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Delegating Or Divesting?, Philip A. Hamburger Jan 2021

Delegating Or Divesting?, Philip A. Hamburger

Faculty Scholarship

A gratifying feature of recent scholarship on administrative power is the resurgence of interest in the Founding. Even the defenders of administrative power hark back to the Constitution’s early history – most frequently to justify delegations of legislative power. But the past offers cold comfort for such delegation.

A case in point is Delegation at the Founding by Professors Julian Davis Mortenson and Nicholas Bagley. Not content to defend the Supreme Court’s current nondelegation doctrine, the article employs history to challenge the doctrine – arguing that the Constitution does not limit Congress’s delegation of legislative power. But the article ...


Power Transitions In A Troubled Democracy, Peter L. Strauss, Gillian E. Metzger Jan 2021

Power Transitions In A Troubled Democracy, Peter L. Strauss, Gillian E. Metzger

Faculty Scholarship

Written as our contribution to a festschrift for the noted Italian administrative law scholar Marco D’Alberti, this essay addresses transition between Presidents Trump and Biden, in the context of political power transitions in the United States more generally. Although the Trump-Biden transition was marked by extraordinary behaviors and events, we thought even the transition’s mundane elements might prove interesting to those for whom transitions occur in a parliamentary context. There, succession can happen quickly once an election’s results are known, and happens with the new political government immediately formed and in office. The layer of a new ...


Slavery's Constitution: Rethinking The Federal Consensus, Maeve Glass Jan 2021

Slavery's Constitution: Rethinking The Federal Consensus, Maeve Glass

Faculty Scholarship

For at least half a century, scholars of the early American Constitution have noted the archival prominence of a doctrine known as the “federal consensus.” This doctrine instructed that Congress had no power to interfere with the institution of slavery in the states where it existed. Despite its ubiquity in the records, our understanding of how and why this doctrine emerged is hazy at best. Working from a conceptual map of America’s founding that features thirteen local governments coalescing into two feuding sections of North and South, commentators have tended to explain the federal consensus either as a vestige ...


Anti-Modalities, David E. Pozen, Adam Samaha Jan 2021

Anti-Modalities, David E. Pozen, Adam Samaha

Faculty Scholarship

Constitutional argument runs on the rails of “modalities.” These are the accepted categories of reasoning used to make claims about the content of supreme law. Some of the modalities, such as ethical and prudential arguments, seem strikingly open ended at first sight. Their contours come into clearer view, however, when we attend to the kinds of claims that are not made by constitutional interpreters – the analytical and rhetorical moves that are familiar in debates over public policy and political morality but are considered out of bounds in debates over constitutional meaning. In this Article, we seek to identify the “anti-modalities ...


Political Wine In A Judicial Bottle: Justice Sotomayor's Surprising Concurrence In Aurelius, Christina D. Ponsa-Kraus Jan 2020

Political Wine In A Judicial Bottle: Justice Sotomayor's Surprising Concurrence In Aurelius, Christina D. Ponsa-Kraus

Faculty Scholarship

For seventy years, Puerto Ricans have been bitterly divided over how to decolonize the island, a U.S. territory. Many favor Puerto Rico’s admission into statehood. But many others support a different kind of relationship with the United States: they believe that in 1952, Puerto Rico entered into a “compact” with the United States that transformed it from a territory into a “commonwealth,” and they insist that “commonwealth” status made Puerto Rico a separate sovereign in permanent union with the United States. Statehood supporters argue that there is no compact, nor should there be: it is neither constitutionally possible ...


Strengthening The U.S.-Japan Alliance: Pathways For Bridging Law And Policy, Columbia Law School, 2020, Nobuhisa Ishizuka, Masahiro Kurosaki, Matthew C. Waxman Jan 2020

Strengthening The U.S.-Japan Alliance: Pathways For Bridging Law And Policy, Columbia Law School, 2020, Nobuhisa Ishizuka, Masahiro Kurosaki, Matthew C. Waxman

Faculty Scholarship

During the three years leading up to this year ’s 60th anniversary of the signing of the 1960 U.S.-Japan Security Treaty, a series of workshops were held under the joint sponsorship of Columbia Law School’s Center for Japanese Legal Studies and the National Defense Academy of Japan’s Center for Global Security. Bringing together experts in international law and political science primarily from the United States and Japan, the workshops examined how differing approaches to use of force and understandings of individual and collective self-defense in the two countries might adversely affect their alliance.

