Author: Erwin Chemerinsky

Publisher: Penguin Books

ISBN: 0143128000

Category: History

Page: 400

View: 681

Both historically and in the present, the Supreme Court has largely been a failure In this devastating book, Erwin Chemerinsky—“one of the shining lights of legal academia” (The New York Times)—shows how, case by case, for over two centuries, the hallowed Court has been far more likely to uphold government abuses of power than to stop them. Drawing on a wealth of rulings, some famous, others little known, he reviews the Supreme Court's historic failures in key areas, including the refusal to protect minorities, the upholding of gender discrimination, and the neglect of the Constitution in times of crisis, from World War I through 9/11. No one is better suited to make this case than Chemerinsky. He has studied, taught, and practiced constitutional law for thirty years and has argued before the Supreme Court. With passion and eloquence, Chemerinsky advocates reforms that could make the system work better, and he challenges us to think more critically about the nature of the Court and the fallible men and women who sit on it.
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Author: Erwin Chemerinsky

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0698176316

Category: Political Science

Page: 400

View: 3618

A preeminent constitutional scholar offers a hard-hitting analysis of the Supreme Court over the last two hundred years Most Americans share the perception that the Supreme Court is objective, but Erwin Chemerinsky, one of the country’s leading constitutional lawyers, shows that this is nonsense and always has been. The Court is made up of fallible individuals who base decisions on their own biases. Today, the Roberts Court is promoting a conservative agenda under the guise of following a neutral methodology, but notorious decisions, such as Bush vs. Gore and Citizens United, are hardly recent exceptions. This devastating book details, case by case, how the Court has largely failed throughout American history at its most important tasks and at the most important times. Only someone of Chemerinsky’s stature and breadth of knowledge could take on this controversial topic. Powerfully arguing for term limits for justices and a reassessment of the institution as a whole, The Case Against the Supreme Court is a timely and important book that will be widely read and cited for decades to come. From the Hardcover edition.
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Author: Erwin Chemerinsky

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 9781451606355

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 7020

Over the last few decades, the Supreme Court and the federal appellate courts have undergone a dramatic shift to the right, the result of a determined effort by right-wing lawmakers and presidents to reinterpret the Constitution by reshaping the judiciary. Conservative activist justices have narrowed the scope of the Constitution, denying its protections to millions of Americans, exactly as the lawmakers who appointed and confirmed these jurists intended. Basic long-standing principles of constitutional law have been overturned by the Rehnquist and Roberts courts. As distinguished law professor and constitutional expert Erwin Chemerinsky demonstrates in this invaluable book, these changes affect the lives of every American. As a result of political pressure from conservatives and a series of Supreme Court decisions, our public schools are increasingly separate and unequal, to the great disadvantage of poor and minority students. Right-wing politicians and justices are dismantling the wall separating church and state, allowing ever greater government support for religion. With the blessing of the Supreme Court, absurdly harsh sentences are being handed down to criminal defendants, such as life sentences for shoplifting and other petty offenses. Even in death penalty cases, defendants are being denied the right to competent counsel at trial, and as a result innocent people have been convicted and sentenced to death. Right-wing politicians complain that government is too big and intrusive while at the same time they are only too happy to insert the government into the most intimate aspects of the private lives of citizens when doing so conforms to conservative morality. Conservative activist judges say that the Constitution gives people an inherent right to own firearms but not to make their own medical decisions. In some states it is easier to buy an assault rifle than to obtain an abortion. Nowhere has the conservative assault on the Constitution been more visible or more successful than in redefining the role of the president. From Richard Nixon to George W. Bush, conservatives have sought to significantly increase presidential power. The result in recent years has been unprecedented abuses, including indefinite detentions, illegal surveillance, and torture of innocent people. Finally, access to the courts is being restricted by new rulings that deny legal protections to ordinary Americans. Fewer lawsuits alleging discrimination in employment are heard; fewer people are able to sue corporations or governments for injuries they have suffered; and even when these cases do go to trial, new restrictions limit damages that plaintiffs can collect. The first step in reclaiming the protections of the Constitution, says Chemerinsky, is to recognize that right-wing justices are imposing their personal prejudices, not making neutral decisions about the scope of the Constitution, as they claim, or following the "original meaning" of the Constitution. Only then do we stand a chance of reclaiming our constitutional liberties from a rigid ideological campaign that has transformed our courts and our laws. Only then can we return to a constitutional law that advances freedom and equality.
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Why the Supreme Court is Not a Court and Its Justices are Not Judges

