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Full-Text Articles in Law

Constitutional Confidentiality, Natalie Ram, Jorge L. Contreras, Laura M. Beskow, Leslie E. Wolf Oct 2023

Constitutional Confidentiality, Natalie Ram, Jorge L. Contreras, Laura M. Beskow, Leslie E. Wolf

Washington and Lee Law Review

Federal Certificates of Confidentiality (“Certificates”) protect sensitive information about human research subjects from disclosure and use in judicial, administrative, and legislative proceedings at both the state and federal levels. When they were first authorized by Congress in the 1970s, Certificates covered sensitive information collected in research about drug addiction use. Today, however, they extend to virtually all personal information gathered by biomedical research studies. The broad reach of Certificates, coupled with their power to override state subpoenas and warrants issued in the context of law enforcement, abortion regulation, and other police powers typically under state control, beg the question whether …


The False Promise Of Jurisdiction Stripping, Daniel Epps, Alan M. Trammell Jan 2023

The False Promise Of Jurisdiction Stripping, Daniel Epps, Alan M. Trammell

Scholarly Articles

Jurisdiction stripping is seen as a nuclear option. Its logic is simple: By depriving federal courts of jurisdiction over some set of cases, Congress ensures those courts cannot render bad decisions. To its proponents, it offers the ultimate check on unelected and unaccountable judges. To its critics, it poses a grave threat to the separation of powers. Both sides agree, though, that jurisdiction stripping is a powerful weapon. On this understanding, politicians, activists, and scholars throughout American history have proposed jurisdiction-stripping measures as a way for Congress to reclaim policymaking authority from the courts.

The conventional understanding is wrong. Whatever …


The New Laboratories Of Democracy, Gerald S. Dickinson Jan 2023

The New Laboratories Of Democracy, Gerald S. Dickinson

Articles

Nearly a century ago, Justice Louis D. Brandeis’s dissent in New State Ice Co. v. Liebman coined one of the most profound statements in American law: “It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system that a single courageous state may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.” Justice Brandeis reminded us of our strong tradition of federalism, where the states, exercising their sovereign power, may choose to experiment with new legislation within their separate jurisdictions without the concern that such …


Textualism, Judicial Supremacy, And The Independent State Legislature Theory, Leah M. Litman, Katherine A. Shaw Nov 2022

Textualism, Judicial Supremacy, And The Independent State Legislature Theory, Leah M. Litman, Katherine A. Shaw

Articles

This piece offers an extended critique of one aspect of the so-called "independent state legislature" theory. That theory, in brief, holds that the federal Constitution gives state legislatures, and withholds from any other state entity, the power to regulate federal elections. Proponents ground their theory in two provisions of the federal Constitution: Article I's Elections Clause, which provides that "[t]he Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof," and Article H's Presidential Electors Clause, which provides that "[e]ach State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature …


Interest-Based Incorporation: Statutory Realism Exploring Federalism, Delegation, And Democratic Design, Sheldon Evans Jan 2022

Interest-Based Incorporation: Statutory Realism Exploring Federalism, Delegation, And Democratic Design, Sheldon Evans

Faculty Publications

Statutory interpretation is a unique legal field that appreciates fiction as much as fact. For years, judges and scholars have acknowledged that canons of interpretation are often based on erudite assumptions of how Congress drafts federal statutes. But a recent surge in legal realism has shown just how erroneous many of these assumptions are. Scholars have created a robust study of congressional practices that challenge many formalist canons of interpretation that are divorced from how Congress thinks about, drafts, and enacts federal statutes. This conversation, however, has yet to confront statutory incorporation, which describes when Congress incorporates state law into …


Reconsidering Federalism And The Farm: Toward Including Local, State And Regional Voices In America's Food System, Margaret Sova Mccabe Jul 2021

Reconsidering Federalism And The Farm: Toward Including Local, State And Regional Voices In America's Food System, Margaret Sova Mccabe

