Steven Calabresi

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Steven Calabresi
Steven Gow Calabresi

(1958-03-01) March 1, 1958 (age 65)
TitleClayton J. and Henry R. Barber Professor of Law
RelativesGuido Calabresi (uncle)
Academic background
Academic work
InstitutionsNorthwestern University
Federalist Society

Steven Gow Calabresi (born 1958) is an American legal scholar and the Clayton J. and Henry R. Barber Professor of Law at Northwestern University. He is the co-chairman of the Federalist Society. He is the nephew of Guido Calabresi, a U.S. Appellate judge and former dean of the Yale Law School.[1]


Calabresi graduated from the Moses Brown School in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1976. He then attended Yale College, graduating cum laude in 1980.[2] He received his J.D. degree from Yale Law School, where he was the Note & Topics Editor of the Yale Law Journal. After law school, he served as law clerk for Judge Ralph K. Winter of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Judge Robert Bork of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and Justice Antonin Scalia of the United States Supreme Court.

While at Yale Law School, Calabresi and two Yale College friends, Lee Liberman Otis and David McIntosh, founded the Yale chapter of the Federalist Society, one of the Society's three original chapters. In 2019, he was chairman of the Society's board of directors.[3] Calabresi is an active libertarian-conservative author and commentator.[4][5]

Calabresi joined the faculty of Northwestern Law School in 1990. He has been a visiting professor at Yale Law School (in the fall semesters of 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016), and a visiting professor of political theory at Brown University, where he has taught since 2010.

Political career[edit]

Calabresi served under presidents Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush from 1985 to 1990.[2] During that time, he advised Attorney General Edwin Meese III, and Reagan Domestic Policy Chief T. Kenneth Cribb, and wrote campaign speeches for Vice President Dan Quayle.[6] Calabresi supports legally recognizing same-sex marriages.[7] In 2016, Calabresi endowed the Abraham Lincoln Lecture on Constitutional Law at Northwestern Priztker School of Law in Chicago. The lecture's purpose is to show Lincoln's enormous talent as a constitutional lawyer and to reflect on what legal changes Lincoln's legacy might appropriately call for today.

With Gary S. Lawson, Calabresi has argued that the Mueller Probe was unlawful.[8][citation needed]

In July 2020, Calabresi wrote a New York Times editorial condemning a tweet[9] by President Trump that floated postponing the 2020 election. Calabresi said the tweet "frankly appalled" him, called it "fascistic", and said it was "itself grounds for the president’s immediate impeachment again by the House of Representatives and his removal from office by the Senate."[10]

On January 13, 2021, Calabresi and Democrat Norman Eisen co-wrote an op-ed in The New York Times saying that President Trump should be charged and impeached in a second trial before the end of his term in office or immediately after for what he said and did on January 6 and for his effort to subvert Georgia's election results by asking the secretary of state "to find" enough votes for him to win the state. The authors also said that the Senate should disqualify Trump from ever holding any public office again after convicting him. They wrote that the recordings of Trump's phone call and his speech to supporters on January 6 were enough evidence to convict on those charges.[11]

Selected publications[edit]

Calabresi has published more than 65 articles in law reviews, including:

  • Lawson, Gary; Calabresi, Steven (2019). "Why Robert Mueller's Appointment As Special Counsel Was Unlawful". Notre Dame Law Review. 95 (1): 87.
  • Calabresi, Steven G. "" A Government of Limited and Enumerated Powers": In Defense of United States v. Lopez." Michigan Law Review 94.3 (1995): 752-831.
  • Calabresi, Steven G., and Sarah E. Agudo. "Individuals Rights under State Constitutions When the Fourteenth Amendment Was Ratified in 1868: What Rights Are Deeply Rooted in American History and Tradition." Tex. L. Rev. 87 (2008): 7
  • Calabresi, Steven G., and Gary Lawson. "The Unitary Executive, Jurisdiction Stripping, and the Hamdan Opinions: A Textualist Response to Justice Scalia." Colum. L. Rev. 107 (2007): 1002.
  • Calabresi, Steven G., and Saikrishna B. Prakash. "The President's Power to Execute the Laws." Yale LJ 104 (1994): 541.
  • Calabresi, Steven G., and Kevin H. Rhodes. "The Structural Constitution: Unitary Executive, Plural Judiciary" Harv. L. Rev. 105 (1991): 1153.

He has written or edited several books, including:

  • Calabresi, S. G. (2007). Originalism: a Quarter Century of Debate. Regnery Press.
  • Calabresi, Steven G., and Christopher S. Yoo. The Unitary Executive: Presidential Power from Washington to Bush. Yale University Press, 2008.
  • Michael Stokes Paulsen, Steven G. Calabresi, Michael W. McConnell, Samuel Bray & William Baude, The Constitution of the United States. (Foundation Press 2010) [casebook] (2d ed. 2013) (3d ed. 2017).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ DeParle, Jason (2005-08-01). "Debating the Subtle Sway of the Federalist Society". The New York Times.
  2. ^ a b "Steven G. Calabresi". Northwestern Pritzker School of Law.
  3. ^ "Prof. Steven G. Calabresi". The Federalist Society.
  4. ^ Calabresi, Steven G. (2008-10-28). "Obama's 'Redistribution' Constitution". The Wall Street Journal.
  5. ^ Amar, Akil Reed; Calabresi, Steven G. (2002-10-05). "The Supreme Court's Unfree Speech". The New York Times.
  6. ^ "Steven G. Calabresi [CV]" (PDF). Northwestern Pritzker School of Law.
  7. ^ "Freedom to Marry, Freedom to Dissent: Why We Must Have Both". RealClearPolitics. 2014-04-22.
  8. ^ "Gary S. Lawson". Boston University School of Law. Retrieved May 10, 2017.
  9. ^ "Trump tweet on 8:46 AM · Jul 30, 2020".
  10. ^ Calabresi, Steven G. (2020-07-30). "Opinion | Trump Might Try to Postpone the Election. That's Unconstitutional". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-07-30.
  11. ^ Calabresi, Steven G.; Eisen, Norman (13 January 2021). "We Disagree on a Lot. But We Both Think Trump Should Be Convicted". The New York Times.

External links[edit]