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Full-Text Articles in Jurisprudence

Artis V. District Of Columbia—What Did The Court Actually Say?, Doron M. Kalir Nov 2018

Artis V. District Of Columbia—What Did The Court Actually Say?, Doron M. Kalir

Doron M Kalir

On January 22, 2018, the Supreme Court issued Artis v. District of Columbia. A true "clash of the titans," this 5-4 decision featured colorful comments on both sides, claims of "absurdities," uncited use of Alice in Wonderland vocabulary ("curiouser," anyone?), and an especially harsh accusation by the dissent that "we’ve wandered so far from the idea of a federal government of limited and enumerated powers that we’ve begun to lose sight of what it looked like in the first place."

One might assume that the issue in question was a complex constitutional provision, or a dense, technical federal ...


"I Vote This Way Because I'M Wrong": The Supreme Court Justice As Epimenides, John M. Rogers Dec 2014

"I Vote This Way Because I'M Wrong": The Supreme Court Justice As Epimenides, John M. Rogers

John M. Rogers

Possibly the most unsettling phenomenon in the Supreme Court's 1988 term was Justice White's decision to vote contrary to his own exhaustively stated reasoning in Pennsylvania v. Union Gas Co. His unexplained decision to vote against the result of his own analysis lends support to those who argue that law, or at least constitutional law, is fundamentally indeterminate. Proponents of the indeterminacy argument sometimes base their position on the allegedly inescapable inconsistency of decisions made by a multi-member court. There is an answer to the inconsistency argument, but it founders if justices sometimes vote, without explanation, on the ...


It's The Constitution, Stupid: Two Liberals Pay Tribute To Antonin Scalia's Legacy, Adam Lamparello, Charles E. Maclean May 2014

It's The Constitution, Stupid: Two Liberals Pay Tribute To Antonin Scalia's Legacy, Adam Lamparello, Charles E. Maclean

Adam Lamparello

Living constitutionalism may achieve “good” results, but with each Roe v. Wade, and Bush v. Gore, the Constitution’s vision takes more shallow breaths, and democracy fades into elitism’s shadow. The debate over constitutional interpretation is, in many ways, reducible to this question: if a particular outcome is desirable, and the Constitution’s text is silent or ambiguous, should the United States Supreme Court (or any court) disregard constitutional constraints to achieve that outcome? If the answer is yes, nine unelected judges have the power to choose outcomes that are desirable. If the answer is no, then the focus ...


It's The Constitution, Stupid: Two Liberals Pay Tribute To Antonin Scalia's Legacy, Adam Lamparello, Charles E. Maclean May 2014

It's The Constitution, Stupid: Two Liberals Pay Tribute To Antonin Scalia's Legacy, Adam Lamparello, Charles E. Maclean

Adam Lamparello

Living constitutionalism may achieve “good” results, but with each Roe v. Wade, and Bush v. Gore, the Constitution’s vision takes more shallow breaths, and democracy fades into elitism’s shadow. The debate over constitutional interpretation is, in many ways, reducible to this question: if a particular outcome is desirable, and the Constitution’s text is silent or ambiguous, should the United States Supreme Court (or any court) disregard constitutional constraints to achieve that outcome? If the answer is yes, nine unelected judges have the power to choose outcomes that are desirable. If the answer is no, then the focus ...


Justice Sotomayor's Undemocratic Dissent In Schuette V. Coalition To Defend Affirmative Action, Adam Lamparello May 2014

Justice Sotomayor's Undemocratic Dissent In Schuette V. Coalition To Defend Affirmative Action, Adam Lamparello

Adam Lamparello

There are compelling reasons to support affirmative action programs. The effects of racial discrimination, and racism itself, remain prevalent throughout the country. Pretending otherwise would be to ignore reality. Arguing that the equal protection clause compels a state to implement race-based affirmative action programs, however, would make a mockery of the Constitution. Former Supreme Court Justice Hughes famously stated, “at the constitutional level where we work, 90 percent of any decision is emotional.” The remaining 10 percent is “[t]he rational part … [that] supplies the reasons for supporting our predilections.” It is time for this type of judging to end ...


