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The Intersection of Race, Class and the Constitution: Kalief Browder

Sheena C. Howard | Posted 06.22.2015 | Politics
Sheena C. Howard

The Kalief Browder case reminds me that no one like me was at the table when the Constitution was created. What good are Constitutional rights, if they are not afforded to everyone?

Texas License Plates, the Confederate Flag and the Supreme Court

Geoffrey R. Stone | Posted 06.20.2015 | Politics
Geoffrey R. Stone

Why are people willing to pay for the right to put their message on a license plate, rather than just put it on a bumper sticker? Justice Breyer suggests that it is because they want the state's endorsement of their message. The problem, though, is that this is about the state discriminating among private speakers based on whether it approves or disapproves of the message. This, the First Amendment does not permit.

Justice Scalia Versus 'Liberty'

Evan Bernick | Posted 06.17.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

Scalia has identified himself as a "faint-hearted originalist." Nowhere is his faint-heartedness more evident than in his refusal to seriously consider whether and to what extent the Constitution protects unenumerated rights.

How About a Constitutional Amendment to Clarify What War Is and What Our Collective Responsibilities Are?

Kevin Martin | Posted 06.16.2015 | Politics
Kevin Martin

I still remember stepping off the plane into a crowded airport after a tour in Iraq. It felt strange walking around after just leaving a war zone. Everyone seemed oblivious to that world and the fact that I just left it.

Texas, Our Texas: Will Republicans Continue to Make Things Even Worse?

Gerry Myers | Posted 06.12.2015 | Politics
Gerry Myers

There are many competitions in our society, in our country, and in our world. Children, adults, colleges, corporations, etc. are constantly striving to be ranked at the top.

Senate Resolution Celebrating Second Founding Is Just the Beginning

Doug Kendall | Posted 06.11.2015 | Politics
Doug Kendall

Even 150 years later, it's clear that the wounds of the Civil War are not completely healed. But despite these historical and political rifts, there is one thing that can and should unite all Americans, as it has united Senators Leahy and Lee and a unanimous Senate: The wisdom and importance of the constitutional changes wrought by the Civil War and Reconstruction.

800 Years on, the Magna Carta for Our Time

Robin Koerner | Posted 06.15.2015 | Politics
Robin Koerner

The Magna Carta is widely regarded as the document that marked the beginning of the Anglo tradition of constitutional liberty that would eventually lead to the writing of the U.S. Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.

Are Gun Rights Second-Class Rights?

Evan Bernick | Posted 06.10.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

Does a law that burdens Americans' right to self-defense at times when they are most vulnerable violate the Second Amendment? On Monday, the Supreme Court took a pass on that vital question.

GOP Calls for 'All Hell Breaking Loose' Over Gay Marriage, Because 'God'

Richard Zombeck | Posted 06.08.2015 | Politics
Richard Zombeck

As the Supreme Court's ruling on same-sex marriage bans looms, the right wing has begun their assault on reason and intellect with the standard dire warnings, threats, and fear mongering in the form of corporate boycotts and revolt. As usual, their claims include flagrant misinterpretations of their favorite documents, the Constitution and the Bible.

Judicial Equality and Its Critics: Dispelling the Myth of Majoritarianism

Evan Bernick | Posted 06.08.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

Do we have three co-equal branches of government, or does the judiciary occupy second-class status?

National Security and Privacy Secretly Wed in Las Vegas

Spencer Green | Posted 06.02.2015 | Comedy
Spencer Green

Following months of rumors, it's been revealed that Privacy and National Security were secretly married weeks ago in Las Vegas, Nevada. "We're tired of all the naysayers constantly describing us as incompatible. We'll show you. We'll show you all! Ha!" the couple wrote.

5 Supreme Court Decisions To Watch For This Month

Evan Bernick | Posted 06.02.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

The Supreme Court is entering the final stretch of its 2014-15 term, and there are enough momentous decisions on the way to give everyone something to look forward to. This June, the Court will hand down decisions in a number of high-profile cases.

Judicial Co-Equality Is Not Judicial Supremacy: Why the Judiciary Has the Final Say in Constitutional Disputes

Evan Bernick | Posted 06.01.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

To say that the judiciary is duty-bound to say "what the law is" and should not simply rubber-stamp the actions of the other branches is not to say that the other branches have a duty to obey its decisions. But holding the contrary position would make the judiciary an inferior branch and risk creating an uncertain and dangerous state of affairs.

