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Democracy And Disenchantment, Ashraf Ahmed Jan 2022

Democracy And Disenchantment, Ashraf Ahmed

Faculty Scholarship

During the latter half of the Trump presidency, as it became increasingly clear that the Supreme Court would remain solidly conservative for the foreseeable future, Samuel Moyn and Ryan Doerfler declared war. In popular and scholarly venues, they have steadily built a case for curtailing the power of the nation’s highest court. Their arguments have been both pragmatic and principled. They have underlined, for instance, the risks the Roberts Court poses to progressive goals such as addressing climate change1 and granting student debt relief. More broadly, they object to a “supra-democratic court exercising its current, expansive legislative veto.” For Doerfler …


A Court Of Two Minds, Bert I. Huang Jan 2022

A Court Of Two Minds, Bert I. Huang

Faculty Scholarship

What do the Justices think they’re doing? They seem to act like appeals judges, who address questions of law as needed to reach a decision — and yet also like curators, who single out only certain questions as worthy of the Supreme Court’s attention. Most of the time, the Court’s “appellate mind” and its “curator mind” are aligned because the Justices choose to hear cases where a curated question of interest is also central to the outcome. But not always. In some cases, the Court discovers that it cannot reach — or no longer wishes to reach — the originally …


Re-Reading Chevron, Thomas W. Merrill Jan 2021

Re-Reading Chevron, Thomas W. Merrill

Faculty Scholarship

Though increasingly disfavored by the Supreme Court, Chevron remains central to administrative law doctrine. This Article suggests a way for the Court to reformulate the Chevron doctrine without overruling the Chevron decision. Through careful attention to the language of Chevron itself, the Court can honor the decision’s underlying value of harnessing comparative institutional advantage in judicial review, while setting aside a highly selective reading that unduly narrows judicial review. This re-reading would put the Chevron doctrine – and with it, an entire branch of administrative law – on firmer footing.


Rbg: Nonprofit Entrepreneur, David M. Schizer Jan 2021

Rbg: Nonprofit Entrepreneur, David M. Schizer

Faculty Scholarship

It is exceedingly rare for one person to change the world almost single-handedly, but Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was one of those people. Even before her distinguished judicial career, RBG was a trailblazing advocate for women’s rights during the 1970s. She persuaded the Supreme Court that gender discrimination violates the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution, winning five of the six cases she argued there. To lead this historic effort, RBG served as general counsel of the ACLU and as co-founder and the first director of its Women’s Rights Project from 1972 until she became a judge in 1980. …


Long Live The Common Law Of Copyright!: Georgia V. Public.Resource.Org., Inc. And The Debate Over Judicial Role In Copyright, Shyamkrishna Balganesh Jan 2021

Long Live The Common Law Of Copyright!: Georgia V. Public.Resource.Org., Inc. And The Debate Over Judicial Role In Copyright, Shyamkrishna Balganesh

Faculty Scholarship

In Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org, Inc., the Supreme Court resurrected a nineteenth-century copyright doctrine – the government edicts doctrine – and applied it to statutory annotations prepared by a legislative agency. While the substance of the decision has serious impli­cations for due process and the rule of law, the Court’s treatment of the doctrine recognized an invigorated role for courts in the development of copyright law through the use of principled reasoning. In expounding the doctrine, the Court announced a vision for the judicial role in copy­right adjudication that is at odds with the dominant approach under the Copyright …


Presidential Commission On The Supreme Court Of The United States Final Report, Michelle Adams, Kate Andrias, Jack Balkin, William Baude, Bob Bauer, Elise Boddie, Guy-Uriel E. Charles, Andrew Manuel Crespo, Walter Dellinger, Justin Driver, Richard Fallon Jr., Caroline Fredrickson, Heather Gerken, Nancy Gertner, Thomas B. Griffith, Tara Leigh Grove, Bert I. Huang, Sherrilyn Ifill, Olatunde C.A. Johnson, Michael S. Kang, Alison L. Lacroix, Margaret H. Lemos, David F. Levi, Trevor W. Morrison, Richard H. Pildes, Michael D. Ramsey, Cristina M. Rodríguez, Kermit Roosevelt, Bertrall Ross, David A. Strauss, Laurence H. Tribe, Michael Waldman, Adam White, Keith E. Whittington Jan 2021

