Category «Constitutional Law»

Whistleblowers Are the Conscience of Society, Yet Suffer Gravely For Trying to Hold the Rich and Powerful Accountable For Their Sins

Lawyer, activist, author, and whistleblower Ashley Gjovik states: “I blew the whistle and was met with an experience so destructive that I did not have the words to describe what happened to me. I set out to learn if what happened to me is a known phenomenon and, if so, whether there are language and concepts to explain the experience. I found it is well studied. This article focuses on experiences like mine, where a still-employed whistleblower takes disclosures of systemic issues public due to inaction or cover-ups by the institution. This article does not intend to discount the other varieties of whistleblower experiences; instead, it seeks to explain, expose and validate the turmoil many whistleblowers in similar positions are often forced to endure alone.” Gjovik’s article is an extensively researched and documented history of major whistleblower cases in the United Stated, across sectors and decades.

Subjects: Civil Liberties, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Legal Research

Jan. 6 committee tackled unprecedented attack with time-tested inquiry

Claire Leavitt, Assistant Professor of Government, Smith College, presents an overview of the broad investigative powers of the Congress from the 1920s to the present. The latest investigation may be its most consequential to date. After 18 months, more than 1,200 interviews and 10 public hearings that presented 70 witnesses’ testimony, the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack released its 845-page final report late on Dec. 22, 2022. The report recommended that the Department of Justice prosecute former President Donald Trump on four criminal charges, including conspiracy and incitement of insurrection. The committee’s recommendation to prosecute a former president was unprecedented. But its investigation of the events of Jan. 6, 2021 fell squarely within Congress’ power, and added a new chapter to a centuries-long history of congressional investigations into government scandals and failures.

Subjects: Congress, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Election Law, Government Resources, Legal Research

No, an indictment wouldn’t end Trump’s run for the presidency – he could even campaign or serve from a jail cell

Donald Trump announced his 2024 run for the presidency on Nov. 15. In his address he railed against what he perceived as the “persecution” of himself and his family, but made scant mention of his legal woes. Confirmation of Trump’s White House bid comes at a curious time – a week after a lackluster Republican midterm performance that many blamed on him. Moreover, it comes as the former president faces multiple criminal investigations over everything from his handling of classified documents, to allegations of falsifying the value of New York properties. There is also the not-so-small matter of a Justice Department investigation into the Jan. 6 storming of the Capitol. The announcement has led some to speculate that Trump may be hoping that becoming a presidential candidate will in some way shield him from prosecution. Stefanie Lindquist, Foundation Professor of Law and Political Science, Arizona State University, answers critical questions including: does an indictment – or even a felony conviction – prevent a presidential candidate from running or serving in office?

Subjects: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Legal Research, United States Law

Policing Reimagined

The thesis of Albert Chang’s paper is the metaverse presents a unique opportunity for effective police reforms. Developers, data scientists, and legal sector experts working within the metaverse may be able to implement changes more efficiently than Congress as they are not subject to constitutional constraints. Chang advocates a position that the federal government should strongly consider the adoption of immersive technology to demonstrate that a more effective method of policing is possible. This paper is especially significant in light of the fact that last week Congress passed the CHIPS and Science Act which will bolster research with $290 billion in new funding.

Subjects: Blockchain, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Cryptocurrencies, Education, Health, Human Rights, Legal Research, Social Media, Technology Trends, United States Law

13 Ways Overturning Roe v. Wade Affects You (even if you think it doesn’t)

Kathy Biehl is a lawyer licensed in two states, as well as a prolific multidisciplinary author and writer. Roe v. Wade has been settled law during her entire career. In this article Biehl succinctly and expertly identifies how the upcoming Supreme Court decision in Dobbs V. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a draft of which was “leaked” on May 2, 2022, will impact many facets of our society as well as our democracy.

Subjects: Congress, Constitutional Law, Ethics, Health, Human Rights, Legal Profession, Legal Research, Privacy

How democracy gets eroded – lessons from a Nixon expert

Ken Hughes is a researcher with the Presidential Recordings Program of the University of Virginia’s Miller Center. Hughes argues that erosion in American democracy depends on the conspiracy theory, destructive and demonstrably false, that the 2020 election was stolen. As the author of several books on Richard Nixon – who, before Trump, was the biggest conspiracy theorist to inhabit the White House that we know of – Hughes sees conspiracy theories less as failures of rationality and more as triumphs of rationalization.

Subjects: Civil Liberties, Congress, Constitutional Law, Government Resources, Legal Research

Steve Bannon is held in criminal contempt of Congress, pushing key question over presidential power to the courts

Jennifer L. Selin Professor of Constitutional Democracy, reviews how this battle between the two branches of government over access to presidential information raises questions about the constitutional authority of Congress and how lawmakers acquire the information needed to hold the executive branch accountable in the U.S. system of separation of powers.

Subjects: Congress, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Government Resources, Legal Research, United States Law

Masks and mandates: How individual rights and government regulation are both necessary for a free society

Professor Martha Ackelsberg is political theorist – she studies how communities are organized, how power is exercised and how people relate to one another in and between communities. Through talking to friends, and thinking about the protests against COVID-19-related restrictions that have taken place around the country – she concluded that many people do not understand that individual rights and state power are not really opposites. The laws and policies that governments enact set the framework for the exercise of our rights. So, inaction on the part of government does not necessarily empower citizens. It can, effectively, take away our power, leaving us less able to act to address our needs.

Subjects: Civil Liberties, Constitutional Law, Healthcare, Legal Research, Legislative, United States Law

You have rights when you go to vote – and many people are there to help if there’s trouble at the polls

Despite all the challenges to this year’s election – long lines, calls for voter intimidation, baseless claims of fraud – voting is a fundamental civil right. As a political scientist who studies campaigns and elections, Daniel R. Birdsong has confidence in American democracy. Lots of people are working at the polls and behind the scenes to ensure election 2020 runs smoothly and safely. In this article Birdsong outlines your rights as a voter and explain where to turn if you encounter trouble at the polls.

Subjects: Civil Liberties, Congress, Constitutional Law, Free Speech, KM, Legal Research, Librarian Resources