A project spearheaded by Jack Balkin but featuring the insights of more than a dozen other professors and experts, Balkinization offers a wealth of commentary on political issues on a daily basis. Lots of reader comments make the content here even more worthwhile to read.
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Just about everyone who is paying attention agrees that the appointments process for federal judges is far too politicized. Neither side trusts the other. Both sides are guilty of hypocrisy. It’s a mess that threatens the integrity of judging as well as public faith in the integrity of...
How the Financial Crisis is Reshaping Democratic Politics: Term Limits Reconsidered (written with Elizabeth Garrett)
The financial crisis is already reshaping electoral politics even in the short term. The crisis appears to have transformed the presidential race, with Sen. Obama apparently moving ahead substantially during the last two weeks, at least for now, directly as a result. Now, we are seeing another...
One of the valuable points made in Saul Cornell's book on the Second Amendment is that self-defense was treated as a "common-law" right and not a "constitutional right" at the time of the Framing. So, as a matter of sheer historical accuracy, Scalia was probably wrong in suggesting that the Second...
Can the President indefinitely detain someone who has no connection to Al Qaeda and who has not engaged in any belligerent acts against the United States?Last week, an ideologically diverse panel (Judges Sentelle, Garland and Griffith) of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of...
The result in Snyder v. Phelps was not unexpected. But the Court's decision, written by Chief Justice Roberts, has important implications for informational privacy law that many people, focusing on the antics of the Westboro Baptist Church, may have missed.In his majority opinion, Roberts...
American- or French-style presidentialism flows organically from a revolutionary context in which the leader of a national liberal movement – Washington or Bolivar, De Gaulle or Walesa – has emerged during a lengthy period of struggle against an authoritarian regime. By the time the movement has...
As I have discussed in previous posts (here and here), the Obama administration takes the position (and will argue in the Second Circuit) that classifications based on sexual orientation should be subject to heightened or intermediate scrutiny, under which the government must establish that the...
As you know, I’ve been tracking the budget debates regarding incarceration recently and I’ve just started a thread over at Goodreads to discuss this puzzling relationship between punishment and economic logics. The major question on the table is how come laissez faire has gone hand-in-hand with...
The website DrawCongress.org is now live. On this website you will see congressional redistricting plans drawn by students in my Redistricting and Gerrymandering Course at Columbia. DrawCongress.org represents the first attempt to create an internet depository for nonpartisan congressional maps...
Supreme Court ethics are in the news.The organization, "Common Cause," recently asked Attorney General Holder to investigate whether Justice Scalia and Justice Thomas should have recused themselves from Citizens United v. FEC, the 2010 decision in which the Supreme Court invalidated federal...