Presidential Commission On The Supreme Court Of The United States Final Report, Michelle Adams, Kate Andrias, Jack Balkin, William Baude, Bob Bauer, Elise Boddie, Guy-Uriel E. Charles, Andrew Manuel Crespo, Walter Dellinger, Justin Driver, Richard Fallon Jr., Caroline Fredrickson, Heather Gerken, Nancy Gertner, Thomas B. Griffith, Tara Leigh Grove, Bert I. Huang, Sherrilyn Ifill, Olatunde C.A. Johnson, Michael S. Kang, Alison L. Lacroix, Margaret H. Lemos, David F. Levi, Trevor W. Morrison, Richard H. Pildes, Michael D. Ramsey, Cristina M. Rodríguez, Kermit Roosevelt, Bertrall Ross, David A. Strauss, Laurence H. Tribe, Michael Waldman, Adam White, Keith E. Whittington

Faculty Scholarship

On April 9, 2021, President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. issued Executive Order 14023 establishing this Commission, to consist of “individuals having experience with and knowledge of the Federal judiciary and the Supreme Court of the United States.” The Order charged the Commission with producing a report for the President that addresses three sets of questions. First, the Report should include “[a]n account of the contemporary commentary and debate about the role and operation of the Supreme Court in our constitutional system and about the functioning of the constitutional process by which the President nominates and, by and with the advice …


Presidential Progress On Climate Change: Will The Courts Interfere With What Needs To Be Done To Save Our Planet?, Michael B. Gerrard Jan 2021

Presidential Progress On Climate Change: Will The Courts Interfere With What Needs To Be Done To Save Our Planet?, Michael B. Gerrard

Faculty Scholarship

The Biden Administration is undertaking numerous actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition away from fossil fuels as part of the fight against climate change. Many of these actions are likely to be challenged in court. This paper describes the various legal theories that are likely to be used in these challenges, assesses their prospects of success given the current composition of the Supreme Court, and suggests ways to minimize the risks.


Professor Justice Ginsburg: Justice Ginsburg's Love Of Procedure And Jurisdiction, Zachary D. Tripp, Gillian E. Metzger Jan 2021

Professor Justice Ginsburg: Justice Ginsburg's Love Of Procedure And Jurisdiction, Zachary D. Tripp, Gillian E. Metzger

Faculty Scholarship

As two of Justice Ginsburg’s former clerks, we are keenly aware of the popular image of the Justice as the “Notorious RBG”: the champion of women’s rights and the forceful dissenter, strongly disputing the Roberts Court’s conservative turn and articulating the case for the liberal New Deal constitutional vision, with its commitment to protecting individual rights and broad view of national power.

This she did, powerfully and eloquently. But to understand Justice Ginsburg – the person, the Justice, and her jurisprudence – it is also critical to account for her role as the Supreme Court’s leading civil procedure and federal …


Boynton V. Virginia And The Anxieties Of The Modern African-American Customer, Amber Baylor Jan 2020

Boynton V. Virginia And The Anxieties Of The Modern African-American Customer, Amber Baylor

Faculty Scholarship

In 1958, Bruce Boynton was arrested for ordering food in a Whites-Only diner and charged with criminal trespass. Sixty years later, African Americans continue to face arrest and threat of arrest in commercial establishments based on discriminatory trespass claims. When store owners or employees decide to exclude would-be patrons from their establishment for discriminatory reasons, both overt and implicit, they rely on the police to enforce this form of discrimination. This article considers the legacy of Boynton v. Virginia, particularly the resonance of Boynton’s unaddressed claim, that the state enforcement of discriminatory trespass allegations is an Equal Protection …


The Roberts Court And Administrative Law, Gillian E. Metzger Jan 2020

The Roberts Court And Administrative Law, Gillian E. Metzger

Faculty Scholarship

Administrative law today is marked by the legal equivalent of mortal combat, where foundational principles are fiercely disputed and basic doctrines are offered up for “execution.” Several factors have led to administrative law’s currently fraught status. Increasingly bold presidential assertions of executive power are one, with President Trump and President Obama before him using presidential control over administration to advance controversial policies that failed to get congressional sanction. In the process, they have deeply enmeshed administrative agencies in political battles – indeed, for President Trump, administrative agencies are the political battle, as his administration has waged an all-out war on …


Memoriam: Justice John Paul Stevens, John G. Roberts Jr., David Barron, Alison J. Nathan, Christopher L. Eisgruber, Olatunde C.A. Johnson, Eduardo M. Peñalver Jan 2020

Memoriam: Justice John Paul Stevens, John G. Roberts Jr., David Barron, Alison J. Nathan, Christopher L. Eisgruber, Olatunde C.A. Johnson, Eduardo M. Peñalver

Faculty Scholarship

When Justice John Paul Stevens passed away on July 16, 2019, I was flooded with personal memories of my year clerking for him. The standard words of comfort when someone dies are that they will live on through the individuals that knew and loved them. Justice Stevens sat on the Supreme Court for more than three decades; his loss would be felt beyond those who knew him personally. I wondered how history would remember him.


