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Without the Filibuster, Justices Can Be Great Again
An op-ed by Noah Feldman
. After the nuclear option, what’s next? There really are only two choices to react to the Republican decision to eliminate the Senate filibuster permanently for Supreme Court nominations: mourning or celebration. So for the record, let me begin by saying that Judge Merrick Garland should’ve been confirmed after he was nominated to this seat by President Barack Obama, and that it’s tragic that Judge Neil Gorsuch, who is comparably qualified, will be confirmed in his stead. Then let me tell you how I feel now: I come to bury the filibuster, not praise it.
Are Donald Trump’s Airstrikes on Syria Legal?
...The 2011 bombing of Libya, initially meant to prevent a feared imminent massacre by Qaddafi’s forces in Benghazi, was authorized by a Security Council resolution and conducted under the auspices of NATO, but as Jack Goldsmith
pointed out on Lawfare last night, Obama’s Office of Legal Counsel also argued at the time that the president has the right to act unilaterally in defense of the “national interest,” which in the Libya case was “preserving regional stability and supporting the UNSC’s credibility and effectiveness”—language not all that unlike what Trump used last night.
‘Call to Action’: Harvard Students Launch Resistance School to Combat President Trump
For more than 15,000 students across the country, Wednesday marked the first day of Resistance School — a program where the educational focus is mobilizing against President Donald Trump's administration. "Each one of us has people in our lives who were disturbed by the outcome of the election and saw it as a call to action," said Joe Breen
, one of the Resistance School co-founders. He's a third-year student in a joint degree program at Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School. "We recognized that we had the opportunity to help them develop the skills that they would need to get involved in political action." Resistance School organizers — a group of Harvard graduate students — said a couple hundred people participated in the first lesson in person at the Ivy League campus in Boston on Wednesday, while about 15,000 people of all ages tuned in via livestream from 50 states and 20 countries. They estimated the total participation was even larger because students were encouraged to host watch parties in groups.
How Civil-Rights Law Can Apply to Sexual Orientation, Too
An op-ed by Cass Sunstein
. Everyone agrees that under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, employers are forbidden from discriminating on the basis of sex. Are they also forbidden from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation? In a momentous decision earlier this week, with large implications for employers all over the country, a federal court of appeals ruled that they are. Superb opinions were delivered by both Judge Diane Wood, author of the majority opinion, and Judge Diane Sykes, author of the dissent.
The Huffington Post
What Would Trump’s Deposal Mean For Democrats — And Are They Ready?
...By the hour, it seems, the legal and financial noose of convicting certainty is tightening around the necks of Trump’s campaign aides, and even some within his Cabinet, whose prime reason for appointment now appears to center around their ties to Russia. If some reports are to be believed, under the weight of mounting evidence, which could lead to his impeachment or imprisonment, Trump is ostensibly considering resignation. But don’t light up the fireworks — at least, not just yet...“As it stands today, the Constitution contains a serious design flaw,” Harvard Constitutional Law Professor Laurence Tribe
told me Sunday in an email communication.
The New York Times
Right and Left: Partisan Writing You Shouldn’t Miss
Taking a step back from the particulars of the Susan Rice story and the investigation into Russian collusion, Jack Goldsmith
and Benjamin Wittes explain the broader implications of an eroding public trust in the nonpartisanship of American intelligence agencies. After decades of misbehavior, including spying on American citizens for political ends, the intelligence agencies had lost credibility with the American public. In the 1970s, Mr. Wittes and Mr. Goldsmith write, the intelligence community entered a “grand bargain” with Congress that limited its power but restored its integrity. That “grand bargain” is now in peril.
DOJ criticized for consent decree review
A central issue was the decision this week of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to review the consent decrees the U.S. Justice Department had arranged with police departments after patterns of unconstitutional racial discrimination and excessive force, including the shootings of black men. Chiraag Bains
, senior fellow at Harvard Law School Criminal Justice Policy Program and former senior counsel to the assistant attorney general for civil rights under President Obama, cited the review as evidence the Justice Department has been “predictably disastrous” on civil rights. “This administration insists that policing is a purely local matter into which the federal government should not intrude,” Bains said. “But we’re not talking about a federal takeover of these departments. We’re talking about the enforcement and protection of constitutional rights. There is no federalism problem.”
Q&A with Samuel Garcia, author of ‘How A Goat Became Mayor…’
After Donald Trump won the presidential election on Nov. 7, Samuel Garcia
[`19] described the scene at Harvard law school as one of despair. Garcia, 22, called his brother Ricco Garcia, 26, to discuss the surprising election result. That conversation between the Rio Grande Valley natives would eventually lead to a new book co-authored by the brothers. “How A Goat Became Mayor and the Political Spring That Followed” is a true story about how a goat became mayor in a small Texas town after dissatisfaction with the local politicians. The book is the third for Samuel Garcia, who grew up in Mission. Garcia is now a law student at Harvard.
The Harvard Crimson
A Year Later, ‘House Master’ Title and Royall Seal Linger
...In March 2016, the Law School also took steps to address its historical ties to slavery—specifically, the Law School recommended discarding its former seal featuring the crest of the Royall family, slave-owners who endowed the school’s first professorship in the late 18th century. In the days following that decision, the Law School sought to physically remove all traces of the Royall crest from its campus and website...After being contacted by The Crimson, Law School Dean for Administration Francis X. McCrossan
wrote in an email that he was aware the school’s “large-scale” effort to remove the seal last year may not have been entirely successful. “We did away with the shield in all the places where we found it, but occasionally we still come across instances that weren't caught during that review,” McCrossan wrote.