Journal of Food Law & Policy

Why is the relationship between our food system and federalism important to American law and health? It is important simply because federal law controls the American food system. This essay considers how federal law came to structure our food system, and suggests that though food is an essential part of our national economy, the dominating role of the federal government alienates citizens from their food system. It does so by characterizing food as a primarily economic issue, rather than one that has ethical, health, and cultural components. However, state and local governments have much to offer in terms of broadening …


Reconsidering Section 1983'S Nonabrogation Of Sovereign Immunity, Katherine Mims Crocker May 2021

Reconsidering Section 1983'S Nonabrogation Of Sovereign Immunity, Katherine Mims Crocker

Faculty Publications

Motivated by civil unrest and the police conduct that prompted it, Americans have embarked on a major reexamination of how constitutional enforcement works. One important component is 42 U.S.C. § 1983, which allows civil suits against any "person" who violates federal rights. The U.S. Supreme Court has long held that "person" excludes states because Section 1983 flunks a condition of crystal clarity.

This Article reconsiders that conclusion--in legalese, Section 1983's nonabrogation of sovereign immunity--along multiple dimensions. Beginning with a negative critique, this Article argues that because the Court invented the crystal-clarity standard so long after Section 1983's enactment, the caselaw …


Suspect Spheres, Not Enumerated Powers: A Guide For Leaving The Lamppost, Richard Primus, Roderick M. Hills Jr. May 2021

Suspect Spheres, Not Enumerated Powers: A Guide For Leaving The Lamppost, Richard Primus, Roderick M. Hills Jr.

Michigan Law Review

Despite longstanding orthodoxy, the Constitution’s enumeration of congressional powers does virtually nothing to limit federal lawmaking. That’s not because of some bizarrely persistent judicial failure to read the Constitution correctly. It’s because the enumeration of congressional powers is not a well-designed technology for limiting federal legislation. Rather than trying to make the enumeration do work that it will not do, decisionmakers should find better ways of thinking about what lawmaking should be done locally rather than nationally. This Article suggests such a rubric, one that asks not whether Congress has permission to do a certain thing but whether a certain …


Reconstructing The Voting Rights Act: Subnational Action And Voting Rights Post-1965, Sean M. Holly Jan 2021

Reconstructing The Voting Rights Act: Subnational Action And Voting Rights Post-1965, Sean M. Holly

Honors Theses

The discussion of suffrage and the development of the U.S. electorate is misguidedly based solely around federal action; constitutional amendments and federal legislation are commonly revered as primary determinants of the right to vote. This tendency poses a specific problem with contemporary discussions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Specifically, discussions of the VRA ignores the ability of subnational actors to innovate politically and readjust their vehicles of political development in the wake of federal supposition of state powers. The Voting Rights Act did not destroy state authority regarding the right to vote; it merely disrupted their vehicles of …


The Democracy Principle In State Constitutions, Jessica Bulman-Pozen, Miriam Seifter Jan 2021

The Democracy Principle In State Constitutions, Jessica Bulman-Pozen, Miriam Seifter

Faculty Scholarship

In recent years, antidemocratic behavior has rippled across the nation. Lame-duck state legislatures have stripped popularly elected governors of their powers; extreme partisan gerrymanders have warped representative institutions; state officials have nullified popularly adopted initiatives. The federal constitution offers few resources to address these problems, and ballot-box solutions cannot work when antidemocratic actions undermine elections themselves. Commentators increasingly decry the rule of the many by the few.

This Article argues that a vital response has been neglected. State constitutions embody a deep commitment to democracy. Unlike the federal constitution, they were drafted – and have been repeatedly rewritten and amended …


Dirty Johns: Prosecuting Prostituted Women In Pennsylvania And The Need For Reform, Mckay Lewis Oct 2020

Dirty Johns: Prosecuting Prostituted Women In Pennsylvania And The Need For Reform, Mckay Lewis

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

Prostitution is as old as human civilization itself. Throughout history, public attitudes toward prostituted women have varied greatly. But adverse consequences of the practice—usually imposed by men purchasing sexual services—have continuously been present. Prostituted women have regularly been subject to violence, discrimination, and indifference from their clients, the general public, and even law enforcement and judicial officers.