The workshop participants ...


Edward Snowden, National Security Whistleblowing, And Civil Disobedience, David E. Pozen Jan 2019

Edward Snowden, National Security Whistleblowing, And Civil Disobedience, David E. Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

No recent whistleblower has been more lionized or vilified than Edward Snowden. He has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and denounced as a "total traitor" deserving of the death penalty. In these debates, Snowden's defenders tend to portray him as a civil disobedient. Yet for a range of reasons, Snowden's situation does not map neatly onto traditional theories of civil disobedience. The same holds true for most cases of national security whistleblowing.

The contradictory and confused responses that these cases provoke, this essay suggests, are not just the product of polarized politics or insufficient information. Rather ...


Preemption And Commandeering Without Congress, Jessica Bulman-Pozen Jan 2018

Preemption And Commandeering Without Congress, Jessica Bulman-Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

In a time of polarization, states may introduce salutary pluralism into an executive-dominated regime. With partisan divisions sidelining Congress, states are at once principal implementers and principal opponents of presidential policies. As polarization makes states more central to national policymaking, however, it also poses new threats to their ability to act. This Essay cautions against recent efforts to preempt state control over state officials and to require states to follow other states’ policies, using sanctuary jurisdictions and the pending federal Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act as examples.


Federalism All The Way Up: State Standing And "The New Process Federalism", Jessica Bulman-Pozen Jan 2017

Federalism All The Way Up: State Standing And "The New Process Federalism", Jessica Bulman-Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

This commentary considers what federalism all the way up means for Gerken’s proposed new process federalism. The state-federal integration she documents underscores why judicial policing of “conditions for federal-state bargaining” cannot be limited to state-federal relations in the traditional sense. It must extend to state challenges to the allocation and exercise of authority within the federal government. The new process federalism would therefore do well to address when states will have standing to bring such cases in federal court. After Part I describes contemporary federalism-all-the-way-up litigation, Part II suggests that Gerken’s “Federalism 3.0” complicates both traditional parens ...


Vermeule Unbound, Philip A. Hamburger Jan 2016

Vermeule Unbound, Philip A. Hamburger

Faculty Scholarship

My book asks Is Administrative Law Unlawful? Adrian Vermeule answers “No.” In support of his position, he claims that my book does not really make arguments from the U.S. Constitution, that it foolishly denounces administrative power for lacking legislative authorization, that it grossly misunderstands this power and the underlying judicial doctrines, and ultimately that I argue “like a child.”

My book actually presents a new conception of administrative power, its history, and its unconstitutionality; as Vermeule has noted elsewhere, it offers a new paradigm. Readers therefore should take seriously the arguments against the book. They also, however, should recognize ...


Early Prerogative And Administrative Power: A Response To Paul Craig, Philip A. Hamburger Jan 2016

Early Prerogative And Administrative Power: A Response To Paul Craig, Philip A. Hamburger

Faculty Scholarship

What does English experience imply about American constitutional law? My book, Is Administrative Law Unlawful?, argues that federal administrative power generally is unconstitutional. In supporting this conclusion, the book observes that eighteenth-century Americans adopted their constitutions not only with their eyes on the future, but also looking over their shoulder at the past – especially the English past. This much should not be controversial. There remain, however, all sorts of questions about how to understand the English history and its relevance for early Americans.

In opposition to my claims about American law, Paul Craig lobs three critiques from across the pond ...


