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Full-Text Articles in Law

The New Comity Abstention, John Harland Giammatteo Dec 2023

The New Comity Abstention, John Harland Giammatteo

Journal Articles

In the past ten years, lower federal courts have quietly but regularly abstained from hearing federal claims challenging state court procedures, citing concerns of comity and federalism. Federal courts have dismissed a broad range of substantive challenges tasked to them by Congress, including under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Indian Child Welfare Act, and various constitutional provisions, involving state court eviction proceedings, foster care determinations, bail and criminal justice policies, COVID-era safety practices, and other instances where state courts determine state policy.

This paper is the first to argue that these decisions constitute a new abstention doctrine, unmoored from …


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 …


A Tipping Point In Ohio: The Primacy Model As A Path To A Consistent Application Of Judicial Federalism, The Honorable Pierre Bergeron May 2022

A Tipping Point In Ohio: The Primacy Model As A Path To A Consistent Application Of Judicial Federalism, The Honorable Pierre Bergeron

University of Cincinnati Law Review

No abstract provided.


Answering The Call: A History Of The Emergency Power Doctrine In Texas And The United States, P. Elise Mclaren Feb 2022

Answering The Call: A History Of The Emergency Power Doctrine In Texas And The United States, P. Elise Mclaren

St. Mary's Law Journal

During times of emergency, national and local government may be allowed to take otherwise impermissible action in the interest of health, safety, or national security. The prerequisites and limits to this power, however, are altogether unknown. Like the crises they aim to deflect, courts’ modern emergency power doctrines range from outright denial of any power of constitutional circumvention to their flagrant use. Concededly, courts’ approval of emergency powers has provided national and local government opportunities to quickly respond to emergency without pause for constituency approval, but how can one be sure the availability of autocratic power will not be abused? …


State Rejection Of Federal Law, Thomas B. Bennett Jan 2022

State Rejection Of Federal Law, Thomas B. Bennett

Faculty Publications

Sometimes the United States Supreme Court speaks, and states do not follow. For example, in 2003, the Arizona Supreme Court agreed to "reject" a decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, because no "sound reasons justif[ied] following" it. Similarly, in 2006, Michigan voters approved a ballot initiative that, according to the legislature that drafted it, sought "at the very least to freeze' the state's ... law to prevent" state courts from following a ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court. Surprising though this language may be, there is nothing nefarious about these cases. Cooper v. Aaron this is not. Unlike more notorious …


The Field Of State Civil Courts, Anna E. Carpenter, Alyx Mark, Colleen F. Shanahan, Jessica K. Steinberg Jan 2022

The Field Of State Civil Courts, Anna E. Carpenter, Alyx Mark, Colleen F. Shanahan, Jessica K. Steinberg

Faculty Scholarship

This symposium Issue of the Columbia Law Review marks a moment of convergence and opportunity for an emerging field of legal scholarship focused on America’s state civil trial courts. Historically, legal scholarship has treated state civil courts as, at best, a mere footnote in conversations about civil law and procedure, federalism, and judicial behavior. But the status quo is shifting. As this Issue demonstrates, legal scholars are examining our most common civil courts as sites for understanding law, legal institutions, and how people experience civil justice. This engagement is essential for inquiries into how courts shape and respond to social …


Federalism Limits On Non-Article Iii Adjudication, F. Andrew Hessick Mar 2021

Federalism Limits On Non-Article Iii Adjudication, F. Andrew Hessick

Pepperdine Law Review

Although Article III of the Constitution vests the federal judicial power in the Article III courts, the Supreme Court has created a patchwork of exceptions permitting non-Article III tribunals to adjudicate various disputes. In doing so, the Court has focused on the separation of powers, concluding that these non-Article III adjudications do not unduly infringe on the judicial power of the Article III courts. But separation of powers is not the only consideration relevant to the lawfulness of non-Article III adjudication. Article I adjudications also implicate federalism. Permitting Article I tribunals threatens the role of state courts by expanding federal …


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 …


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.


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 …


Personal Jurisdiction And National Sovereignty, Ray Worthy Campbell Mar 2020

Personal Jurisdiction And National Sovereignty, Ray Worthy Campbell

Washington and Lee Law Review

State sovereignty, once seemingly sidelined in personal jurisdiction analysis, has returned with a vengeance. Driven by the idea that states must not offend rival states in their jurisdictional reach, some justices have looked for specific targeting of individual states as individual states by the defendant in order to justify an assertion of personal jurisdiction. To allow cases to proceed based on national targeting alone, they argue, would diminish the sovereignty of any state that the defendant had specifically targeted.