Covid-19 And The Law: Elections, Richard Briffault Jan 2020

Covid-19 And The Law: Elections, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

With one Supreme Court decision, lower federal and state court decisions, pending litigation, and proposals around the country for major changes in how elections are conducted, COVID-19 has already had and likely will continue to have a significant impact on election law.

The discussion that follows proceeds in two parts. The first addresses the initial consequences of COVID-19 as an electoral emergency. Voters were due to go to the polls in states around the country just as the pandemic was gathering force and governors and mayors were calling on people to stay at home and avoid large gatherings – which, …


Speech And Exercise By Private Individuals And Organizations, Kent Greenawalt Jan 2019

Speech And Exercise By Private Individuals And Organizations, Kent Greenawalt

Faculty Scholarship

A central issue about redundancy concerns how far the exercise of religion is simply a form of speech that is, and should be, constitutionally protected only to the extent that reaches speech generally. Insofar as a constitutional analysis leaves flexibility, we have questions about wise legislative choices. To consider these issues carefully, we need to have a sense of what counts as relevant speech and the exercise of religion. That is the focus of this article.

It addresses the basic categorization of what counts as “speech” for freedom of speech and what counts as religious exercise when each is engaged …


Death By Stereotype: Race, Ethnicity, And California’S Failure To Implement Furman’S Narrowing Requirement, Catherine M. Grosso, Jeffrey A. Fagan, Michael Laurence, David C. Baldus, George W. Woodworth, Richard Newell Jan 2019

Death By Stereotype: Race, Ethnicity, And California’S Failure To Implement Furman’S Narrowing Requirement, Catherine M. Grosso, Jeffrey A. Fagan, Michael Laurence, David C. Baldus, George W. Woodworth, Richard Newell

Faculty Scholarship

This Article examines the possible racial and ethnic implications of California’s expansive death penalty statute in light of the Eighth Amendment’s requirement that each state statute narrow the subclass of offenders on whom a death sentence may be imposed. The narrowing requirement derives from the holding in Furman v. Georgia over forty-five years ago, when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that existing death penalty statutes violated the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishments. Citing statistics demonstrating arbitrary and capricious application of capital punishment, a majority of the Justices concluded that a death sentencing scheme is unconstitutional if it …


Jurisdiction Stripping Circa 2020: What The Dialogue (Still) Has To Teach Us, Henry P. Monaghan Jan 2019

Jurisdiction Stripping Circa 2020: What The Dialogue (Still) Has To Teach Us, Henry P. Monaghan

Faculty Scholarship

Since its publication in 1953, Henry Hart’s famous article, The Power of Congress to Limit the Jurisdiction of Federal Courts: An Exercise in Dialectic, subsequently referred to as simply “The Dialogue,” has served as the leading scholarly treatment of congressional control over the federal courts. Now in its seventh decade, much has changed since Hart first wrote. This Article examines what lessons The Dialogue still holds for its readers circa 2020.


Beyond The Bosses' Constitution: The First Amendment And Class Entrenchment, Jedediah S. Purdy Jan 2018

Beyond The Bosses' Constitution: The First Amendment And Class Entrenchment, Jedediah S. Purdy

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court’s “weaponized” First Amendment has been its strongest antiregulatory tool in recent decades, slashing campaign-finance regulation, public-sector union financing, and pharmaceutical regulation, and threatening a broader remit. Along with others, I have previously criticized these developments as a “new Lochnerism.” In this Essay, part of a Columbia Law Review Symposium, I press beyond these criticisms to diagnose the ideological outlook of these opinions and to propose an alternative. The leading decisions of the antiregulatory First Amendment often associate free speech with a vision of market efficiency; but, I argue, closer to their heart is antistatist fear of entrenchment …


A Private Law Court In A Public Law System, Jamal Greene Jan 2018

A Private Law Court In A Public Law System, Jamal Greene

Faculty Scholarship

The U.S. Supreme Court’s approach to human rights is a global outlier. In conceiving of rights adjudication in categorical terms rather than embracing proportionality analysis, the Court limits its ability to make the kinds of qualitative judgments about rights application required to adjudicate claims of disparate impact, social and economic rights, and horizontal effects, among others. This approach, derivative of a private-law model of dispute resolution, sits in tension with the rights claims typical of a pluralistic jurisdiction with a mature rights culture, in which litigants more often disagree, reasonably, about the scope of rights rather than deny that others …


