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November 23, 2020

The Hill: Say ‘no thanks’ to Thanksgiving mandates

Just when you thought 2020 couldn't get any stranger, it's likely that your governor has invited himself or herself to your Thanksgiving dinner. And no, they aren't bringing sweet potatoes. Instead, they're bringing civil and criminal fines, and maybe even jail time. They are joined by mayors and other state and local officials who are ...

November 18, 2020

Governors can’t single-handedly govern during COVID-19

Ever since the COVID-19 outbreak began, individuals and businesses have taken extraordinary measures to slow its spread. But in many states, instead of working with legislatures to enact reasonable and constitutional COVID-19 protocols, governors have used executive orders and emergency powers to govern single-handedly, without any of the proper ch ...

November 16, 2020

Supreme Court dissents’ role in shaping our laws

"It has been a tradition in the United States of dissents becoming the law of the land. So you're writing for a future age, and your hope is that with time the Court will see it the way you do." — Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933-2020) on writing dissenting opinions   We all ...

November 13, 2020

Jurist: The Supreme Court and the importance of nominal damages

When attorneys file legal complaints in court, they generally request specific relief for the plaintiff, such as a declaration that government action was unconstitutional, or an injunction, or compensatory damages. Then, just in case they forgot something, they add a catch-all request asking for "any such additional relief as would be just and prop ...

November 13, 2020

The Federalist: Philadelphia foster care case challenges Justice Scalia’s most controversial opinion

On Nov. 4, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, a challenge to the city's exclusion of Catholic Social Services from participation in the foster care system due to its views on same-sex behavior. This may sound like a run-of-the-mill battle in the culture war, but there's a lot more ...

November 11, 2020

Amy Coney Barrett, in her own words

Earlier this year, I had the pleasure of interviewing Amy Coney Barrett for The Heritage Foundation’s SCOTUS 101 podcast about life, the law, and being a judge, professor, and mother all at the same time. My interview with then-Judge Barrett took place before she was nominated to the United States Supreme Court. This article originally ...

November 09, 2020

The Hill: ObamaCare and the saddest kind of dissent

Judges write dissenting opinions for all kinds of reasons — to create a roadmap for future challenges, to register their protest, or to persuade their colleagues over time. The best dissents are the ones that never see the light of day because they are so persuasive and they become the majority. And perhaps the saddest ...

November 06, 2020

Students win a victory for free speech at University of Texas at Austin

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit handed down a decision in favor of several students challenging speech codes at the University of Texas at Austin. The court held that students were deterred from speaking by UT's restrictive speech codes, and that deterrence was a serious-enough injury to their First Amendment ...

November 05, 2020

Daily Journal: This land is your land – but Malibu won’t let you tell anyone

Whether you live in a city, a suburb, or out in the country, you have probably seen a “private property” or “no trespassing” sign. Such signs are ubiquitous across America and can be extremely helpful in protecting and preserving property rights. But some property owners find that it is harder than expected to put up ...

November 03, 2020

Fox & Hounds: California’s Proposition 16 will bring discrimination, not equality — and voters see right through it

Let's say you're a California voter, looking at Proposition 16 on the ballot, and you don't like what you see in this proposed amendment to repeal the state's constitutional ban on racial preferences.   Don't feel bad about it: according to the opinion polls, you're not alone. And the problem isn't with you. It's that this ...