This Article looks for the first time at how this emphasis on state sovereignty limits national sovereignty, especially where alien defendants …


Beholding Law: Amadeo On The Argentine Constitution, Christina D. Ponsa-Kraus, Erin F. Delaney Jan 2020

Beholding Law: Amadeo On The Argentine Constitution, Christina D. Ponsa-Kraus, Erin F. Delaney

Faculty Scholarship

This essay introduces an online edition of Santos P. Amadeo’s Argentine Constitutional Law to be published by the Academia Puertorriqueña de Jurisprudencia y Legislación. Tracing the book to its origins in a paper Amadeo wrote for a seminar in comparative constitutional law at Columbia Law School in the 1930s, we discuss the intellectual context that gave rise to the book and assess its author’s methodological choices. We then examine one particular substantive choice: Whereas the paper specifically draws attention to the importance of understanding every form of political subdivision in a federalist system – identifying Argentina’s as the provinces, the …


The Majoritarian Rehnquist Court?, Neal Devins Sep 2019

The Majoritarian Rehnquist Court?, Neal Devins

Neal E. Devins

No abstract provided.


Constitutional Avoidance And The Roberts Court, Neal Devins Sep 2019

Constitutional Avoidance And The Roberts Court, Neal Devins

Neal E. Devins

No abstract provided.


Standing For Nothing, Robert Mikos May 2019

Standing For Nothing, Robert Mikos

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

A growing number of courts and commentators have suggested that states have Article III standing to protect state law. Proponents of such "protective" standing argue that states must be given access to federal court whenever their laws are threatened. Absent such access, they claim, many state laws might prove toothless, thereby undermining the value of the states in our federal system. Furthermore, proponents insist that this form of special solicitude is very limited-that it opens the doors to the federal courthouses a crack but does not swing them wide open. This Essay, however, contests both of these claims, and thus, …


Hearing The States, Anthony Johnstone May 2018

Hearing The States, Anthony Johnstone

Pepperdine Law Review

The 2016 Presidential and Senate elections raise the possibility that a conservative, life-tenured Supreme Court will preside for years over a politically dynamic majority. This threatens to weaken the public’s already fragile confidence in the Court. By lowering the political stakes of both national elections and its own decisions, federalism may enable the Court to defuse some of the most explosive controversies it hears. Federalism offers a second-best solution, even if neither conservatives nor liberals can impose a national political agenda. However, principled federalism arguments are tricky. They are structural, more prudential than legal or empirical. Regardless of ideology, a …


Eight Justices Are Enough: A Proposal To Improve The United States Supreme Court, Eric J. Segall May 2018

Eight Justices Are Enough: A Proposal To Improve The United States Supreme Court, Eric J. Segall

Pepperdine Law Review

Over the last twenty-five years, some of the most significant Supreme Court decisions involving issues of national significance like abortion, affirmative action, and voting rights were five-to-four decisions. In February 2016, the death of Justice Antonin Scalia turned the nine-Justice court into an eight-Justice court, comprised of four liberal and four conservative Justices, for the first time in our nation’s history. This article proposes that an evenly divided court consisting of eight Justices is the ideal Supreme Court composition. Although the other two branches of government have evolved over the years, the Supreme Court has undergone virtually no significant changes. …


The Federal–State Standing Gap: How To Enforce Federal Law In Federal Court Without Article Iii Standing, Peter N. Salib, David K. Suska May 2018

The Federal–State Standing Gap: How To Enforce Federal Law In Federal Court Without Article Iii Standing, Peter N. Salib, David K. Suska

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

You, too, can sue Donald Trump under the Emoluments Clause!

Since Inauguration Day, several lawsuits have been filed against President Trump because of his refusal to divest certain assets. They assert that Trump’s business interests conflict with the Emoluments Clause of Article I. That arcane provision forbids certain federal officials from accepting any perquisite or gain from a foreign monarch or state. The suits contend, for example, that a foreign dignitary’s booking of a room at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C. would constitute an unlawful emolument.

Most commentators quickly threw cold water on the prospect of any plaintiff …


Procedural Retrenchment And The States, Zachary D. Clopton Apr 2018

Procedural Retrenchment And The States, Zachary D. Clopton

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

Although not always headline grabbing, the Roberts Court has been highly interested in civil procedure. According to critics, the Court has undercut access to justice and private enforcement through its decisions on pleading, class actions, summary judgment, arbitration, standing, personal jurisdiction, and international law.

While I have much sympathy for the Court's critics, the current discourse too often ignores the states. Rather than bemoaning the Roberts Court's decisions to limit court access-and despairing further developments in the age of Trump-we instead might productively focus on the options open to state courts and public enforcement. Many of the aforementioned decisions are …


The Federal Equity Power, Michael T. Morley Jan 2018

The Federal Equity Power, Michael T. Morley

Scholarly Publications

Throughout the first century and a half of our nation’s history, federal courts treated equity as a type of general law. They applied a uniform, freestanding body of principles derived from the English Court of Chancery to all equitable issues that came before them, regardless of whether a case arose under federal or state law. In 1945, in Guaranty Trust Co. v. York, the United States Supreme Court held that, notwithstanding the changes wrought by the Erie Doctrine, federal courts may continue to rely on these traditional principles of equity to determine the availability of equitable relief, such as injunctions, …


