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Rwu First Amendment Blog: Jared Goldstein's Blog: Masterpiece Cakeshop Ruling: No Constitutional Right To Discriminate (For Now) 06-05-2018, Jared A. Goldstein 2018 Roger Williams University School of Law

Rwu First Amendment Blog: Jared Goldstein's Blog: Masterpiece Cakeshop Ruling: No Constitutional Right To Discriminate (For Now) 06-05-2018, Jared A. Goldstein

Law School Blogs

No abstract provided.


Foreword, Daniel B. Rodriguez 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Foreword, Daniel B. Rodriguez

Northwestern University Law Review

No abstract provided.


Equal Protection And The Social Sciences Thirty Years After Mccleskey V. Kemp, Destiny Peery, Osagie K. Obasogie 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Equal Protection And The Social Sciences Thirty Years After Mccleskey V. Kemp, Destiny Peery, Osagie K. Obasogie

Northwestern University Law Review

No abstract provided.


Blind Justice: Why The Court Refused To Accept Statistical Evidence Of Discriminatory Purpose In Mccleskey V. Kemp—And Some Pathways For Change, Reva B. Siegel 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Blind Justice: Why The Court Refused To Accept Statistical Evidence Of Discriminatory Purpose In Mccleskey V. Kemp—And Some Pathways For Change, Reva B. Siegel

Northwestern University Law Review

In McCleskey v. Kemp, the Supreme Court refused to accept statistical evidence of race discrimination in an equal protection challenge to the death penalty. This lecture, on the decision’s thirtieth anniversary, locates McCleskey in cases of the Burger and Rehnquist Courts that restrict proof of discriminatory purpose in terms that make it exceedingly difficult for minority plaintiffs successfully to assert equal protection claims.

The lecture’s aims are both critical and constructive. The historical reading I offer shows that portions of the opinion justify restrictions on evidence to protect prosecutorial discretion, while others limit proof of discrimination in ways ...


Equal Protection Under The Carceral State, Aya Gruber 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Equal Protection Under The Carceral State, Aya Gruber

Northwestern University Law Review

McCleskey v. Kemp, the case that upheld the death penalty despite undeniable evidence of its racially disparate impact, is indelibly marked by Justice William Brennan’s phrase, “a fear of too much justice.” The popular interpretation of this phrase is that the Supreme Court harbored what I call a “disparity-claim fear,” dreading a future docket of racial discrimination claims and erecting an impossibly high bar for proving an equal protection violation. A related interpretation is that the majority had a “color-consciousness fear” of remedying discrimination through race-remedial policies. In contrast to these conventional views, I argue that the primary anxiety ...


Eyes Wide Open: What Social Science Can Tell Us About The Supreme Court's Use Of Social Science, Jonathan P. Feingold, Evelyn R. Carter 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Eyes Wide Open: What Social Science Can Tell Us About The Supreme Court's Use Of Social Science, Jonathan P. Feingold, Evelyn R. Carter

Northwestern University Law Review

The Northwestern University Law Review’s 2017 Symposium asked whether McCleskey v. Kemp closed the door on social science’s ability to meaningfully contribute to equal protection deliberations. This inquiry is understandable; McCleskey is widely understood to have rendered statistical racial disparities doctrinally irrelevant in the equal protection context. We suggest, however, that this account overstates McCleskey and its doctrinal impact. Roughly fifteen years after McCleskey, Chief Justice William Rehnquist—himself part of the McCleskey majority—invoked admissions data to support his conclusion that the University of Michigan Law School unconstitutionally discriminated against white applicants.

Chief Justice Rehnquist’s disparate ...


Equal Protection And White Supremacy, Paul Butler 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Equal Protection And White Supremacy, Paul Butler

Northwestern University Law Review

The project of using social science to help win equal protection claims is doomed to fail if its premise is that the Supreme Court post-McCleskey just needs more or better evidence of racial discrimination. Everyone—including the Justices of the Court—already knows that racial discrimination is endemic in the criminal justice system. Social science does help us to understand the role of white supremacy in U.S. police and punishment practices. Social science also can help us understand how to move people to resist, and can inform our imagination of the transformation needed for equal justice under the ...


The Futile Fourth Amendment: Understanding Police Excessive Force Doctrine Through An Empirical Assessment Of Graham V. Connor, Osagie K. Obasogie, Zachary Newman 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

The Futile Fourth Amendment: Understanding Police Excessive Force Doctrine Through An Empirical Assessment Of Graham V. Connor, Osagie K. Obasogie, Zachary Newman

Northwestern University Law Review

Graham v. Connor established the modern constitutional landscape for police excessive force claims. The Supreme Court not only refined an objective reasonableness test to describe the constitutional standard, but also held that the Fourth Amendment is the sole avenue for courts to adjudicate claims that police violated a person’s constitutional rights in using force. In this Essay, we ask: What impact did this decision have on the nature of police excessive force claims in federal courts? To address this, we engaged in a qualitative examination of 500 federal cases (250 in the twenty-six years before Graham and 250 in ...