Jurisdictions can choose to adopt one of three general approaches to prostitution regulation: (1) criminalization; (2) legalization/ decriminalization; or (3) a hybrid approach known as the Nordic Model. Criminalization regimes are regularly associated with disparate treatment between prostituted women and their clients, high …


Reflections On The Effects Of Federalism On Opioid Policy, Matthew B. Lawrence Apr 2020

Reflections On The Effects Of Federalism On Opioid Policy, Matthew B. Lawrence

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

No abstract provided.


Mhpaea & Marble Cake: Parity & The Forgotten Frame Of Federalism, Taleed El-Sabawi Apr 2020

Mhpaea & Marble Cake: Parity & The Forgotten Frame Of Federalism, Taleed El-Sabawi

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

No abstract provided.


State Regulatory Responses To The Prescription Opioid Crisis: Too Much To Bear?, Lars Noah Apr 2020

State Regulatory Responses To The Prescription Opioid Crisis: Too Much To Bear?, Lars Noah

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

In order to prevent further overuse of prescription opioids, states have adopted a variety of strategies. This article summarizes the growing use of prescription drug monitoring programs, crackdowns on “pill mills,” prohibitions on the use of particularly hazardous opioids, limitations on the duration and dosage of prescribed opioids, excise taxes, physician education and patient disclosure requirements, public awareness campaigns, and drug take-back programs. Although occasionally challenged on constitutional grounds, including claims of federal preemption under the Supremacy Clause, discrimination against out-of-state businesses under the dormant Commerce Clause doctrine, and interference with rights of commercial free speech, this article evaluates the …


Safe Consumption Sites And The Perverse Dynamics Of Federalism In The Aftermath Of The War On Drugs, Deborah Ahrens Apr 2020

Safe Consumption Sites And The Perverse Dynamics Of Federalism In The Aftermath Of The War On Drugs, Deborah Ahrens

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

In this Article, I explore the complicated regulatory and federalism issues posed by creating safe consumption sites for drug users—an effort which would regulate drugs through use of a public health paradigm. This Article details the difficulties that localities pursuing such sites and other non-criminal-law responses have faced as a result of both federal and state interference. It contrasts those difficulties with the carte blanche local and state officials typically receive from federal regulators when creatively adopting new punitive policies to combat drugs. In so doing, this Article identifies systemic asymmetries of federalism that threaten drug policy reform. While traditional …


The Opioid Litigation: The Fda Is Mia, Catherine M. Sharkey Apr 2020

The Opioid Litigation: The Fda Is Mia, Catherine M. Sharkey

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

It is readily agreed that federal preemption of state tort law alters the balance between federal and state power. Federal preemption is a high-profile defense in almost all modern products liability cases. It is thus surprising to see how little attention has been given to federal preemption by courts and commentators in the opioid litigation. Opioid litigation provides a lens through which I explore the role of state and federal courts and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in striking the right balance of power. My purpose here is not to resolve the divide among the few courts that have …


Transparency Deserts, Christina Koningisor Apr 2020

Transparency Deserts, Christina Koningisor

Northwestern University Law Review

Few contest the importance of a robust transparency regime in a democratic system of government. In the United States, the “crown jewel” of this regime is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Yet despite widespread agreement about the importance of transparency in government, few are satisfied with FOIA. Since its enactment, the statute has engendered criticism from transparency advocates and critics alike for insufficiently serving the needs of both the public and the government. Legal scholars have widely documented these flaws in the federal public records law.

In contrast, scholars have paid comparatively little attention to transparency laws at the …


States’ Evolving Role In The Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, David A. Super Mar 2020

States’ Evolving Role In The Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, David A. Super

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

States have always been crucial to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly food stamps). Even though the federal government has paid virtually all the program’s benefit costs, state administration has always been indispensable for several reasons. State and local governments pay their staff considerably less than the federal government, making state administration less expensive. States already administer other important antipoverty programs, notably family cash assistance and Medicaid, allowing them to coordinate the programs and minimize repetitive activities. And states have somewhat lower, and less polarizing, political footprints than does the federal government, moderating criticism of the program. In addition, …


Conclusion: A Way Forward, Peter B. Edelman Mar 2020

Conclusion: A Way Forward, Peter B. Edelman

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Where do we go next? I have three suggestions. One is to enlarge the frame of our work on poverty and race, including a focus on the ever-widening chasm of inequality, and all of it pressing toward the center stage of national attention. A second is to consolidate our work about income, jobs, and cash assistance into a unified frame, which I call a three-legged stool. And the third is to think from a perspective of place, and what that tells us about our antipoverty work.