Author: Eric J. Segall

Publisher: ABC-CLIO

ISBN: 0313396876

Category: Law

Page: 219

View: 9071

This book explores some of the most glaring misunderstandings about the U.S. Supreme Court—and makes a strong case for why our Supreme Court Justices should not be entrusted with decisions that affect every American citizen.
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Author: Kermit L. Hall,James W. Ely,Joel B. Grossman

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 0195176618

Category: Law

Page: 1239

View: 7596

The second edition of this authoritative guide on the impact of the Supreme Court's decisions on American society includes updated entries on key cases over the past thirteen years, as well as a fully revised treatment of areas of constitutional law.
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Author: Bernard Schwartz

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780195093872

Category: History

Page: 465

View: 1210

A comprehensive history of the United States Supreme Court from its ill-esteemed beginning in 1790 to one of the most important and controversial branches of the Federal government.
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The Most Influential Decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States

Author: Gary R. Hartman,Roy M. Mersky,Cindy L. Tate

Publisher: Infobase Publishing

ISBN: 1438110367

Category: Law

Page: 609

View: 8616

Through its interpretations of the Constitution and Bill of Rights
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How Your Constitutional Rights Became Unenforceable

Author: Erwin Chemerinsky

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300224907

Category: Law

Page: 256

View: 3466

A leading legal scholar explores how the constitutional right to seek justice has been restricted by the Supreme Court The Supreme Court s decisions on constitutional rights are well known and much talked about. But individuals who want to defend those rights need something else as well: access to courts that can rule on their complaints. And on matters of access, the Court s record over the past generation has been almost uniformly hostile to the enforcement of individual citizens constitutional rights. The Court has restricted who has standing to sue, expanded the immunity of governments and government workers, limited the kinds of cases the federal courts can hear, and restricted the right of habeas corpus. Closing the Courthouse Door, by the distinguished legal scholar Erwin Chemerinsky, is the first book to show the effect of these decisions: taken together, they add up to a growing limitation on citizens ability to defend their rights under the Constitution. Using many stories of people whose rights have been trampled yet who had no legal recourse, Chemerinsky argues that enforcing the Constitution should be the federal courts primary purpose, and they should not be barred from considering any constitutional question.
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The Men and Women Whose Cases and Decisions Have Shaped OurConstitution: Revised Edition

Author: Peter Irons

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 9781101503133

Category: Political Science

Page: 576

View: 4119

A comprehensive history of the people and cases that have changed history, this is the definitive account of the nation's highest court Recent changes in the Supreme Court have placed the venerable institution at the forefront of current affairs, making this comprehensive and engaging work as timely as ever. In the tradition of Howard Zinn's classic A People's History of the United States, Peter Irons chronicles the decisions that have influenced virtually every aspect of our society, from the debates over judicial power to controversial rulings in the past regarding slavery, racial segregation, and abortion, as well as more current cases about school prayer, the Bush/Gore election results, and "enemy combatants." To understand key issues facing the supreme court and the current battle for the court's ideological makeup, there is no better guide than Peter Irons. This revised and updated edition includes a foreword by Howard Zinn. "A sophisticated narrative history of the Supreme Court . . . [Irons] breathes abundant life into old documents and reminds readers that today's fiercest arguments about rights are the continuation of the endless American conversation." -Publisher's Weekly (starred review)
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The Supreme Court's History of Comforting the Comfortable and Afflicting the Afflicted

