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  • Legal Memorandum posted September 20, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery, Tiffany Bates Overview of the Supreme Court’s October 2016 Term

    October 3, 2016, marks the beginning of a new Supreme Court term. The 2015 term included challenges to the use of racial preferences in college admissions, the Obama Administration’s immigration “executive action,” Texas’s law requiring abortion doctors to have admitting privileges at a local hospital, the Obamacare contraception mandate, and former Virginia Governor Bob…

  • Special Report posted August 30, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery, Stephanos Bibas, Josh Blackman, Richard W. Garnett The Legacy of Justice Antonin Scalia: Remembering a Conservative Legal Titan’s Impact on the Law

    Introduction Elizabeth H. Slattery In February 2016, Americans lost a legal titan with the passing of Justice Antonin Scalia. Conservatives mourn the loss of a standard-bearer, and liberals remember a worthy opponent. You may recognize the names of a handful of Supreme Court justices: the Great Chief Justice John Marshall, whose leadership of the Supreme Court in its…

  • Commentary posted July 25, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery The Scalia Election

    The just-concluded Supreme Court term starkly makes the case for why the Court should be at the forefront of every voter’s mind this November. The sudden passing of Justice Antonin Scalia in February led to deadlocks and compromises in some of the biggest cases of the term, highlighting the importance of every seat on the Court. Whomever the next president selects as…

  • Commentary posted July 25, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery Obama Can't Rewrite the Law

    The president does not have the power to create or rewrite legislation — that is Congress’s job. He is not authorized to dispense with or suspend the law. British kings made this practice familiar to the Framers of the Constitution, who deliberately chose to deny such a power to the president. Yet while history books are filled with disputes between the president and…

  • Commentary posted July 25, 2016 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery Why Republicans Should Not Fold On Garland's Nomination

    Some pundits, such as Leon Wolf at RedState, are urging Senate Republicans to quickly confirm President Obama’s nominee, Merrick Garland, to fill the Supreme Court vacancy left by the sudden passing of Justice Antonin Scalia in February. Wolf argues that there’s “absolutely no reason to drag this out any longer” because “Republicans must know that there is absolutely no…

  • Commentary posted July 25, 2016 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery Left Disappointed with "Old White Guy" Supreme Court Nominee

    Once a lecturer at the University of Chicago law school, President Obama returned to his old stomping grounds to make the case for confirming his Supreme Court nominee, D.C. Circuit Chief Judge Merrick Garland. Many on the Left have bemoaned the fact that Garland is “an old white guy.” More specifically, he’s a 63-year-old Jewish, Ivy-League-educated white guy. Several…

  • Commentary posted June 25, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery A Disappointing Decision, but More Lawsuits Are on the Way

    Yesterday’s ruling in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin was disappointing, to say the least. Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority opinion, allowing UT to continue using a race-conscious admissions program without sufficiently articulating its “diversity goal” or providing proof that it was meeting that goal, betrays his previous equal protection jurisprudence and the…

  • Testimony posted March 18, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery Executive Overreach in Domestic Affairs Part I—Health Care and Immigration

    Hearing before the Committee on the Judiciary Task Force on Executive Overreach U.S. House of Representatives March 15, 2016 Elizabeth H. Slattery Legal Fellow Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies The Heritage Foundation Mr. Chairman, Mr. Ranking Member, Members of the Committee: My name is Elizabeth Slattery, and I am a Legal Fellow in The Heritage…

  • Commentary posted February 25, 2016 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery Obama and Juan Williams Need a Lesson on the Constitution and the Facts on Judicial Nominations

    Someone should remind President Obama and Juan Williams what the Constitution actually says about confirming nominees. They seem unaware of how the process works. They also appear ignorant of the facts regarding the many judicial nominees the president has had confirmed over the past seven years. First of all, the claim by Juan Williams that race “has something to do”…

  • Legal Memorandum posted February 22, 2016 by Elizabeth Slattery Abortion, Admitting Privileges, and the Supreme Court: Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

    This term, the Supreme Court of the United States will consider its first major abortion-regulation case since 2007. Its ruling in this case could affect abortion safety standards in nearly half of the states. In 2013, Texas passed a law mandating that abortion clinics must meet the same cleanliness and safety regulations that ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) are…

  • Commentary posted December 21, 2015 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery Scourging Scalia: The Left's Latest Hissy Fit

    In other words, instead of students attending colleges that match their academic background, training, and credentials, the racially discriminatory admissions programs of universities like the University of Texas push many students into universities where they are in the bottom of the class from the very start of their college careers. This leads to lower grades, lower…

  • Legal Memorandum posted December 3, 2015 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery Discriminatory Racial Preferences in College Admissions Return to the Supreme Court: Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin

    This term, the U.S. Supreme Court is reconsidering whether it is constitutional for the University of Texas at Austin to use race in its undergraduate admissions decisions, to the detriment of some students and the benefit of others. In Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, Abigail Fisher argues that the school’s policy of giving racial preferences to preferred…

  • Legal Memorandum posted September 17, 2015 by Elizabeth Slattery Overview of the Supreme Court’s October 2015 Term

    On October 5, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States will begin its next term. The 2014 term featured a number of hot-button issues: free speech cases involving a “true threats” prosecution, the Confederate flag, and a local sign ordinance; property rights in the California raisin farmers’ case; religious freedom in a challenge to a prison’s ban on inmates growing…

  • Legal Memorandum posted September 10, 2015 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery One Person, One Vote: Advancing Electoral Equality, Not Equality of Representation

    In its October 2015 term, the Supreme Court of the United States will hear arguments in a case arising out of the Texas legislature’s use of total population in drawing the state Senate’s districts. This case, Evenwel v. Abbott, raises the issue of which population states can or should use when determining the legislative boundaries of representative districts. The…

  • Legal Memorandum posted May 7, 2015 by Elizabeth Slattery Who Will Regulate the Regulators? Administrative Agencies, the Separation of Powers, and Chevron Deference

    The Schoolhouse Rock classic “Three Ring Government” teaches children about the separation of powers embodied in the Constitution by comparing the three branches of government to a three-ring circus. The song explains that “no one part [of government] can be more powerful than any other.” The President is the “ringmaster of the government,” Congress is tasked with…