Executive Federalism Comes To America, Jessica Bulman-Pozen Jan 2016

Executive Federalism Comes To America, Jessica Bulman-Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

This Article proposes a different way of thinking about contemporary American governance, looking to an established foreign practice. Executive federalism – “processes of intergovernmental negotiation that are dominated by the executives of the different governments within the federal system” – is pervasive in parliamentary federations, such as Canada, Australia, and the European Union. Given the American separation of powers arrangement, executive federalism has been thought absent, even “impossible,” in the United States. But the partisan dynamics that have gridlocked Congress and empowered both federal and state executives have generated a distinctive American variant.

Viewing American law and politics through the lens of ...


Separations Of Wealth: Inequality And The Erosion Of Checks And Balances, Kate Andrias Jan 2015

Separations Of Wealth: Inequality And The Erosion Of Checks And Balances, Kate Andrias

Faculty Scholarship

American government is dysfunctional: Gridlock, filibusters, and expanding presidential power, everyone seems to agree, threaten our basic system of constitutional governance. Who, or what, is to blame? In the standard account, the fault lies with the increasing polarization of our political parties. That standard story, however, ignores an important culprit: Concentrated wealth and its organization to achieve political ends. The only way to understand our current constitutional predicament – and to rectify it – is to pay more attention to the role that organized wealth plays in our system of checks and balances.

This Article shows that the increasing concentration of wealth ...


Partisan Federalism, Jessica Bulman-Pozen Jan 2014

Partisan Federalism, Jessica Bulman-Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

Among the questions that vex the federalism literature are why states check the federal government and whether Americans identify with the states as well as the nation. This Article argues that partisanship supplies the core of an answer to both questions. Competition between today’s ideologically coherent, polarized parties leads state actors to make demands for autonomy, to enact laws rejected by the federal government, and to fight federal programs from within. States thus check the federal government by channeling partisan conflict through federalism’s institutional framework. Partisanship also recasts the longstanding debate about whether Americans identify with the states ...


The Republic Of Choosing: A Behaviorist Goes To Washington, William H. Simon Jan 2013

The Republic Of Choosing: A Behaviorist Goes To Washington, William H. Simon

Faculty Scholarship

Cass Sunstein’s book Simpler recounts the author’s efforts during his tenure in the first Obama administration to apply the policy tools he helped derive from behavioral economics. In this review, I suggest that, while Sunstein reports some notable achievements, he exaggerates the utility of the behaviorist toolkit. Behaviorist-inspired interventions are marginal to most of the largest policy problems, and they played little role in the Obama administration’s most important initiatives. The book also reflects a misguided political strategy.


Cultivating Justice For The Working Poor: Clinical Representation Of Unemployment Claimants, Colleen F. Shanahan Jan 2011

Cultivating Justice For The Working Poor: Clinical Representation Of Unemployment Claimants, Colleen F. Shanahan

Faculty Scholarship

The combination of current economic conditions and recent changes in the United States' welfare system makes representation of unemployment insurance claimants by clinic students a timely learning opportunity. While unemployment insurance claimants often share similarities with student attorneys, they are unable to access justice as easily as student attorneys, and as a result, face the risk of severe poverty. Clinical representation of unemployment claimants is a rich opportunity for students to experience making a difference for a client, and to understand the issues of poverty and justice that these clients experience along the way. These cases reveal that larger lessons ...


The Contradictions Of Mainstream Constitutional Theory, Kimberlé W. Crenshaw, Gary Peller Jan 1998

The Contradictions Of Mainstream Constitutional Theory, Kimberlé W. Crenshaw, Gary Peller

Faculty Scholarship

For the last four decades, some form of "process" theory has dominated conventional constitutional theory, on the bench and in the academy. The organizing, usually implicit, background assumption is that the exercise of governmental power – whether by legislatures or courts – is to be tested for normative legitimacy against a set of procedures. Writing as critics of the basic framework of process theory, Professors Kimberli Crenshaw and Gary Peller discuss the contributions and constraints of a proceduralist constitutional law discourse. In light of direct democracy initiatives claiming the power of legislation, and a substantively conservative judiciary defining the "law," Professors Crenshaw ...