Author: Ian Millhiser

Publisher: Nation Books

ISBN: 1568585853

Category: Political Science

Page: 368

View: 3331

Now with a new epilogue. Few American institutions have inflicted greater suffering on ordinary people than the Supreme Court of the United States. Since its inception, the justices of the Supreme Court have shaped a nation where children toiled in coal mines, where Americans could be forced into camps because of their race, and where a woman could be sterilized against her will by state law. The Court was the midwife of Jim Crow, the right hand of union busters, and the dead hand of the Confederacy. Nor is the modern Court a vast improvement, with its incursions on voting rights and its willingness to place elections for sale. In this powerful indictment of a venerated institution, Ian Millhiser tells the history of the Supreme Court through the eyes of the everyday people who have suffered the most from it. America ratified three constitutional amendments to provide equal rights to freed slaves, but the justices spent thirty years largely dismantling these amendments. Then they spent the next forty years rewriting them into a shield for the wealthy and the powerful. In the Warren era and the few years following it, progressive justices restored the Constitution’s promises of equality, free speech, and fair justice for the accused. But, Millhiser contends, that was an historic accident. Indeed, if it weren’t for several unpredictable events, Brown v. Board of Education could have gone the other way. In Injustices, Millhiser argues that the Supreme Court has seized power for itself that rightfully belongs to the people’s elected representatives, and has bent the arc of American history away from justice.
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The Case Against the Anti-Trump Conspiracy

Author: Jeanine Pirro

Publisher: Center Street

ISBN: 1546083413

Category: Political Science

Page: 288

View: 4194

Get the story the Fake News media doesn't want you to hear in the #1 New York Times bestseller: a withering indictment of the Deep State plot against Trump and a firsthand account of the real presidency, based on interviews with the Trump family and top administration officials. At this point in American history, we are the victims of a liberal sabotage of the presidency unlike anything we've ever witnessed. Nevertheless President Trump continues to fight every day to keep his promise to Make America Great Again. Today that bold idea has already led to a conservative judge on the Supreme Court, tax reform, and deregulation that has unleashed an economy stronger than anyone could have imagined. But there are dark forces that seek to obstruct and undermine the president and reverse the results of the 2016 presidential election. They are part of a wide-ranging conspiracy that would seem incredible if it weren't being perpetrated openly. Driven by ambition, blinded by greed, and bound by a common goal-to unseat the 45th President of the United States-this cabal is determined to maintain its wrongful hold on national political power. Fox News host Jeanine Pirro uncovers the elements of this conspiracy, including: "Fake news" propaganda, Law enforcement corruption at the highest levels, National security leaks by the intelligence community, Bureaucratic resistance to lawful and constitutional executive orders issued by the duly elected president, Crooked deals with foreign governments by U.S. officials sworn to defend our Constitution. It's about time the American public knows the truth about the plot to bring down the Trump presidency. By the time you've finished this book, you'll agree with Judge Pirro that the only way to stop these hoodlums is to Take Them Out in Cuffs!
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Inside the Supreme Court's Assault on the Constitution

Author: David A. Kaplan

Publisher: Crown

ISBN: 1524759929

Category: Political Science

Page: 464

View: 1387

In the bestselling tradition of The Nine and The Brethren, The Most Dangerous Branch takes us inside the secret world of the Supreme Court. David A. Kaplan, the former legal affairs editor of Newsweek, shows how the justices subvert the role of the other branches of government—and how we’ve come to accept it at our peril. With the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy, the Court has never before been more central in American life. It is the nine justices who too often now decide the controversial issues of our time—from abortion and same-sex marriage, to gun control, campaign finance and voting rights. The Court is so crucial that many voters in 2016 made their choice based on whom they thought their presidential candidate would name to the Court. Donald Trump picked Neil Gorsuch—the key decision of his new administration. The next justice—replacing Anthony Kennedy—will be even more important, holding the swing vote over so much social policy. Is that really how democracy is supposed to work? Based on exclusive interviews with the justices and dozens of their law clerks, Kaplan provides fresh details about life behind the scenes at the Court – Clarence Thomas’s simmering rage, Antonin Scalia’s death, Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s celebrity, Breyer Bingo, the petty feuding between Gorsuch and the chief justice, and what John Roberts thinks of his critics. Kaplan presents a sweeping narrative of the justices’ aggrandizement of power over the decades – from Roe v. Wade to Bush v. Gore to Citizens United, to rulings during the 2017-18 term. But the arrogance of the Court isn’t partisan: Conservative and liberal justices alike are guilty of overreach. Challenging conventional wisdom about the Court’s transcendent power, The Most Dangerous Branch is sure to rile both sides of the political aisle.
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Author: David Mayer Silver

