The introductory portion of Chief Justice Robert's opinion reads like a primer on constitutional law. The Chief Justice lays out the basic structure of our constitutional system, including quotations from the two foundation cases in constitutional law authored by the great Chief Justice John Marshall: Marbury v. Madison and McColloch v. Maryland.
Roberts sets forth the concept of limited government simply and clearly:To read more or comment...
The United States Supreme Court upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act this morning. The decision of the Court is available here.
The justices upheld the individual mandate and almost all of the remainder of the statute by a vote of 5-4. Chief Justice Roberts delivered the opinion of the Court ruling that the mandate constitutes a "tax" and is therefore a valid exercise of Congress' power to tax and spend for the general welfare - the "power of the purse." Justice Ginsburg authored a concurring opinion in which she concluded that the individual mandate is a valid exercise of Congress' power under the Commerce Clause. Justices Kennedy, Scalia, Alito, and Thomas jointly authored a dissenting opinion in which they would have found that the entire Act was unconstitutional.To read more or comment...
The United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit has issued its decision in Gill v. Office of Personnel Management. The Court has ruled that the federal Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. The decision is available here.
I reviewed the facts of the Gill case and the decision of the District Court in a previous post, Federal District Court Rules DOMA Unconstitutional (July 8, 2010), and describe an important amicus brief that was filed in the case in Major Corporations, Law Firms, Civil Organizations, and Cities File Brief Opposing DOMA (November 10, 2011)To read more or comment...
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