethical Originalism, Richard A. Primus

Articles

Supreme Court Justices frequently divide on questions of original meaning, and the divisions have a way of mapping what we might suspect are the Justices’ leanings about the merits of cases irrespective of originalist considerations. The same is true for law professors and other participants in constitutional discourse: people’s views of original constitutional meaning tend to align well with their (nonoriginalist) preferences for how present constitutional controversies should be resolved. To be sure, there are exceptions. Some people are better than others at suspending presentist considerations when examining historical materials, and some people are better than others at recognizing ...


The Riddle Of Hiram Revels, Richard A. Primus Jan 2006

The Riddle Of Hiram Revels, Richard A. Primus

Articles

In 1870, a black man named Hiram Revels was named to represent Mississippi in the Senate. Senate Democrats objected to seating him and pointed out that the Constitution specifies that no person may be a senator who has not been a citizen of the United States for at least nine years. Before the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment in 1868, the Democrats argued, Revels had not been a citizen on account of the Supreme Court's 1857 decision in Dred Scott v. Sandford. Thus, even if Revels were a citizen in 1870, he had held that status for only two ...


Free-Standing Due Process And Criminal Procedure: The Supreme Court's Search For Interpretive Guidelines, Jerold H. Israel Jan 2001

Free-Standing Due Process And Criminal Procedure: The Supreme Court's Search For Interpretive Guidelines, Jerold H. Israel

Articles

When I was first introduced to the constitutional regulation of criminal procedure in the mid-1950s, a single issue dominated the field: To what extent did the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment impose upon states the same constitutional restraints that the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Eighth Amendments imposed upon the federal government? While those Bill of Rights provisions, as even then construed, imposed a broad range of constitutional restraints upon the federal criminal justice system, the federal system was (and still is) minuscule as compared to the combined systems of the fifty states. With the Bill of Rights provisions ...


Constitutions And Spontaneous Orders: A Response To Professor Mcginnis, Adam C. Pritchard, Todd J. Zywicki Jan 1999

Constitutions And Spontaneous Orders: A Response To Professor Mcginnis, Adam C. Pritchard, Todd J. Zywicki

Articles

Professor John McGinnis has written a perceptive and provocative comment on our economic analysis of the role of tradition in constitutional interpretation.1 A brief summary of our areas of agreement and disagreement may help set the stage for this response. It appears that Professor McGinnis substantially agrees with the two central propositions of our article. First, he appears to agree with our definition of efficient traditions as those evolving over long periods of time from decentralized processes.2 Second, he explicitly agrees that Justices Scalia and Souter have adopted sub-optimal models of tradition because they rely on sources that ...


Finding The Constitution: An Economic Analysis Of Tradition's Role In Constitutional Interpretation, Adam C. Pritchard, Todd J. Zywicki Jan 1999

Finding The Constitution: An Economic Analysis Of Tradition's Role In Constitutional Interpretation, Adam C. Pritchard, Todd J. Zywicki

Articles

In this Article, Professor Pritchard and Professor Zywicki examine the role of tradition in constitutional interpretation, a topic that has received significant attention in recent years. After outlining the current debate over the use of tradition, the authors discuss the efficiency purposes of constitutionalism--precommitment and the reduction of agency costs--and demonstrate how the use of tradition in constitutional interpretation can serve these purposes. Rejecting both Justice Scalia's majoritarian model, which focuses on legislative sources of tradition, and Justice Souter's common-law model, which focuses on Supreme Court precedent as a source of tradition, the authors propose an alternative model--the ...


The Distrust Of Politics, Terrance Sandalow Jan 1981

The Distrust Of Politics, Terrance Sandalow

Articles

In this Article, Dean Sandalow considers the justifications advanced by those who favor the removal of certain political issues from the political process by extending the reach of judicial review. He begins by examining the distrust of politics in a different context, discussing the proposals made by the Progressives for reforming municipal government, as a vehicle to expose the assumptions underlying the current debate. His comparison of the two historical settings reveals many similarities between the Progressives' reform proposals and the contemporary justiflcations.[or the displacement of politics with constitutional law. Dean Sandalow concludes that the distrust of politics rests ...