The Supreme Court, Judicial Elections, And Dark Money, Richard Briffault Jan 2018

The Supreme Court, Judicial Elections, And Dark Money, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

Judges, even when popularly elected, are not representatives; they are not agents for their voters, nor should they take voter preferences into account in adjudicating cases. However, popularly elected judges are representatives for some election law purposes. Unlike other elected officials, judges are not politicians. But judges are policy-makers. Judicial elections are subject to the same constitutional doctrines that govern voting on legislators, executives, and ballot propositions. Except when they are not. The same First Amendment doctrine that protects campaign speech in legislative, executive, and ballot proposition elections applies to campaign speech in judicial elections – but not in quite …


Maximinimalism, Jamal Greene Jan 2016

Maximinimalism, Jamal Greene

Faculty Scholarship

When John Roberts became Chief Justice of the United States more than a decade ago, commenters frequently described him as a minimalist. Although Chief Justice Roberts himself resisted this label, he fairly inspired it by advocating for more consensus among his colleagues and by famously recounting to a Georgetown Law Commencement audience his view that “[i]f it is not necessary to decide more to dispose of a case ... it is necessary not to decide more.” The suggestion that the Court decide significant issues one case at a time recalls the work of Cass Sunstein, the American academy’s most articulate …


Juvenile Sentencing Reform In A Constitutional Framework, Elizabeth S. Scott, Thomas Grisso, Marsha Levick, Laurence Steinberg Jan 2016

Juvenile Sentencing Reform In A Constitutional Framework, Elizabeth S. Scott, Thomas Grisso, Marsha Levick, Laurence Steinberg

Faculty Scholarship

In the past decade, the Supreme Court has transformed the constitutional landscape of juvenile crime regulation. In three strongly worded opinions, the Court held that imposing harsh criminal sentences on juvenile offenders violates the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. Roper v Simmons in 2005 prohibited the imposition of the death penalty for a crime committed by a juvenile. Five years later, Graham v. Florida held that no juvenile could be sentenced to life without the possibility of parole (LWOP) for a nonhomicide offense. Then in 2012, Miller v. Alabama struck down statutes that required courts to sentence …


Active Avoidance: The Modern Supreme Court And Legal Change, Neal Kumar Katyal, Thomas P. Schmidt Jan 2015

Active Avoidance: The Modern Supreme Court And Legal Change, Neal Kumar Katyal, Thomas P. Schmidt

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court in the last few years has resolved some of the most divisive and consequential cases before it by employing the same maneuver: construing statutes to avoid constitutional difficulty. Although the Court generally justifies the avoidance canon as a form of judicial restraint, these recent decisions have used the canon to camouflage acts of judicial aggression in both the statutory and constitutional spheres. In particular, the Court has adopted dubious readings of federal statutes that would have been unthinkable in the canon’s absence. We call this move the “rewriting power.” The canon has also been used to articulate …


Hobby Lobby: Its Flawed Interpretive Techniques And Standards Of Application, Kent Greenawalt Jan 2015

Hobby Lobby: Its Flawed Interpretive Techniques And Standards Of Application, Kent Greenawalt

Faculty Scholarship

At the end of June 2014, the Supreme Court decided one of the most publicized controversies of decades. In a decision covering two cases, widely referred to as Hobby Lobby, the Court held that closely held for-profit corporations, based on their owners' religious convictions, have a right under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) to decline to provide employees with insurance that covers contraceptive devices that may prevent a fertilized egg "from developing any further by inhibiting its attachment to the uterus."

The result has been widely approved by those who favor an extensive scope for religious liberty and …


The Supreme Court And The Transformation Of Juvenile Sentencing, Elizabeth S. Scott, Thomas Grisso, Marsha Levick, Laurence Steinberg Jan 2015

The Supreme Court And The Transformation Of Juvenile Sentencing, Elizabeth S. Scott, Thomas Grisso, Marsha Levick, Laurence Steinberg

Faculty Scholarship

In the past decade, the Supreme Court has transformed the constitutional landscape of juvenile crime regulation. In three strongly worded opinions, the Court held that imposing harsh criminal sentences on juvenile offenders violates the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. In combination, these cases create a special status for juveniles under Eighth Amendment doctrine as a category of offenders whose culpability is mitigated by their youth and immaturity, even for the most serious offenses. The Court also emphasized that juveniles are more likely to reform than adult offenders, and that most should be given a meaningful opportunity to …


