The integrity of prosecution is an executive concern, but it’s a judicial one too.
If the president and the vice president become incapacitated simultaneously, the country could face a constitutional crisis.
The Court will decide whether electors must vote for their party’s candidate, but no matter the answer, the system will still be a disaster.
They say they are demonstrating against tyranny, but they are in fact enjoying an extreme—and dangerous—sort of liberty.
Lyle Denniston, one of the most seasoned Court watchers of all time, is unimpressed by the new format.
By accepting Trump’s argument for keeping his finances secret, the Court could strip Congress of its ability to hold this, or any, president to account.
Prosecutorial discretion is necessary for law enforcement to work. But dropping the case against Michael Flynn is an abuse of this power, one that egregiously undermines the rule of law.
In overturning the criminal convictions that resulted from the Bridgegate scandal, the Court is embracing a view of the world that is unbearably bleak.
The state claims that affirming a reservation in eastern Oklahoma could lead to thousands of state criminal convictions being thrown out. But that argument doesn’t seem to be based on facts.
The Court will soon decide whether automated calls to cellphones, however annoying they may be, are constitutionally protected.
In a crisis defined by erratic leadership in Washington, D.C., the states, as much out of desperation as by design, find themselves asserting long-dormant powers.
Members of the House simply cannot adequately respond to the needs of hundreds of thousands of people.
America’s new reality show begins Monday.
America’s response to the pandemic harkens back to ugly times in our country’s history. But to recognize that, we need to know our elders’ stories.
Some state governments are criminalizing and censoring lawful speech under the guise of protecting public health.
The Supreme Court has the opportunity to prove to the country that despite all the hardships that surround us, humanity is not dead, and cruelty does not rule the day.
The Supreme Court may hear a case that will test the country’s commitment to protecting protest organizers.
The government’s reaction to COVID-19 in jails and ICE detention facilities must follow settled legal precedent on acceptable conditions of confinement. The pandemic does not change that obligation.
Even the Founding Father with the most expansive view of executive power would have found Trump’s recent constitutional ideas troubling.
A president cannot just make Congress disappear when he wishes.
At a technical, legal level, Donald Trump’s proposal to force Congress to adjourn doesn’t hold up.
If the country’s institutions cannot function effectively during a crisis, and especially if a view takes hold that authoritarian regimes are managing the crisis more decisively, a grim future lies ahead.
A belief seems to persist among some on Capitol Hill that the Constitution requires members’ physical presence to do the nation’s business. This is false.
Even if the president can’t mandate the states to reopen their economies, he can still do plenty to force that outcome.
The Court’s decision to make oral arguments more accessible and transparent is unprecedented—and should be the norm even after the pandemic.
The conservative majority asked citizens in Wisconsin to risk their lives in order to vote—to the benefit of the Republican Party.
The justices are forcing citizens to choose between voting and staying safe from the coronavirus. This fall’s election could be no different.
There is no magic in the DPA’s mere invocation. The question is what that invocation makes possible and whether it serves the country’s complex supply needs.
It’s an argument for authoritarian extremism.
Common-Good Constitutionalism Reveals the Dangers of Any Non-originalist Approach to the Constitution
This wolf comes as a wolf.
While the president may not be using the coronavirus to consolidate power, Americans should still be worried about the threat he poses to democracy.
Congress should act to protect directors of the various parts of the National Institutes of Health—of whom Anthony Fauci is one—from the wrath of the president.
When the machinery of justice is halted abruptly, some of the people trapped inside are not supposed to be there at all.
Enforcing a large-scale quarantine would be legally murky, even if it’s what the country needs to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
The dominant conservative philosophy for interpreting the Constitution has served its purpose, and scholars ought to develop a more moral framework.
The president can’t simply cancel the fall balloting, but his state-level allies could still deliver him a second term.
The Supreme Court will soon decide whether one state can constitutionally mandate “partisan balance” on its judicial benches.
It’s a time-tested and straightforward solution, and the time to plan for it is now.
The prospect, while still remote, is not purely hypothetical in the current crisis, and the risk is great.
Don’t let the coronavirus undermine America’s election.
People of both parties seem rather okay with undermining core civil liberties in order to fight the pandemic.
Poor people are more likely to see their homes and belongings seized by the state for dubious reasons.
There are three methods of mobilizing America’s citizen soldiers. Which one Trump chooses will matter a great deal.
I led the agency for six years. It must keep doing its important work of protecting consumers.
During the 1918 influenza crisis, public officials faced similar challenges to the ones American government is confronted with today.
State and local shutdown orders shouldn’t exempt religious gatherings, and those communities should comply.
Should the country have an upper-limit age restriction on those seeking its highest office?
The system systematically favors prosecutors. Creating a position of defender general would be a step toward righting things.
The Supreme Court will soon hear two cases that could upend the entire Electoral College system just months before voters go to the polls.
The president will likely lose his cases against The New York Times, The Washington Post, and CNN. But he may inflict extraordinary damage nevertheless.