Elfbrandt V. Russell: The Demise Of The Loyalty Oath, Jerold H. Israel Jan 1966

Elfbrandt V. Russell: The Demise Of The Loyalty Oath, Jerold H. Israel

Articles

In Elfbrandt v. Russell, the Supreme Court, in a 5-to-4 decision, declared unconstitutional Arizona's requirement of a loyalty oath from state employees. At first glance, Elfbrandt appears to be just another decision voiding a state loyalty oath on limited grounds relating to the specific language of the particular oath. Yet, several aspects of Mr. Justice Douglas' opinion for the majority suggest that Elfbrandt is really of far greater significance: it may sharply limit the scope and coverage of loyalty oaths generally and, indeed, may presage a ruling invalidating all such oaths. Of course, only the Supreme Court can determine ...


Divorce Problems In The Conflict Of Laws, Herbert F. Goodrich Jan 1923

Divorce Problems In The Conflict Of Laws, Herbert F. Goodrich

Articles

Divorce may be considered as the termination of the legal relationship between husband and wife by an act of the law. With the purely local aspect of legal questions regarding divorce, Conflict of Laws is not concerned. If a husband and wife are married and have their home in one state, legal questions concerning their divorce are local matters only. These will include the grounds for divorce, the particular court in which the action is brought, the procedure to be followed from commencement to termination of the action. In such a case it is only when some question concerning the ...


The Newberry Case, Ralph W. Aigler Jan 1921

The Newberry Case, Ralph W. Aigler

Articles

Senator Newberry of Michigan and sixteen others were convicted in the United States District Court on the charge that they "unlawfully and feloniously did conspire, combine, confederate, and agree together to commit the offense [in the Newberry indictment] on his part of wilfully violating the act of Congress approved June 25, 1910, as amended, by giving, contributing, expending, and using and by causing to be given, contributed, expended and used in procuring his nomination and election at said primary and general elections, a greater sum than the laws of Michigan permitted and above ten thousand dollars," etc. The Act of ...


Full Faith And Credit And Jurisdiction, Willard T. Barbour Jan 1918

Full Faith And Credit And Jurisdiction, Willard T. Barbour

Articles

The judgment of a sister state, when assailed by collateral attack, is often said to occupy a position intermediate between foreign and domestic judgments. Though the older American cases were inclined to examine into the merits of any foreign judgment, the present tendency is toward the adoption of the English view according to which a foreign judgment may be attacked collaterally only for want of jurisdiction or fraud. Dicey, Conflict of Laws (ed. 2) Ch. XVII; see note to Tremblay v. Aetna Life Insurance Co., 97 Me. 547, in 94 Am. St. Rep. 521, 538. But whereas any statement of ...


The Federal Constitution Is Not Violated By A State Law Compelling One Accused Of Crime To Testify Against Himself, James H. Brewster Jan 1909

The Federal Constitution Is Not Violated By A State Law Compelling One Accused Of Crime To Testify Against Himself, James H. Brewster

Articles

A case has been recently decided by the Supreme Court of Colorado, upon a condition of facts which it seems, has not an exact parallel in any of the reports. After being in litigation for more than eleven years the question involved was finally settled by the court of last resort of that state. In effect the decision goes to the extent of saying, that when a note is endorsed specially and afterwards comes back to the party making such special endorsement, and the party reissues the same without striking out his endorsement, no new endorsement is necessary, since the ...


The Limits To Legislative Power In The Passage Of Curative Laws, Thomas M. Cooley Dec 1880

The Limits To Legislative Power In The Passage Of Curative Laws, Thomas M. Cooley

Articles

There has always been some regret that, when the Federal judiciary was called upon to interpret and apply the prohibition in the Constitution of ex post facto laws,1 it did not reach the condlusion that retrospective laws were forbidden, as well where they applied to civil rights as when they concerned criminal liabilities or penalties. The famous twenty-ninth chapter of the great charter placed the protection of liberty and property upon the same basis, and the power to reach the one by indirection is subject to the same objections in principle, that could be urged against the power to ...


Power Of Judiciary To Declare A Law Unconstitutional, Charles A. Kent Dec 1871

Power Of Judiciary To Declare A Law Unconstitutional, Charles A. Kent

Articles

The judiciary has no power to declare a law unconstitutional unless it conflicts with some provision of the State or Federal Constitution. It will be the purpose of this article to show the reasonableness and meaning of this principle.