Liberty Is a Two-Way Street: Reconciling Same-Sex Marriage and Religious Liberty

Evan Bernick | Posted 05.29.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

The language of the Court's substantive due process opinions is often imprecise. And there is room for reasoned disagreement about particular decisions. But the essential premise upon which they depend is sound, and defenders of limited government should embrace it.

President's Task Force a Springboard for Policing Reforms

Lauren-Brooke Eisen | Posted 05.28.2015 | Politics
Lauren-Brooke Eisen

While the Task Force's final report, released this week, does include some smart recommendations that could improve the criminal justice system, they missed two key opportunities to reform police practices.

Our Rights Are 'Many and Infinite': Rand Paul's Revolutionary Idea

Evan Bernick | Posted 05.27.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

During his 10-and-a-half hour filibuster in opposition to the Patriot Act, Senator Paul boldly asserted that the Constitution protects individual rights not expressly listed in its text, including the "right to privacy." As Senator Paul put it, "Few and limited [are] the powers given to the government. But it's the opposite with your rights. Your rights are many and infinite."

The Republicans are for Smaller Government Except...

Gerry Myers | Posted 05.27.2015 | Politics
Gerry Myers

While most Republicans think there is no role for government in job creation, some of our best Presidents have proven otherwise. FDR knew the importance of government when he created the New Deal that brought America out of a deep depression.

Is the Fourth Amendment Irrelevant to Law Enforcement? Three Ways Courts Can Make It Matter

Evan Bernick | Posted 05.18.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

What can be done to ensure that police officers are held accountable for Fourth Amendment violations? The only way to ensure police officers are appropriately sanctioned for violating people's rights and victims are made whole is consistent judicial engagement.

Federal Appeals Court to Police Officer: No, You Can't Slap Cuffs on Peaceful Gun Owners

Evan Bernick | Posted 05.14.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

Every part of Shawn Northrup's midsummer evening walk with his wife, daughter, grandson, and dog was legal -- including the holstered handgun he openly carried on his hip. But that was not enough to keep Northrup from being disarmed, handcuffed, and threatened with arrest by a police officer.

Unprecedented, Unwarranted, Unlawful: Federal Appeals Court Holds NSA Data Collection Illegal

Evan Bernick | Posted 05.08.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

What does it mean for "tangible things" to be "relevant" to an "authorized investigation"? The government argued that this language authorized the NSA to collect metadata if at any future time the records might become "relevant" to an "authorized" criminal investigation.

False Cries of "Activism": In Same-Sex Marriage Case, There's No Harm in Meaningful Judicial Review

Evan Bernick | Posted 05.08.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

Anderson's preoccupation with activism leads him to miss out on a crucial point that all defenders of limited government should be able to agree upon: The Court should make an independent determination of the constitutionality of the challenged marriage laws, rather than reflexively deferring to the political branches.

A Multinational Trojan Horse: The Trans-Pacific Partnership

Dave Pruett | Posted 05.07.2015 | Politics
Dave Pruett

You don't have to know much about the "trade" deal called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to be more than a little suspicious.

On Same-Sex Marriage, Supreme Court Needs to Go Back to High School

Alan Singer | Posted 05.01.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

In recent hearings on efforts by state governments to ban same-sex marriages, Supreme Court justices peppered representatives of both sides with quest...

In Same-Sex Marriage Case, Supreme Court Must Seek Truth, Not Defer to Government

Evan Bernick | Posted 06.30.2015 | Politics
Evan Bernick

If no reliable evidence at all were required to justify legislative classifications in constitutional cases, the judiciary would be transformed from a co-ordinate branch into a meaningless rubber stamp. The Framers neither intended nor envisioned that role for an institution they designated to serve as the "[bulwark] of a limited Constitution."

How Will Republicans React to Gay Marriage Decision?

Chris Weigant | Posted 06.27.2015 | Politics
Chris Weigant

The Supreme Court decision, when it happens later this year, is quite likely going to set off an argument within the Republican Party -- or, at the very least, that subset of the party who are running for president.