Anticipatory Remedies For Takings, Thomas W. Merrill Jan 2015

Anticipatory Remedies For Takings, Thomas W. Merrill

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court has rendered two lines of decisions about the remedies available for a violation of the Takings Clause. One line holds that courts have no authority to enter anticipatory decrees in takings cases if the claimant can obtain compensation elsewhere. The other line, which includes three of the Court's most recent takings cases, results in the entry of an anticipatory decree about takings liability. This Essay argues that the second line is the correct one. Courts should be allowed to enter declaratory or other anticipatory judgments about takings liability, as long as they respect the limited nature of …


Correcting Criminal Justice Through Collective Experience Rigorously Examined, James S. Liebman, David Mattern Jan 2014

Correcting Criminal Justice Through Collective Experience Rigorously Examined, James S. Liebman, David Mattern

Faculty Scholarship

Federal and state law confers broad discretion on courts to administer the criminal laws, impose powerful penalties, and leave serious criminal behavior unpunished. Each time an appellate court reviews a criminal verdict, it performs an important systemic function of regulating the exercise of that power. Trial courts do the same when, for example, they admit or exclude evidence generated by government investigators. For decades, judicial decisions of this sort have been guided by case law made during the Supreme Court's Criminal Procedure Revolution of the 1960s and 1970s. It is becoming increasingly clear, however, that the rule-bound, essentially bureaucratic regulatory …


The Supreme Court As A Constitutional Court, Jamal Greene Jan 2014

The Supreme Court As A Constitutional Court, Jamal Greene

Faculty Scholarship

Political institutions are always works in progress. Their practical duties and aims as instruments of governance may not always match their constitutional blueprints or historical roles. Political offices might not always have the power to do what their constituent officers either need or want to do. A polity's assessment of whether the desired power is a need or a want may indeed mark a boundary between law and politics in the domain of institutional structure. The law gives, or is interpreted to give, political organs the tools they need to function effectively. They must fight for the rest.


Symposium Honoring The Advocacy, Scholarship, And Jurisprudence Of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Introduction, Katherine M. Franke Jan 2013

Symposium Honoring The Advocacy, Scholarship, And Jurisprudence Of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Introduction, Katherine M. Franke

Faculty Scholarship

I want to welcome back Justice Ginsburg to Columbia Law School. She has been a frequent visitor since her time here as a student in the late 1950s and again as a member of our faculty in the 1970s. I know she knows, but it is worth reiterating that she always has a home here at Columbia.


"Children Are Different": Constitutional Values And Justice Policy, Elizabeth S. Scott Jan 2013

"Children Are Different": Constitutional Values And Justice Policy, Elizabeth S. Scott

Faculty Scholarship

This essay explores the importance for Eighth Amendment jurisprudence and for juvenile crime regulation of Miller v. Alabama (2012) and two earlier Supreme Court opinions rejecting harsh sentences for juveniles. It argues that the Court has broken new ground in defining juveniles as a category of offenders who are subject to special Eighth Amendment protections. In Miller and in Graham v. Florida (2010) particularly, the Court has applied to juveniles' non-capital sentences the rigorous proportionality review that, for adults, has been reserved for death sentences. The essay then turns to the implications of the opinions for juvenile crime policy, arguing …


Significant Entanglements: A Framework For The Civil Consequences Of Criminal Convictions, Colleen F. Shanahan Jan 2012

Significant Entanglements: A Framework For The Civil Consequences Of Criminal Convictions, Colleen F. Shanahan

Faculty Scholarship

A significant and growing portion of the U.S. population is or has recently been in prison. Nearly all of these individuals will face significant obstacles as they struggle to reintegrate into society. A key source of these obstacles is the complex, sometimes unknown, and often harmful collection of civil consequences that flow from a criminal conviction. As the number and severity of these consequences have grown, courts, policymakers, and scholars have struggled with how to identify and understand them, how to communicate them to defendants and the public, and how to treat them in the criminal and civil processes. The …


The United States Supreme Court: An Introduction, Bert I. Huang Jan 2011

The United States Supreme Court: An Introduction, Bert I. Huang

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court of the United States has always occupied a center place in the comparative study of judicial institutional design and the role of courts. In this roundtable discussion, National Taiwan University College of Law is honored to have Professor Bert I. Huang from Columbia Law School, United States, who had served as the law clerk of Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter, to unveil the ways that the U.S. Supreme Court functions by introducing the certiorari process and the system of law clerks. Based on his own experience, Professor Huang provides his insight on the institution of law …