Constitutional Law

Prorogation, Prerogative, and the Supreme Court

October 3, 2019

When times are good for constitutional lawyers, they are bad for everyone else.  Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party, is in an almost unprecedented position.  He has lost his majority in the House of Commons, but is unable to bring about an election.  The majority of…

Recent Case: Planned Parenthood v. Hodges

April 3, 2019

The state of Ohio does not want women to have abortions.  This much is clear from the state legislature’s recent support for bills that would effectively ban abortion at six weeks.  In 2016, arguably as part of the state’s policy disapproving of abortion, Ohio enacted House Bill 294, which prohibits the Ohio Department of Health…

Recent Case: Gaylor v. Mnuchin

Can tax benefits “establish” a religion? Perhaps, but as long as they show neutrality, meaning “no preference” for religion, they can pass muster.  The Internal Revenue Code establishes numerous income tax exemptions, one genre of which falls under the “convenience-of-the employer” doctrine. This doctrine is primarily codified in 26 U.S.C. §119(a)(2), which exempts employer-provided meals…

Recent Case: Adams v. Governor of Delaware

March 12, 2019

Talk of Supreme Court reform is in fashion. With the increased trend toward overt politicization of judicial nominations and the dread of an enduring conservative majority on the Supreme Court, discussion of court packing now knocks at the door of mainstream politics. At least one presidential candidate has proposed how such packing might be accomplished,…

Will the Supreme Court Replace the Lemon Test?

March 11, 2019

The Supreme Court recently heard oral argument in American Legion v. American Humanist Association, which involves an Establishment Clause challenge to a 94-year-old cross on government property memorializing World War I veterans. The argument suggests that the Court wants to take its Establishment Clause jurisprudence in a different direction, but it might not be sure…