Courts In Federal Countries: Federalists Or Unitarists?, Hannah Steeves Jan 2018

Courts In Federal Countries: Federalists Or Unitarists?, Hannah Steeves

Articles, Book Chapters, & Popular Press

This book is the product of a comparative research project completed by the Forum of Federations and supported by the Government of Quebec. The Forum of Federations has the goal of linking academic research to real world practices and is supported and funded by international partners. Courts in Federal Countries: Federalists or Unitarists? contributes directly to this goal by providing a well-rounded, highly informed, comparative approach to the topic of the structural issues of federalism. This text is the first of a larger, forthcoming, seven volume series on federalism to be developed by the Forum of Federations.


Federalism, Convergence, And Divergence In Constitutional Property, Gerald S. Dickinson Jan 2018

Federalism, Convergence, And Divergence In Constitutional Property, Gerald S. Dickinson

Articles

Federal law exerts a gravitational force on state actors, resulting in widespread conformity to federal law and doctrine at the state level. This has been well recognized in the literature, but scholars have paid little attention to this phenomenon in the context of constitutional property. Traditionally, state takings jurisprudence—in both eminent domain and regulatory takings—has strongly gravitated towards the Supreme Court’s takings doctrine. This long history of federal-state convergence, however, was disrupted by the Court’s controversial public use decision in Kelo v. City of New London. In the wake of Kelo, states resisted the Court’s validation of the …


Criminal Certification: Restoring Comity In The Categorical Approach, Joshua Rothenberg Nov 2017

Criminal Certification: Restoring Comity In The Categorical Approach, Joshua Rothenberg

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Federal sentencing enhancements force federal courts to delve into the world of substantive state criminal law. Does a state assault statute require violent force or just offensive touching? Does a state burglary statute that criminalizes breaking into a car or a house require prosecutors to charge the location entered as an element? Whether a person with prior convictions convicted of violating 18 U.S.C. § 922(g) faces a minimum sentence of fifteen years and a maximum of life imprisonment rather than a maximum sentence of ten years turns upon the answers to these questions. Yet, state law often does not resolve …


Judicial Federalism In The European Union, Michael Wells Jan 2017

Judicial Federalism In The European Union, Michael Wells

Scholarly Works

This article compares European Union judicial federalism with the American version. Its thesis is that the European Union’s long-term goal of political integration probably cannot be achieved without strengthening its rudimentary judicial institutions. On the one hand, the EU is a federal system in which judicial power is divided between EU courts, of which there are only three, and the well-entrenched and longstanding member state court systems. On the other hand, both the preamble and Article 1 of the Treaty of Europe state that an aim of the European Union is “creating an ever closer union among the peoples of …


Choice Of Law And Jurisdictional Policy In The Federal Courts, Tobias Barrington Wolff Jan 2017

Choice Of Law And Jurisdictional Policy In The Federal Courts, Tobias Barrington Wolff

All Faculty Scholarship

For seventy-five years, Klaxon v. Stentor Electric Manufacturing has provided a one-line answer to choice-of-law questions in federal diversity cases: Erie requires the federal court to employ the same law that a court of the state would select. The simplicity of the proposition likely accounts for the unqualified breadth with which federal courts now apply it. Choice of law doctrine is difficult, consensus in hard cases is elusive, and the anxiety that Erie produces over the demands of federalism tends to stifle any reexamination of core assumptions. The attraction of a simple answer is obvious. But Klaxon cannot bear the …


The Supreme Court Of Canada And Federalism: Does / Should Anyone Care Anymore?, A. Wayne Mackay Jan 2017

The Supreme Court Of Canada And Federalism: Does / Should Anyone Care Anymore?, A. Wayne Mackay

Articles, Book Chapters, & Popular Press

Federalism is still a relevant and vital aspect of Canadian Constitutional Law. Although a lower profile aspect than the Charter of Rights and Aboriginal rights (and in common parlance less "sexy"), the division of powers continues to an important part of the work of the Supreme Court of Canada and part of what defines us as a nation. The author argues that the Supreme Court has pursued an increasingly contextualized approach to division of powers issues - one that abandons the arid legalism of earlier days, in favour of a broad social analysis of issues based on extensive use of …


Book Review: Foreign Affairs And The Constitution. By Louis Henkin. Mineola, N.Y.: The Foundation Press, 1972. Pp. 553. $11.50., Carl Marcy Jun 2016

Book Review: Foreign Affairs And The Constitution. By Louis Henkin. Mineola, N.Y.: The Foundation Press, 1972. Pp. 553. $11.50., Carl Marcy

Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law

No abstract provided.


The Teaching Of International Law, Edward Mcwhinney Apr 2016

The Teaching Of International Law, Edward Mcwhinney

Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law

No abstract provided.