Church, State And The Lemon Test: The Shortcomings Of The Supreme Court When Deciding Establishment Clause Cases, Jonathan Broida 2018 The College at Brockport

Church, State And The Lemon Test: The Shortcomings Of The Supreme Court When Deciding Establishment Clause Cases, Jonathan Broida

#History: A Journal of Student Research

This paper argues that the Lemon test is a clear and pragmatic method for ensuring that Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court remain objective when interpreting the Constitution’s Establishment Clause. Critics of the Lemon test have mistakenly suggested that it provides an overly broad interpretation of the Establishment Clause that surpasses its original intent. Analysis of the Supreme Court’s decisions in Lemon v. Kurtzman (1971), Marsh v. Chambers (1983) and Lee v. Weisman (1992) will reveal that blame for the test’s supposed flaws rests on the Justices themselves. Analysis of relevant studies will shed light on ...


Diversity Entitlement: Does Diversity-Benefits Ideology Undermine Inclusion?, Kyneshawau Hurd, Victoria C. Plaut 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Diversity Entitlement: Does Diversity-Benefits Ideology Undermine Inclusion?, Kyneshawau Hurd, Victoria C. Plaut

Northwestern University Law Review

Ideologies are most successful (or most dangerous) when they become common-sense—when they become widely accepted, taken-for-granted truths—because these truths subsequently provide implicit guidelines and expectations about what is moral, legitimate, and necessary in our society. In Regents of University of California v. Bakke, the Court, without a majority opinion, considered and dismissed all but one of several “common-sense” rationales for affirmative action in admissions. While eschewing rationales that focused on addressing discrimination and underrepresentation, the Court found that allowing all students to obtain the educational benefits that flow from diversity was a compelling rationale—essential, even, for a ...


"Playing It Safe" With Empirical Evidence: Selective Use Of Social Science In Supreme Court Cases About Racial Justice And Marriage Equality, Russell K. Robinson, David M. Frost 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

"Playing It Safe" With Empirical Evidence: Selective Use Of Social Science In Supreme Court Cases About Racial Justice And Marriage Equality, Russell K. Robinson, David M. Frost

Northwestern University Law Review

This Essay seeks to draw connections between race, sexual orientation, and social science in Supreme Court litigation. In some respects, advocates for racial minorities and sexual minorities face divergent trajectories. Among those asserting civil rights claims, LGBT rights claimants have been uniquely successful at the Court ever since Romer v. Evans in the mid-1990s. During this period, advocates for racial minorities have fought to preserve earlier victories in cases such as Regents of the University of California v. Bakke and have failed to overturn precedents that strictly limit equal protection possibilities, such as McCleskey v. Kemp. Nonetheless, we argue that ...


What Can Brown Do For You?: Addressing Mccleskey V. Kemp As A Flawed Standard For Measuring The Constitutionally Significant Risk Of Race Bias, Mario L. Barnes, Erwin Chemerinsky 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

What Can Brown Do For You?: Addressing Mccleskey V. Kemp As A Flawed Standard For Measuring The Constitutionally Significant Risk Of Race Bias, Mario L. Barnes, Erwin Chemerinsky

Northwestern University Law Review

This Essay asserts that in McCleskey v. Kemp, the Supreme Court created a problematic standard for the evidence of race bias necessary to uphold an equal protection claim under the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. First, the Court’s opinion reinforced the cramped understanding that constitutional claims require evidence of not only disparate impact but also discriminatory purpose, producing significant negative consequences for the operation of the U.S. criminal justice system. Second, the Court rejected the Baldus study’s findings of statistically significant correlations between the races of the perpetrators and victims and the imposition of the ...


Challenging The Rhetorical Gag And Trap: Reproductive Capacities, Rights, And The Helms Amendment, Michele Goodwin 2018 Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Challenging The Rhetorical Gag And Trap: Reproductive Capacities, Rights, And The Helms Amendment, Michele Goodwin

Northwestern University Law Review

This Essay argues that the battle over women’s autonomy, especially their reproductive healthcare and decision-making, has always been about much more than simply women’s health and safety. Rather, upholding patriarchy and dominion over women’s reproduction historically served political purposes and entrenched social and cultural norms that framed women’s capacities almost exclusively as service to a husband, mothering, reproducing, and sexual chattel. In turn, such social norms—often enforced by statutes and legal opinions—took root in rhetoric rather than the realities of women’s humanity, experiences, capacities, autonomy, and lived lives. As such, law created legal ...