Publisher: University of Illinois Press

ISBN: 9780252067198

Category: History

Page: 272

View: 992

More than four decades after its initial publication this book is still the only one to focus exclusively on President Abraham Lincoln's role in modifying the Supreme Court membership to secure the power he needed to save the Union.
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Author: Damon Root

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

ISBN: 1137474688

Category: Political Science

Page: 288

View: 5750

Should the Supreme Court defer to the will of the majority and uphold most democratically enacted laws? Or does the Constitution empower the Supreme Court to protect a broad range of individual rights from the reach of lawmakers? In this timely and provocative book, Damon Root traces the long war over judicial activism and judicial restraint from its beginnings in the bloody age of slavery, the Civil War, and Reconstruction to its central role in today's blockbuster legal battles over gay rights, gun control, and health care reform. It's a conflict that cuts across the political spectrum in surprising ways and makes for some unusual bedfellows. Judicial deference is not only a touchstone of the Progressive left, for example, it is also a philosophy adopted by many members of the modern right. Today's growing camp of libertarians, however, has no patience with judicial restraint and little use for majority rule. They want the courts and judges to police the other branches of government, and expect Justices to strike down any state or federal law that infringes on their bold constitutional agenda of personal and economic freedom. Overruled is the story of two competing visions, each one with its own take on what role the government and the courts should play in our society, a fundamental debate that goes to the very heart of our constitutional system.
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Lethal Crimes and Landmark Cases

Author: Martin Clancy,Tim O'Brien

Publisher: Prometheus Books

ISBN: 1616146494

Category: True Crime

Page: 375

View: 9404

This in-depth yet highly accessible books provides compelling human stories that illuminate the thorny legal issues behind the most noteworthy capital cases. In 1969, the Supreme Court justices cast votes in secret that could have signaled the end of the death penalty. Later, the justices’ resolve began to unravel. Why? What were the consequences for the rule of law and for the life at stake in the case? These are some of the fascinating questions answered in Murder at the Supreme Court. Veteran journalists Martin Clancy and Tim O’Brien not only pull back the curtain of secrecy that surrounds Supreme Court deliberations but also reveal the crucial links between landmark capital-punishment cases and the lethal crimes at their root. The authors take readers to crime scenes, holding cells, jury rooms, autopsy suites, and execution chambers to provide true-life reporting on vicious criminals and the haphazard judicial system that punishes them. The cases reported are truly "the cases that made the law." They have defined the parameters that judges must follow for a death sentence to stand up on appeal. Beyond the obvious questions regarding the dubious deterrent effect of capital punishment or whether retribution is sufficient justification for the death penalty (regardless of the heinous nature of the crimes committed), the cases and crimes examined in this book raise other confounding issues: Is lethal injection really more humane than other methods of execution? Should a mentally ill killer be forcibly medicated to make him "well enough" to be executed? How does the race of the perpetrator or the victim influence sentencing? Is heinous rape a capital crime? How young is too young to be executed?
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The Court's New Right-wing Bloc

Author: Ronald Dworkin

Publisher: New York Review of Books

ISBN: 1590172930

Category: Law

Page: 71

View: 8887

Discusses the conservative shift in the Supreme court after the appointment of John Roberts and Samuel Alito in 2005 and the effect this shift may have on constitutional law, including abortion, affirmative action, and executive power.
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Author: Stephen Breyer

