Federal Courts

Vague Criminality and Mass Incarceration: Will Dimaya End the Insanity?

April 17, 2018

Today, the Supreme Court decided Sessions v. Dimaya and struck down the federal definition of “crime of violence” as unconstitutionally vague. The statute, section 16(b) (along with its very analogous cousin, section 924(c)), has meaningfully contributed to mass incarceration, racial disparities in sentencing, and excessive sentencing at the federal level. Dimaya recognized that section 16(b)…

Leah Litman

Will the Federal Judiciary Remain a Check and Balance After Trump?

February 16, 2018

Donald J. Trump is no stranger to the power of judges. As a businessman, he bragged about how he used lawsuits to protect his brand and to dodge bad investments through the bankruptcy process. Then, as a candidate for President, he showed his clear disdain for the independent role that judges play in our democracy….

Kristine Lucius

An Old Solution to the Nationwide Injunction Problem

January 25, 2018

Samuel Bray’s Multiple Chancellors: Reforming the National Injunction addresses what has increasingly become the recipe for legal challenges to federal policies. File suit in a division with judges—or best of all a single judge—expected to be favorable to the challenger’s claim. Make sure that district is located in a circuit also predisposed to your legal…

Gregg Costa