Sunday, 28 November 2004

Good Luck, Randy Barnett

I’m no big fan of Randy “Buy My Book” Barnett qua blogger, but after Lawrence Lessig, he’s my second favorite lawyer. I join Jim Lingren in wishing Mr. Barnett the best of luck Monday in oral argument before the Supreme Court in the case of Raich v. Ashcroft.

I’d love to see Raich win the case, but I’m not getting my hopes up.


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You’re probably right not to get your hopes up, but I’m with you on it. The feds have gotten out of control with the commerce clause, not to mention the damage done to the 4th and 5th amendments via the drug war. There is hope since SCOTUS has been getting a little more demanding on the commerce clause in recent years, but not on anything having to do with drugs.


Agreed on all counts, although I think you somewhat underestimate the ability of the Court to defy expectations. Plus having pro-drug-war amici like the AL, LA, and MS attorneys general on the side of Raich may be an indicator of the way the wind’s blowing.

I won’t go as far as to say that Wickard is bad law (even though I have my doubts, Wickard’s activities did have a meaningful effect on interstate commerce), but a pro-Ashcroft outcome in Raich would be.


I was just going to email Robert about this – it’s driving me insane not to be able to write about it. Interesting article in Reason a few days ago. This almost made my head explode:

At last year’s American Bar Association convention, Justice Department lawyer Mark Quinlivan warned that defending “states’ rights” has a disreputable past and a dangerous future. A consistent commitment to state sovereignty, he said, would allow states to opt out of national civil rights laws and revive racial segregation.

"States can't selectively assert their independence from the federal government on national issues," Quinlivan declared. "You cannot cherry-pick your federalism."


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