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Constitutional Law

Article III

2012

Maurer School of Law: Indiana University

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Standing Lessons: What We Can Learn When Conservative Plaintiffs Lose Under Article Iii Standing Doctrine, Heather Elliott Apr 2012

Standing Lessons: What We Can Learn When Conservative Plaintiffs Lose Under Article Iii Standing Doctrine, Heather Elliott

Indiana Law Journal

The Supreme Court’s Article III standing doctrine has plagued liberal groups for nearly forty years. Recently, however, the doctrine has blocked a number of conservative lawsuits opposing gay marriage, the 2010 health care law, and the expansion of federal funding for stem cell research.

What can we learn from these cases? Because contemporary criticisms of standing doctrine have usually come from the left and defenses from the right, it is commonplace to associate arguments for broad standing with left-wing political agendas.

But, as some scholars have shown, a version of narrow standing helped liberals protect New Deal legislation in the …