When At Loggerheads With Customary International Law: The Right To Run For Public Office And The Right To Vote, Thompson Chengeta 2018 Brooklyn Law School

When At Loggerheads With Customary International Law: The Right To Run For Public Office And The Right To Vote, Thompson Chengeta

Brooklyn Journal of International Law

Many populist demagogues in America and Europe have spoken; and continue to speak; against human rights in their campaigns for political office. This article discusses the factors that have contributed to the current wave of populism; and the nature of the challenges that are presented by populism to democracy; human rights; and constitutionalism from an international human rights law perspective. It also focuses on President Donald Trump; who was voted President of the United States; even after he clearly and publicly indicated his support for torture and his intentions to approve it in the United States. To that end; the ...


The Utility Of Rational Basis Review, Nicholas Walter 2018 Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law

The Utility Of Rational Basis Review, Nicholas Walter

Villanova Law Review

No abstract provided.


Indian Nations And The Constitution, Joseph William Singer 2018 University of Maine School of Law

Indian Nations And The Constitution, Joseph William Singer

Maine Law Review

This Constitution Day speech focuses on how the Constitution has been interpreted both to protect and to undermine the sovereignty of Indian nations. The good news is that both the text of the Constitution and the practice of the United States have recognized Indian nations as sovereigns who pre-existed the creation of the United States and who retain their inherent original sovereignty. The bad news is that the Constitution has often been interpreted by the Supreme Court to deny Indian nations protection for their property rights and their sovereignty. Most Americans are not aware of the history of interactions between ...


Accelerated Civil Rights Settlements In The Shadow Of Section 1983, Katherine A. Macfarlane 2018 SJ Quinney College of Law, University of Utah

Accelerated Civil Rights Settlements In The Shadow Of Section 1983, Katherine A. Macfarlane

Utah Law Review

The families of Eric Garner, Laquan McDonald, Freddie Gray, and Walter Scott have obtained multimillion dollar settlements from the cities in which their family members lost their lives. This Article identifies and labels these settlements as a legal response unique to high-profile policeinvolved deaths: accelerated civil rights settlement. It defines accelerated civil rights settlement as a resolution strategy that uses the threat of 42 U.S.C. Section 1983 litigation rather than litigation itself to compensate police-involved shooting victims’ family members. This Article explains how accelerated civil rights settlement involves no complaint or case—nothing is filed. Also, the goal ...


Cashing In On Convicts: Privatization, Punishment, And The People, Laura I. Appleman 2018 SJ Quinney College of Law, University of Utah

Cashing In On Convicts: Privatization, Punishment, And The People, Laura I. Appleman

Utah Law Review

For-profit prisons, jails, and alternative corrections present a disturbing commodification of the criminal justice system. Though part of a modern trend, privatized corrections has well-established roots traceable to slavery, Jim Crow, and current racially-based inequities. This monetizing of the physical incarceration and regulation of human bodies has had deleterious effects on offenders, communities, and the proper functioning of punishment in our society. Criminal justice privatization severs an essential link between the people and criminal punishment. When we remove the imposition of punishment from the people and delegate it to private actors, we sacrifice the core criminal justice values of expressive ...


Things Invisible To See: State Action & Private Property, Joseph William Singer, Isaac Saidel-Goley 2018 Texas A&M University School of Law

Things Invisible To See: State Action & Private Property, Joseph William Singer, Isaac Saidel-Goley

Texas A&M Law Review

This Article revisits the state action doctrine, a judicial invention that shields “private” or “non-governmental” discrimination from constitutional scrutiny. Traditionally, this doctrine has applied to discrimination even in places of public accommodation, like restaurants, hotels, and grocery stores. Born of overt racial discrimination, the doctrine has inflicted substantial injustice throughout its inglorious history, and courts have continuously struggled in vain to coherently apply the doctrine. Yet, the United States Supreme Court has not fully insulated “private” or “horizontal” relations among persons from constitutional scrutiny. The cases in which it has applied constitutional norms to non-governmental actors should be celebrated rather ...


The Rhetorical Allure Of Post-Racial Process Discourse And The Democratic Myth, Cedric Merlin Powell 2018 SJ Quinney College of Law, University of Utah

The Rhetorical Allure Of Post-Racial Process Discourse And The Democratic Myth, Cedric Merlin Powell

Utah Law Review

We are witnessing the power of distorted and neutral rhetoric that rings with deceptive clarity. This post-racial process discourse is advanced on many levels: in political discourse, by a distrustful citizenry energized by hateful rhetoric that appeals to their concerns of being “left behind” on the basis of “preferences” for minorities that diminish America’s “greatness,” and a Court that seeks to constitutionalize a mythic democracy that promises participation while implicitly endorsing structural exclusion.

Voter initiatives should not determine the substantive core of the Fourteenth Amendment. While democratic participation is essential to our Republic, decisions like Schuette perpetuate a democratic ...


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