Category Archives: Constitutional Law

Constitutional law news articles, reiews, notes and blog examples.

Supreme Court Will Decide Whether Title VII Protects Gays and Transgender Individuals

The U.S. Supreme Court today granted review in three cases involving important questions of LGBT rights under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.  First the Court granted certiorari in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, (Docket No. 17-1618) (SCOTUSblog Case Page) and consolidated it with Altitude Express, Inc. v. Zarda (Docket No.17-1623) (SCOTUSblog Case Page) (see prior posting) in which it also granted certiorari (Order List 4/22/2019). The cases raise the question of whether Title VII's prohibition on discrimination "because of … sex" covers discrimination against employees on the basis of sexual orientation.Second, the Court granted review in R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC, (Docket No. 18-107, certiorari granted 4/22/2019 (SCOTUSblog Case Page) (See prior posting). The grant of certiorari was specifically on:Whether Title VII prohibits discrimination against transgender people based on (1) their status as….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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[Eugene Volokh] Crime to Tweet About People Intending to “Abuse” Them?

Mehros Nassersharifi is being charged with making "a telecommunication" "with purpose to harass, intimidate, or abuse a person at the premises to which the telecommunication was made" (Ohio Rev. Code § 2917.21(A)(1)), by creat[ing] a Twitter account named "Perrysburg Girls Ranked" and post[ing] numerous girls names which contained descriptions of their physical attributes in a derogatory and abusive manner, including a derogatory and abusive  manner, including a derogatory post about a female of Jewish ethnicity. The Twitter account apparently had at least 15 posts, which contained female student's names, with a number beside them, and a description of them. Many of the posts contained derogatory, harassing and abusive descriptions of their physical attributes. One of the posts contained a derogatory description of a female of Jewish ethnicity. The post read, "The Jew. Other than the fact that she should have been perished along….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Mueller's Mistake: A Criminal Trial is not an Opportunity for the Defendant to Clear his Name

by Michael C. DorfSpecial Counsel Robert Mueller accepted the Justice Department policy barring indictments of a sitting president. He could have nonetheless made a determination whether Trump would be subject to indictment based on his conduct as evaluated under the governing statutes and Justice Department policies if Trump weren't president, but Mueller declined to do so. Why? According to the Mueller Report (Vol 2, page 2):Fairness concerns counseled against potentially reaching that judgment when no charges can be brought. The ordinary means for an individual to respond to an accusation is through a speedy and public trial, with all the procedural protections that surround a criminal case. An individual who believes he was wrongly accused can use that process to seek to clear his name. In contrast, a prosecutor’s judgment that crimes were committed, but that no charges will be brought, affords no such adversarial opportunity for public name-clearing before an….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Mueller Report Excerpts: Volume II

Below is the first of two excerpts of the Mueller Report that will eventually appear in Howard Gillman, Mark A. Graber, Keith W. Whittington, American Constitutionalism (Vol. I): Structures and Powers (Oxford University Press: New York).  The questions are for students, but also for the general public.  Feel free to circulate, but please only use and quote with proper attribution. And let me know if you are teaching and would like an examination copy of GGW.@2019Robert S. Mueller, “Report on the Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election (Volume II) (2019)Evidence emerged during the summer and fall of 2016 election that the Russian government was attempting to interfere with the presidential election in the United States.  Russian entities conducted a social media campaign that favored Republican candidate Donald Trump and sought to discredit Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.  Russian intelligence services hacked the….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Dialing 911 Can Get You Evicted

The eviction of Beverley Somai for calling the police is part of a disturbing trend. Last year, Beverley Somai learned a brutal truth that too many people across the country face: Calling the police can get you evicted. In 2017, Ms. Somai and her adult disabled son moved to Bedford, Ohio, to seek housing stability and better educational and employment opportunities. However, a few months after settling in, Ms. Somai discovered that her neighbor played loud music at all hours of the night, making it impossible for her and her son to rest. Even worse, the neighbor began to intimidate Ms. Somai and her son by following them on their errands and lurking outside their home. She asked for help from her landlord, who told her to call the police. So she did. But then the city of Bedford sent a letter to Ms. Somai’s landlord, citing her calls for help and threatening to impose steep penalties for any future police responses to the property. Because of the letter, her landlord….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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