All Things In Proportion? American Rights Doctrine And The Problem Of Balancing, Alec Stone Sweet Dec 2010

All Things In Proportion? American Rights Doctrine And The Problem Of Balancing, Alec Stone Sweet

Alec Stone Sweet

No abstract provided.


Deliberative Democracy And Weak Courts: Constitutional Design In Nascent Democracies, Edsel F. Tupaz Jan 2009

Deliberative Democracy And Weak Courts: Constitutional Design In Nascent Democracies, Edsel F. Tupaz

Edsel F Tupaz

This Article addresses the question of constitutional design in young and transitional democracies. It argues for the adoption of a “weak” form of judicial review, as opposed to “strong” review which typifies much of contemporary adjudication. It briefly describes how the dialogical strain of deliberative democratic theory might well constitute the normative predicate for systems of weak review. In doing so, the Article draws from various judicial practices, from European supranational tribunals to Canadian courts and even Indian jurisprudence. The Article concludes with the suggestion that no judicial apparatus other than the weak structure of judicial review can better incite ...


Sovereignty And The American Courts At The Cocktail Party Of International Law: The Dangers Of Domestic Invocations Of Foreign And International Law, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2005

Sovereignty And The American Courts At The Cocktail Party Of International Law: The Dangers Of Domestic Invocations Of Foreign And International Law, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

With increasing frequency and heightened debate, United States courts have been citing foreign and “international” law as authority for domestic decisions. This trend is inappropriate, undemocratic, and dangerous. The trend touches on fundamental concepts of sovereignty, democracy, the judicial role, and overall issues of effective governance. There are multiple problems with the judiciary’s reliance on extraterritorial and extra-constitutional foreign or international sources to guide their decisions. Perhaps the most fundamental flaw is its interference with rule of law values. To borrow from Judge Harold Levanthal, the use of international sources in judicial decision-making might be described as “the equivalent ...


The Unconstitutionality Of Class-Based Statutory Limitations On Presidential Nominations: Can A Man Head The Women's Bureau At The Department Of Labor?, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2004

The Unconstitutionality Of Class-Based Statutory Limitations On Presidential Nominations: Can A Man Head The Women's Bureau At The Department Of Labor?, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

Can a man be the Director of the Women’s Bureau at the Department of Labor? According to Congress, the answer is no. Congress has stated by statute that a woman must be the nominee to head the Women’s Bureau at the Department of Labor. The key questions are: (1) even if it makes sense on policy grounds, is it constitutional? and (2) if we accept such a statutory limitation power what are the potential precedential consequences for other appointment matters? This Article’s case study is particularly relevant today, examining just how far Congress can go to limit ...


State Laws And The Independent Judiciary: An Analysis Of The Effects Of The Seventeenth Amendment On The Number Of Supreme Court Cases Holding State Laws Unconstitutional, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2002

State Laws And The Independent Judiciary: An Analysis Of The Effects Of The Seventeenth Amendment On The Number Of Supreme Court Cases Holding State Laws Unconstitutional, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

In recent years, the Seventeenth Amendment has been the subject of legal scholarship, congressional hearings and debate, Supreme Court opinions, popular press articles and commentary, state legislative efforts aimed at repeal, and activist repeal movements. To date, the literature on the effects of the Seventeenth Amendment has focused almost exclusively on the effects on the political production of legislation and competition between legislative bodies. Very little attention has been given to the potential adverse effects of the Seventeenth Amendment on the relationship between state legislatures and the federal courts. This Article seeks to fill part of that literature gap, applying ...


"Public Use" And The Independent Judiciary: Condemnation In An Interest-Group Perspective, Donald J. Kochan Dec 1997

"Public Use" And The Independent Judiciary: Condemnation In An Interest-Group Perspective, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

This Article reexamines the doctrine of public use under the Takings Clause and its ability to impede takings for private use through an application of public choice theory. It argues that the judicial validation of interest-group capture of the condemnation power through a relaxed public use standard in Takings Clause review can be explained by interest group politics and public choice theory and by institutional tendencies inherent in the independent judiciary. Legislators can sell the eminent domain power to special interests for almost any use, promising durability in the deal given the low probability that the judiciary will invalidate it ...