We need a banner, a message, a theme, a politics for ending poverty. The …


The Dormant Commerce Clause And State Clean Energy Legislation, Kevin Todd Mar 2020

The Dormant Commerce Clause And State Clean Energy Legislation, Kevin Todd

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

This Note analyzes recent litigation concerning the constitutionality of state renewable portfolio standards (RPSs) and similar environmental legislation designed to promote clean energy. It begins with a discussion of the current state of both federal and state responses to climate change. From there, it analyzes several legal challenges to state RPSs and other climate-related laws that focus on potential violations of the dormant Commerce Clause. It concludes with a brief exploration of how these cases fit the history and purpose of the dormant Commerce Clause. The Note argues that a narrow view of the doctrine is consistent with the purpose …


Say “No” To Discrimination, “Yes” To Accommodation: Why States Should Prohibit Discrimination Of Workers Who Use Cannabis For Medical Purposes, Anne Marie Lofaso, Lakyn D. Cecil Jan 2020

Say “No” To Discrimination, “Yes” To Accommodation: Why States Should Prohibit Discrimination Of Workers Who Use Cannabis For Medical Purposes, Anne Marie Lofaso, Lakyn D. Cecil

Seattle University Law Review

This Article addresses the question of how the law should treat medical cannabis in the employment context. Using Colorado as a primary example, we argue that states such as Colorado should amend their constitutions and legislate to provide employment protections for employees who are registered medical cannabis cardholders or registered caregivers.

Part I briefly traces the legal regulation of cannabis from an unregulated medicine known as cannabis to a highly regulated illicit substance known as marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act. Our travail through this history reveals, unsurprisingly, an increasing demonization of cannabis throughout the twentieth century. That socio-legal demonization …


Law, Race, And The Epistemology Of Ignorance, George A. Martinez Jan 2020

Law, Race, And The Epistemology Of Ignorance, George A. Martinez

Faculty Journal Articles and Book Chapters

Philosophers and other theorists have developed the field of epistemology which is the study of human knowledge. Critical race theorists have begun to explore how epistemological theory and insights may illuminate the study of race, including the analysis of race and the law. Such use of epistemology is appropriate because theoretical work on knowledge can be used to advance one of the key goals of critical race theory which is to understand how a regime of white supremacy and its subordination of people of color have been created and maintained in America. In this regard, philosophers and other theorists have …


The Law And Policy Of Child Maltreatment, Frank Vandervort Jan 2020

The Law And Policy Of Child Maltreatment, Frank Vandervort

Book Chapters

Each year in the United States some four million children are reported to child protective services and hundreds of thousands of children are confirmed victims of maltreatment. This chapter provides a brief overview of the civil and criminal law’s response to child abuse and neglect. It summarizes the major federal statutes that provide funding to the states to support both civil and criminal law responses to maltreatment. It discusses the division of responsible for responding to child maltreatment between the federal and state governments (federalism). It also provides a summary of the constitutional framework for handling both civil and criminal …


Does The Attorney General Have A Duty To Defend Her Legislature’S Statutes? A Comment On The Reference Re Genetic Non-Discrimination Act, Andrew Martin Jan 2020

Does The Attorney General Have A Duty To Defend Her Legislature’S Statutes? A Comment On The Reference Re Genetic Non-Discrimination Act, Andrew Martin