Both gun-rights advocates and educational equity activists use similar legal strategies. Why does the Supreme Court treat them so differently?
The president’s remarkable lawsuit against his own accountants and bankers can succeed only if the conservative majority intervenes on his behalf.
Imitating Trump’s threats is not the way to preserve the rule of law in this country.
Will the Supreme Court’s conservative majority do anything to stop him?
Today’s authoritarians use legal measures to subvert constitutional constraints on their power.
This is a profound misunderstanding of the American constitutional system.
The change comes at a time when the perspective of immigration judges would be particularly valuable to the public.
Even with the help of powerful 21st-century linguistic databases, the phrase “keep and bear arms” remains debatable.
In Trump’s mind, he is not politicizing law enforcement. On the contrary, he is trying to fight politicization coming from his opponents within the department.
Over the past half century, the Supreme Court’s empathy for the poor has been replaced by hostility.
The president’s administration is attempting to bring thousands of federal employees under his control, and the public is largely unaware.
A peaceful transfer of power is necessary for American democracy to survive.
The Constitution allows the president to forgive any federal crime, but just because he can does not mean he should.
America’s defense against epidemics is divided among more than 2,000 individual public-health departments, which makes implementing a national strategy very difficult.
The impeachment and subsequent acquittal of President Trump have revealed deep flaws in the constitutional system.
June Medical Services v. Russo presents the Supreme Court with the power to green-light extremely restrictive abortion laws.
No longer will presidents live with the possibility of being removed from office. But that’s not to say Congress is powerless.
When I joined the Navy, I swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution. But not once, in all of my training, did I receive meaningful instruction on the document to which I had pledged my life.
New states are the answer to America’s minority-rule problem.
The revolution wasn’t only an effort to establish independence from the British—it was also a push to preserve slavery and suppress Native American resistance.
History suggests the value of a broader understanding of patriotism, one that goes beyond saluting-the-flag loyalty and battlefield bravery.
The government set up by James Madison and the other Founders requires a virtuous public and virtuous leaders—or the whole system will fail.
If the country’s nine justices wind up deciding the presidential race, things could get very ugly very quickly.
The process requires a critical evaluation of disputed facts or legal issues. That’s the whole point.
And that’s probably a good thing.
Republicans aren’t fighting to keep Trump in office—they’re fighting to preserve white-minority power.
The state may have to revive a now-defunct school-scholarship program to make amends for supposed anti-Catholic sentiment at its founding.
A decision to remove the president from office should not turn on public opinion.
Depriving a president of power does not require the same protective measures as when the state deprives a private citizen of life, liberty, or property.
Like so many contentions of the president’s legal team, this is malarkey thinly draped with plausible-sounding distortions of facts, rules, court opinions, and the Constitution itself.
To condone the president’s behavior is to shift power further into the executive and break the protections the Framers created.
Equality premised on the power to end life is not true equality at all.
Republicans are surely learning a lesson: An impeachable offense is what you say it is.
And a resulting acquittal verdict would present Americans with something far worse than a constitutional crisis.
A case now before the Fifth Circuit threatens to upend the laws that enable Native self-governance.
Protesters gathered at the Virginia state capitol on Monday to exercise their First Amendment rights, but they did so in a way that took away the First Amendment rights of others.
The Constitution originally provided for the selection of senators by state legislatures, but the Seventeenth Amendment changed that, and with it, the Senate itself.
The president’s job is to oversee the whole of the executive branch, but under Trump the inverse is happening.
One civil servant will determine whether the ERA gets added to America’s founding document—the question is which authority he’ll turn to for guidance.
Somebody has to determine whether the ERA is valid or not, and without quite saying so, the Department of Justice is claiming that person is none other than Attorney General Bill Barr.
A repealed amendment and generations of Supreme Court rulings have left the constitutional regulation of private behavior in the past. Will it stay there?
There is a plan that can get the country closer to having a national popular election for president within the current constitutional framework, and without the need for a constitutional amendment.
Thirty-seven states still have Blaine Amendments on the books. The Supreme Court now has a chance to get rid of them for good.
Congress has a number of tools it can—and should—wield to rein in the president.
But it still should matter more than it does.
If Congress fails to respond effectively, the constitutional order will be broken beyond repair, and the president will be left with the unmitigated power to take the country to war on his own—anywhere, anytime, for any reason.
John Adams worried that “a division of the republic into two great parties … is to be dreaded as the great political evil.” And that’s exactly what has come to pass.
What exactly is abuse of power? And, for that matter, what is “obstruction of Congress”?
The country’s armed services can be an important check against lawlessness in the civilian executive. But correcting bad presidential policy is a job the Constitution leaves to Congress.
Groups of citizens regularly exercise the right to assemble, but too often American political and cultural leaders ignore it.
The Twenty-Fifth Amendment was never meant to be used to remove a terrible—albeit alert—president from office. But that’s not what the country has learned from Hollywood.
The Founding Father’s account of the Constitutional Convention includes a famous conversation about causes for impeachment. But the relevant portion of his notes isn’t what it seems.
