Law & Politics/Social Science

The Social Production of Counterterrorism

Aziz Huq

From where is security against the risk of domestic terrorism elicited?  Our first instinct is often to turn to the State and its diverse apparatus of police, military, and intelligence agencies as the canonical supplier of protection against violent risk.  Yet some recent examples hint at a different dynamic:

In… Read More »

Jasmine Revolutions

Will the Internet help topple tyrants, or will it further cement their control?  Prominent skeptics challenge the notion that the Internet will help rid the world of dictators and, worse yet, hold that it may even assist autocrats in manipulating the public.  I defend the liberalizing promise of cyberspace.  Where… Read More »

The Age of Consent: When is Sexting No Longer “Speech Integral to Criminal Activity?”

Antonio M. Haynes

Jane met her boyfriend Jim at a high school football game. Jane was just a few days shy of sixteen at the time, and she and Jim, seventeen, instantly connected. They began dating, and, a few months later but before Jim’s eighteenth birthday, the two had sex together for the… Read More »

Resolving Election Error: The Dynamic Assessment of Materiality

Justin Levitt

Error will drive the result of at least one election in 2012. This is not a difficult prediction: though the Bush v. Gore election brought the issue to the national spotlight, photo-finish and error-laden elections recur in each cycle. As a practical matter, the prospect of error is unavoidable. Election codes are enormously detailed. Every detail creates the possibility of mistake. And in the aggregate, all of these mistakes create the near certainty of an outcome-determinative mistake somewhere. Yet despite the fact that errors are inevitable, neither courts nor scholars have developed consistent principles for resolving the errors when they occur.

I argue that the resolution of an election error should turn on its materiality. That is, deviations from procedure should generally preclude the counting of a vote only when the deviation is material to determining a voter’s eligibility or ballot preference. Read More »

Judicial Politics and the Rule of Law

Charles Gardner Geyh - Indiana University Maurer School of Law

According to legends dating back to the Renaissance, the ermine would rather die than soil its pristine white coat. The ermine so came to symbolize purity, and English judges adopted this symbol by adorning their robes with ermine fur. For their part, American judges took a more ermine-friendly approach, dispensing… Read More »

Against Flexibility

David Super - Georgetown University Law Center

This Article seeks to develop a theory of the best timing of legal decisions that is independent of questions about which individuals or institutions should make those decisions.  In doing so, it analyzes law as a productive enterprise.  Like any productive enterprise, law seeks to obtain necessary inputs at the… Read More »

Changing the People: Legal Regulation and American Democracy

Tabatha Abu El-Haj - Drexel University, Earle Mack School of Law

Introduction
In modern America, law pervades the practice of democratic politics—from the regulation of public assemblies to the minutiae of election administration—and the Supreme Court is perpetually asked to adjudicate political disputes. While we take this highly regulated political process for granted, it has not always been this way.
Today’s… Read More »

Chasing the Greased Pig Down Wall Street

Donald Langevoort - Thomas Aquinas Reynolds Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center

             Of all the questions about why the recent financial mess happened, the most troublesome have to do with why large, supposedly sophisticated financial institutions took on so much risk.  There are many possible responses, some of which are about informational asymmetries, others about agency costs and moral hazards, and… Read More »

Flexing Judicial Muscle: An Empirical Study of Judicial Activism in the Federal Courts

Corey Rayburn Yung - John Marshall Law School

Immediately following President Obama’s nomination of then-Judge Sonia Sotomayor to replace Justice Souter on the United States Supreme Court, critics branded her a “judicial activist” who would work without regard to the “rule of law.” Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay contended that President Obama “couldn’t have appointed a more activist… Read More »

Disaster Mythology and the Law

Lisa Grow Sun - J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University

More than five years have passed since Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, yet images from Katrina’s aftermath continue to haunt the American mind.  Many of the most shocking and disturbing images that remain with us today are not from photographs or news footage, but images constructed and seared in… Read More »