Articles, Book Chapters, & Popular Press

The Reference Re Genetic Non-Discrimination Act was unusual because the Attorney General for Canada argued that federal legislation was unconstitutional. In this comment, I explore the implications of this choice for the role of the Attorney General and her relationship with Parliament. I argue that the Attorney General has a duty not to defend legislation, including legislation that began as a private member’s bill, that she reasonably believes to be unconstitutional – and that if Parliament wants to defend such legislation, it should do so itself instead of relying on the Attorney General. If Parliament does not do so, the …


Neglecting Nationalism, Gil Seinfeld May 2019

Neglecting Nationalism, Gil Seinfeld

Articles

Federalism is a system of government that calls for the division of power between a central authority and member states. It is designed to secure benefits that flow from centralization and from devolution, as well as benefits that accrue from a simultaneous commitment to both. A student of modern American federalism, however, might have a very different impression, for significant swaths of the case law and scholarly commentary on the subject neglect the centralizing, nationalist side of the federal balance. This claim may come as a surprise, since it is obviously the case that our national government has become immensely …


Collected Lectures And Talks On Corporate Law, Legal Theory, History, Finance, And Governance, William W. Bratton Feb 2019

Collected Lectures And Talks On Corporate Law, Legal Theory, History, Finance, And Governance, William W. Bratton

Seattle University Law Review

A collection of eighteen speeches and lectures, from 2003 to 2018, discussing and expanding on the writings and theories of Adolf Berle and Gardiner Means.


Federalism And The End Of Obamacare, Nicholas Bagley Apr 2017

Federalism And The End Of Obamacare, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

Federalism has become a watchword in the acrimonious debate over a possible replacement for the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Missing from that debate, however, is a theoretically grounded and empirically informed understanding of how best to allocate power between the federal government and the states. For health reform, the conventional arguments in favor of a national solution have little resonance: federal intervention will not avoid a race to the bottom, prevent externalities, or protect minority groups from state discrimination. Instead, federal action is necessary to overcome the states’ fiscal limitations: their inability to deficit-spend and the constraints that federal law …


Free Agency: The Constitutionality Of Methods That Influence A Presidential Elector’S Ability To Exercise Personal Judgment, Zachary J. Shapiro Jan 2017

Free Agency: The Constitutionality Of Methods That Influence A Presidential Elector’S Ability To Exercise Personal Judgment, Zachary J. Shapiro

Journal of Law and Policy

When the Constitution of the United States went into effect on March 4, 1789, it established a new, hybrid form of government. As such, it created a complex and multifaceted process of electing our nation’s chief executive. Most notably, it granted states the power to choose a slate of presidential electors to debate the qualifications of the candidates selected by the voters. In recent history, however, certain states have established laws that severely limit the ability of presidential electors to exercise their right to vote for the candidates that they believe to be the best choice to sit in the …


Free Agency: The Constitutionality Of Methods That Influence A Presidential Elector’S Ability To Exercise Personal Judgment, Zachary J. Shapiro Jan 2017

Free Agency: The Constitutionality Of Methods That Influence A Presidential Elector’S Ability To Exercise Personal Judgment, Zachary J. Shapiro

Journal of Law and Policy

When the Constitution of the United States went into effect on March 4, 1789, it established a new, hybrid form of government. As such, it created a complex and multifaceted process of electing our nation’s chief executive. Most notably, it granted states the power to choose a slate of presidential electors to debate the qualifications of the candidates selected by the voters. In recent history, however, certain states have established laws that severely limit the ability of presidential electors to exercise their right to vote for the candidates that they believe to be the best choice to sit in the …


Pushing An End To Sanctuary Cities: Will It Happen?, Raina Bhatt Oct 2016

Pushing An End To Sanctuary Cities: Will It Happen?, Raina Bhatt

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Sanctuary jurisdictions refer to city, town, and state governments (collectively, localities or local governments) that have passed provisions to limit their enforcement of federal immigration laws. Such local governments execute limiting provisions in order to bolster community cooperation, prevent racial discrimination, focus on local priorities for enforcement, or even to a show a local policy that differs from federal policy. The provisions are in the forms of executive orders, municipal ordinances, and state resolutions. Additionally, the scope of the provisions vary by locality: some prohibit law enforcement from asking about immigration status, while others prohibit the use of state resources …