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Faculty Scholarship

Supreme Court of the United States

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Rewriting Whren V. United States, Jonathan P. Feingold, Devon Carbado Apr 2022

Rewriting Whren V. United States, Jonathan P. Feingold, Devon Carbado

Faculty Scholarship

In 1996, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Whren v. United States—a unanimous opinion in which the Court effectively constitutionalized racial profiling. Despite its enduring consequences, Whren remains good law today. This Article rewrites the opinion. We do so, in part, to demonstrate how one might incorporate racial justice concerns into Fourth Amendment jurisprudence, a body of law that has long elided and marginalized the racialized dimensions of policing. A separate aim is to reveal the “false necessity” of the Whren outcome. The fact that Whren was unanimous, and that even progressive Justices signed on, might lead one to ...


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 ...


Civil Procedure Update 2021 (Handout And Slide Deck), Verónica Gonzales-Zamora, Julio C. Romero Apr 2021

Civil Procedure Update 2021 (Handout And Slide Deck), Verónica Gonzales-Zamora, Julio C. Romero

Faculty Scholarship

This presentation aims to 1) review recent amendments to the state and federal rules of civil procedure; 2) help you understand the impact of recent federal and state published opinions interpreting and applying the rules of civil procedure; and 3) assess your understanding of the updates.


Modeling Narrowest Grounds, Maxwell Stearns Jan 2021

Modeling Narrowest Grounds, Maxwell Stearns

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court’s doctrinal statements governing nonmajority opinions demonstrate inconsistencies and confusion belied by the Justices’ behaviors modeling the narrowest grounds doctrine. And yet, lower courts are bound by stated doctrine, beginning with Marks v. United States, not rules of construction inferred from judicial conduct. This Article simplifies the narrowest grounds rule, reconciling doctrinal formulations with observed behaviors, avoiding the implicit command: “Watch what we do, not what we say.”

The two most recent cases considering Marks, Ramos v. Louisiana and Hughes v. United States, obfuscate three central features: (1) when the doctrine does or does not apply; (2 ...


John Marshall Harlan And Constitutional Adjudication: An Anniversary Rehearing, H. Jefferson Powell Jan 2021

John Marshall Harlan And Constitutional Adjudication: An Anniversary Rehearing, H. Jefferson Powell

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Protecting The Supreme Court: Why Safeguarding The Judiciary’S Independence Is Crucial To Maintaining Its Legitimacy, Isabella Abelite, Evelyn Michalos, John Rogue Jan 2021

Protecting The Supreme Court: Why Safeguarding The Judiciary’S Independence Is Crucial To Maintaining Its Legitimacy, Isabella Abelite, Evelyn Michalos, John Rogue

Faculty Scholarship

The stability of the Supreme Court’s size and procedures is a critical source of legitimacy, but reforms might protect the Court’s independence from politics. Perceptions among members of the public that justices are political actors harms the rule of law. This report discusses reforms to ensure that each president receives the same number of appointments to the Supreme Court. The report also considers how to guarantee each nominee a Senate hearing and reforms to the retirement stage of justices’ tenures.


The (Joseph) Stories Of Newmyer And Cover: Hero Or Tragedy?, Jed E. Shugerman Jan 2021

The (Joseph) Stories Of Newmyer And Cover: Hero Or Tragedy?, Jed E. Shugerman

Faculty Scholarship

Kent Newmyer’s classics Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story: Statesman of the Old Republic and John Marshall and the Heroic Age of the Supreme Court are important stories about the architects and heroes of the rule of law in America. In Newmyer’s account, Story played a crucial role preserving the republic and building a legal nation out of rival states, and Newmyer’s Story is fundamentally important for students of American history. But in Robert Cover’s account in Justice Accused on northern judges’ deference to slavery, Story is an anti-hero. Sometimes Story stayed silent. In Prigg v. Pennsylvania ...


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 ...


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.


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 ...


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.


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 ...


Second Amendment Animus, Jacob D. Charles Jan 2021

Second Amendment Animus, Jacob D. Charles

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court’s animus doctrine has proven surprisingly adaptive. The Court has employed the doctrine not just in the typical equal protection context from which it arose, but also to claims that religious conduct or beliefs are the target of legislative hostility. Animus law and scholarship are flourishing after several invocations of the doctrine in the high Court’s recent Terms. Coinciding with these developments, gun-rights advocates and other supporters have increasingly railed against the hostility with which they believe government officials are treating the Second Amendment. This Essay connects these developments, mapping three types of gun-supporter claims that ...


Tainted Precedent, Darrell A. H. Miller Jan 2021

Tainted Precedent, Darrell A. H. Miller

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Civil Procedure Update 2020: New Mexico Annual Judicial Conclave, Verónica C. Gonzales-Zamora, George Bach Jun 2020

Civil Procedure Update 2020: New Mexico Annual Judicial Conclave, Verónica C. Gonzales-Zamora, George Bach

Faculty Scholarship

These materials are part of a presentation on civil procedure given to magistrate, district, appellate, and tribal court judges, justices, and staff attorneys in New Mexico courts. These materials include the language of approved and proposed amendments to the state and federal rules of civil procedure as well as summaries of relevant appellate cases issued by the New Mexico Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court of the United States, and the Supreme Court of the Navajo Nation between May 1, 2019 to May 1, 2020.

  • Amendments to the New Mexico Rules of Civil Procedure include NMRA Rule ...