Dishonesty and disinformation have become regular features of America’s national discourse, but under oath, truth still matters.
There are four main reasons this gambit should be abandoned.
The chief justice’s role in the impeachment trial is a limited one, and he should be able to manage it easily without putting his or the Court’s legitimacy at risk.
A Fifth Circuit panel judge has changed his mind about DeRay Mckesson’s liability for violence at a Baton Rouge protest, but Americans’ right to protest is still under assault.
Closed-door proceedings may be just what the country needs.
The Constitution does not provide procedural guidelines for how an impeachment trial is to be conducted—so the senators of 1868 had to figure it out as they went.
An activist is on trial for being an activist, and the Supreme Court needs to protect anti-police protesters.
Republicans are still waiting for a convincing case that the president was acting to advance his own personal interests.
The process may be political, but it also must conform to certain legal norms.
Instead of settling on charges that relate to statutory crimes, with clear, concrete criteria, the Democrats have instead released two articles of impeachment in which the misconduct exists largely in the eye of the beholder.
Conservative activists keep asking the Court to hear cases that are already irrelevant—and, worryingly, the Court keeps saying yes.
Election corruption can’t be solved by corrupt elections, so the Founders devised a special solution: impeachment.
The Founders gave the executive branch immense authority—but also counted on the people to hold their leaders in check.
The American experiment requires virtuous leaders who place the public good over their own personal or partisan interests.
I was part of a team that carefully developed a rule-making process in compliance with both the Constitution and Congress’s laws. Can the same be said now?
The experience of participating in the state-sanctioned killing of another human being has shaped me forever—and is why I believe this country should not pursue federal capital punishment.
America’s political leaders like to talk a big game about proper constitutional conduct and high-minded principles, but the history of impeachment reveals that partisanship is a more powerful motivator.
By hearing this case about the Second Amendment, the Supreme Court is declaring itself the only appropriate forum for remedying constitutional violations.
Advocates are arguing that the Thirteenth Amendment prohibits usurious loans.
Defenders of the Electoral College argue that it was created to combat majority tyranny and support federalism, and that it continues to serve those purposes. This stance depends on a profound misunderstanding of the history of the institution.
The president’s defenders argue that U.S. foreign policy is whatever he says it is. Trouble is, that’s not what the Constitution says.
And “attempted” bribery, even if unsuccessful, is still bribery all the same.
A consistent reading of the Constitution suggests that the current process of succession is constitutional—and that barring Trump from running again would not be.
Progressives used to argue that the Constitution doesn’t see race. Now conservatives have weaponized that same idea.
More than two centuries after it was designed to empower southern white voters, the system continues to do just that.
Congress should empower itself to more easily overturn Supreme Court decisions.
The same rules don’t apply now that the House has begun a formal impeachment inquiry.
And that means it’s Congress’s job to set boundaries around presidential power.
There’s no need to debate “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Bribery is enough for removal.
The American republic has lasted for more than two tumultuous centuries. But can it survive Donald Trump?
Recent cases have claimed that our founding document doesn’t defend noncitizens—even on American soil.
The organization has proved it can’t be trusted to fairly review nominees.
Constitutional limits don’t mean anything if they’re not enforced.
In their efforts to trash the Democrats’ investigation, the president and his defenders are trashing the Constitution along with it.
For more than half of the country’s history, potential impeachment defendants had wildly different rights from the ones they have today.
History and textual analysis aren't the only factors that matter. Our lives do, too.
But it’s different from the argument everyone thinks they’re making.
Trump draws fervent support from conservatives who believe the president is willing to restore the country to its moral and constitutional foundations.
Baseball is much more than a sport—it’s a wonderful example of a functioning legal system.
The constitutional standard for impeachment is different from what’s at play in a regular criminal trial.
Ever since the New Deal, Congress has given the executive far too sweeping a mandate to interfere with huge sectors of the market.
Congress and the White House have a tense relationship, and future administrations might well choose to build on rather than repudiate the Trump example of how to respond to a hostile Congress.
Some people are learning that their birth or naturalization certificates aren’t enough to prove citizenship—a problem that the Fourteenth Amendment should ideally prevent.
No matter which path the court takes, the destination will likely be the same—the end of access to safe, legal abortion for many women.
When the Court opens its October 2019 term, it will face a pressing criminal-justice question: Can states abolish the insanity defense?
Immigration restrictions have been held to a far lower constitutional standard compared with almost any other exercise of government power.
The system is rigged, and it’s the Constitution that’s doing the rigging.
Congress needs the executive branch to comply with its requests, not only to monitor an unruly president, but for the more basic work of writing legislation.
The latest struggle to define America's founding charter will define the country for generations to come.
The Founders never intended for the Court to be the final arbiter of what the Constitution means.
And judges need to be the ones to make them pay.
How will a system that is more than two centuries old meet the challenges of today?
In defining the scope of impeachment, they had in mind the alleged crimes of Warren Hastings.