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Legal Philosophy

William & Mary Law School

2002

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The Living Commerce Clause: Federalism In Progressive Political Theory And The Commerce Clause After Lopez And Morrison, Eric R. Claeys Dec 2002

The Living Commerce Clause: Federalism In Progressive Political Theory And The Commerce Clause After Lopez And Morrison, Eric R. Claeys

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

"Living Constitution " ideas are most often associated with individual-rights guarantees like equal protection and due process, but they were originally developed in the early twentieth century to revolutionize the law of the structural Constitution - including the Commerce Clause. In this Article, Professor Claeys interprets Progressive political theory, which played a crucial role in legitimating the expansion of the national government. As applied to federalism, Progressive living-Constitution theory required that the Commerce Clause be interpreted as a constitutional transmitter letting the national government regulate whatever the American people deem to be a national problem. He suggests that this notion …