Mr. Gorsuch, Meet Mr. Marshall: A Private-Law Framework For The Public-Law Puzzle Of Subdelegation, Gary Lawson May 2020

Mr. Gorsuch, Meet Mr. Marshall: A Private-Law Framework For The Public-Law Puzzle Of Subdelegation, Gary Lawson

Faculty Scholarship

In the wake of Gundy v. United States, 139 S.Ct. 2116 (2019), there is reason to think that five Justices might be willing to consider reviving the constitutional non-subdelegation doctrine. But in what form? Judges and scholars have labored for more than two centuries to come up with a legally rigorous standard for evaluating the permissible scope and breadth of congressional grants of discretion to executive and judicial agents. Some, such as Justice Scalia, eventually gave up in despair. That is a grave mistake. Lawyers had faced subdelegation questions for centuries before the Constitution was ratified, in the context ...


Crisis? Whose Crisis?, Jack Beermann Mar 2020

Crisis? Whose Crisis?, Jack Beermann

Faculty Scholarship

Every moment in human history can be characterized by someone as “socially and politically charged.” For a large portion of the population of the United States, nearly the entire history of the country has been socially and politically charged, first because they were enslaved and then because they were subjected to discriminatory laws and unequal treatment under what became known as “Jim Crow.” The history of the United States has also been a period of social and political upheaval for American Indians, the people who occupied the territory that became the United States before European settlement. Although both African-Americans and ...


The Supreme Court And The 117th Congress, Andrew K. Jennings, Athul K. Acharya Jan 2020

The Supreme Court And The 117th Congress, Andrew K. Jennings, Athul K. Acharya

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Equality Is A Brokered Idea, Robert L. Tsai Jan 2020

Equality Is A Brokered Idea, Robert L. Tsai

Faculty Scholarship

This essay examines the Supreme Court's stunning decision in the census case, Department of Commerce v. New York. I characterize Chief Justice John Roberts' decision to side with the liberals as an example of pursuing the ends of equality by other means – this time, through the rule of reason. Although the appeal was limited in scope, the stakes for political and racial equality were sky high. In blocking the administration from adding a citizenship question to the 2020 Census, 5 members of the Court found the justification the administration gave to be a pretext. In this instance, that lie ...


Case-Linked Jurisdiction And Busybody States, Howard M. Erichson, John C.P. Goldberg, Benjamin Zipursky Jan 2020

Case-Linked Jurisdiction And Busybody States, Howard M. Erichson, John C.P. Goldberg, Benjamin Zipursky

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


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 violation ...


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, of ...


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.


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 ...


The Empty Chair: Reflections On An Absent Justice, Jennifer L. Behrens Jan 2020

The Empty Chair: Reflections On An Absent Justice, Jennifer L. Behrens

Faculty Scholarship

This article examines a January 1888 letter to U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Morrison Waite from Associate Justice Stanley Matthews. Justice Matthews requested time away from the notoriously overworked Court’s session in order to attend the funeral of Dr. Peter Parker, renowned medical missionary and diplomat. The piece presents biographical sketches of Justice Matthews and Dr. Parker, and considers the historical context of the potential absence on the late nineteenth-century Court’s operations.


Sandra Day O’Connor’S "First" Principles: A Constructive Vision For An Angry Nation, Lisa Kern Griffin Jan 2020

Sandra Day O’Connor’S "First" Principles: A Constructive Vision For An Angry Nation, Lisa Kern Griffin

Faculty Scholarship

During her 25-year tenure on the Supreme Court, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor cast the decisive votes to resolve the most emotional debates, yet she maintained collegiality among the Justices and retained the public’s high regard. A recent biography by historian and journalist Evan Thomas chronicles her extraordinary personal qualities, remarkable professional journey, and constructive brand of patriotism. This book review essay describes a legacy in three parts: a lived example of how to thrive in the face of challenges, a jurisprudence driven by the courage to make compromises, and a theory about the long game of American democracy ...


Empty Chairs, Jennifer L. Behrens Jan 2020

Empty Chairs, Jennifer L. Behrens

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Packing And Unpacking State Courts, Marin K. Levy Jan 2020

Packing And Unpacking State Courts, Marin K. Levy

Faculty Scholarship

When it comes to court packing, questions of “should” and “can” are inextricably intertwined. The conventional wisdom has long been that federal court packing is something the President and Congress simply cannot do. Even though the Constitution’s text does not directly prohibit expanding or contracting the size of courts for political gain, many have argued that there is a longstanding norm against doing so, stemming from a commitment to judicial independence and separation of powers. And so (the argument goes), even though the political branches might otherwise be tempted to add or subtract seats to change the Court’s ...


Overwriting And Under-Deciding: Addressing The Roberts Court's Shrinking Docket, Meg Penrose Sep 2019

Overwriting And Under-Deciding: Addressing The Roberts Court's Shrinking Docket, Meg Penrose

Faculty Scholarship

How do we evaluate a Supreme Court that writes more than it decides? Despite having the lowest decisional output in the modern era, the Roberts Court is the most verbose Supreme Court in history. The current Justices are more likely than past Justices to have their individual say in cases, writing more concurring and dissenting opinions than prior Courts. These opinions are longer, often strongly worded, and rarely add clarity to the underlying decision. The Roberts Court has shifted from being a decisional body to becoming an institution that comments on more cases than it decides.

This article critiques the ...


Elite Patent Law, Paul Gugliuzza Jul 2019

Elite Patent Law, Paul Gugliuzza

Faculty Scholarship

Over the last twenty years, one of the most significant developments in intellectual property law has been the dramatic increase in the number of patent cases decided by the U.S. Supreme Court. That same time period has also seen the emergence of a small, elite group of lawyers specializing not in any particular area of substantive law but in litigation before the Supreme Court. In recent empirical work, I linked the Court’s growing interest in patent law to the more frequent participation of elite Supreme Court lawyers in patent cases, particularly at the cert. stage. Among other things ...