Publisher: Brookings Institution Press

ISBN: 0815728905

Category: Political Science

Page: 176

View: 4135

A landmark dissenting opinion arguing against the death penalty Does the death penalty violate the Constitution? In Against the Death Penalty, Justice Stephen G. Breyer argues that it does: that it is carried out unfairly and inconsistently, and thus violates the ban on "cruel and unusual punishments" specified by the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution. "Today’s administration of the death penalty," Breyer writes, "involves three fundamental constitutional defects: (1) serious unreliability, (2) arbitrariness in application, and (3) unconscionably long delays that undermine the death penalty’s penological purpose. Perhaps as a result, (4) most places within the United States have abandoned its use." This volume contains Breyer's dissent in the case of Glossip v. Gross, which involved an unsuccessful challenge to Oklahoma's use of a lethal-injection drug because it might cause severe pain. Justice Breyer's legal citations have been edited to make them understandable to a general audience, but the text retains the full force of his powerful argument that the time has come for the Supreme Court to revisit the constitutionality of the death penalty. Breyer was joined in his dissent from the bench by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Their passionate argument has been cited by many legal experts — including fellow Justice Antonin Scalia — as signaling an eventual Court ruling striking down the death penalty. A similar dissent in 1963 by Breyer's mentor, Justice Arthur J. Goldberg, helped set the stage for a later ruling, imposing what turned out to be a four-year moratorium on executions.
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The Supreme Court, National Security, and the Constitutional Order

Author: David Rudenstine

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199381488

Category: Military law

Page: 344

View: 4201

In October 1948-one year after the creation of the U.S. Air Force as a separate military branch-a B-29 Superfortress crashed on a test run, killing the plane's crew. The plane was constructed with poor materials, and the families of the dead sued the U.S. government for damages. In the case, the government claimed that releasing information relating to the crash would reveal important state secrets, and refused to hand over the requested documents. Judges at both the U.S. District Court level and Circuit level rejected the government's argument and ruled in favor of the families. However, in 1953, the Supreme Court reversed the lower courts' decisions and ruled that in the realm of national security, the executive branch had a right to withhold information from the public. Judicial deference to the executive on national security matters has increased ever since the issuance of that landmark decision. Today, the government's ability to invoke state secrets privileges goes unquestioned by a largely supine judicial branch. David Rudenstine's The Age of Deference traces the Court's role in the rise of judicial deference to executive power since the end of World War II. He shows how in case after case, going back to the Truman and Eisenhower presidencies, the Court has ceded authority in national security matters to the executive branch. Since 9/11, the executive faces even less oversight. According to Rudenstine, this has had a negative impact both on individual rights and on our ability to check executive authority when necessary. Judges are mindful of the limits of their competence in national security matters; this, combined with their insulation from political accountability, has caused them in matters as important as the nation's security to defer to the executive. Judges are also afraid of being responsible for a decision that puts the nation at risk and the consequences for the judiciary in the wake of such a decision. Nonetheless, The Age of Deference argues that as important as these considerations are in shaping a judicial disposition, the Supreme Court has leaned too far, too often, and for too long in the direction of abdication. There is a broad spectrum separating judicial abdication, at one end, from judicial usurpation, at the other, and The Age of Deference argues that the rule of law compels the court to re-define its perspective and the legal doctrines central to the Age.
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Reflections of a Supreme Court Justice

Author: Sandra Day O'Connor

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 0307432416

Category: Law

Page: 352

View: 1270

In this remarkable book, a national bestseller in hardcover, Sandra Day O’Connor explores the law, her life as a Supreme Court Justice, and how the Court has evolved and continues to function, grow, and change as an American institution. Tracing some of the origins of American law through history, people, ideas, and landmark cases, O’Connor sheds new light on the basics, exploring through personal observation the evolution of the Court and American democratic traditions. Straight-talking, clear-eyed, inspiring, The Majesty of the Law is more than a reflection on O’Connor’s own experiences as the first female Justice of the Supreme Court; it also reveals some of the things she has learned and believes about American law and life—reflections gleaned over her years as one of the most powerful and inspiring women in American history. From the Trade Paperback edition.
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