User:Skyfaller/Con Law

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This page roughly corresponds to the syllabus/outline for my Constitutional Law class at George Mason Law.

Judicial Power[edit]

Legislative Power[edit]

Executive Power[edit]

Executive Power, Domestic Authority and the War Power[edit]

  • Executive order
  • Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer (1952) - The President can't seize private property in the absence of either specifically enumerated authority under Article Two of the United States Constitution or statutory authority conferred on him by Congress.
  • Ex parte Milligan (1866) - suspension of Habeas Corpus when civilian courts are still operating is unconstitutional.
  • Ex parte Quirin (1942) - German spies during WWII get executed, big surprise
  • Hirabayashi v. United States (1943) - STUB - Curfew on Japanese
  • Korematsu v. United States (1944) - Japanese internment
  • Hamdi v. Rumsfeld (2004) - detainees who are U.S. citizens must have the ability to challenge their detention before an impartial judge.
  • Hamdan v. Rumsfeld (2006) - military courts in Guantanamo Bay aren't real courts and violate the Geneva Conventions
  • Boumediene v. Bush (2008) - Aliens held on US-controlled territory outside the US had a right to the habeas corpus under the United States Constitution and the MCA was an unconstitutional suspension of that right.

Executive Power, the President and the Bureaucracy to Appointment and Removal[edit]

  • Myers v. United States (1926) - the President has the exclusive power to remove executive branch officials, and does not need the approval of the Senate or any other legislative body.
  • Humphrey's Executor v. United States (1935) - quasi-legislative or quasi-judicial officers may be removed only with procedures consistent with statutory conditions enacted by Congress. President can't fire an FTC member solely for political reasons.

Executive Privilege and Independent Counsel[edit]

  • United States v. Nixon (1974) - rejected Nixon's claim to an absolute, unqualified executive privilege from the judicial process under all circumstances.
  • Morrison v. Olson (1988) - The Independent Counsel Act is constitutional, as it does not increase the power of the judiciary or legislative branches at the expense of the executive.

Executive Power, National Security, and Treaties[edit]

  • United States v. Curtiss-Wright Export Corp. (1936) - President had plenary powers in the foreign affairs field not dependent upon congressional delegation
  • Medellín v. Texas (2008) - while an international treaty may constitute an international commitment, it is not binding domestic law unless Congress has enacted statutes implementing it or unless the treaty itself is "self-executing"

Federal Power[edit]

Limitations on Federal Power -- Implied Powers[edit]

  • McCulloch v. Maryland (1819) - Maryland can't tax the federal Bank
    • Constitution grants implied powers to Congress for implementing express powers
    • States can't impede constitutional exercises of power by federal gov't

Limitations on Federal Power -- Commerce Clause[edit]

  • Gibbons v. Ogden (1824) - Steamboats... Congress can regulate navigation under the Commerce Clause
  • United States v. E. C. Knight Co. (1895) - Sugar Trust Case : the Sherman Antitrust Act could not suppress a monopoly in the manufacture of a good (as opposed to its distribution)
  • Champion v. Ames (1903) - STUB - Congress can completely ban commerce in a given good, such as lottery tickets
  • Wickard v. Filburn (1942) - Producing wheat on your own land for your own consumption still affects commerce and can be regulated. End of limits on the commerce clause?
  • United States v. Lopez (1995) - Commerce Clause doesn't give power to regulate firearms in school zones. 1st case since Great Depression to limit Commerce Clause powers!
  • United States v. Morrison (2000) - parts of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 were unconstitutional because they exceeded congressional power under the Commerce Clause and under section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution.
  • Gonzales v. Raich (2005) - Under the Commerce Clause, Congress may ban the use of cannabis even where states approve its use for medicinal purposes.

Dormant Commerce Clause[edit]

Elections - Term Limits[edit]

Dual Sovereignty - Traditional state functions[edit]

  • National League of Cities v. Usery (1976) - the Fair Labor Standards Act did not apply to state governments, such regulation of the activities of state and local governments "in areas of traditional governmental functions" would violate the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. overruled by...
  • Garcia v. San Antonio Metropolitan Transit Authority (1985) - Congress has the power under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution to extend the Fair Labor Standards Act, which requires that employers provide minimum wage and overtime pay to their employees, to state and local governments

Dual Sovereignty - Commandeering[edit]

The states are not sub-agencies of the federal gov't

  • Printz v. United States (1997) - Brady Bill can't allow the Federal government to draft the police officers of the 50 states into its service

Spending Power[edit]

In light of the spending powers, does restriction on the commerce clause matter?

  • South Dakota v. Dole (1987) - Congress may attach reasonable conditions to funds disbursed to the states.

Sovereign Immunity[edit]

11th amendment

  • Seminole Tribe of Florida v. Florida (1996) - Article One of the U.S. Constitution did not give the United States Congress the power to abrogate the sovereign immunity of the states that is further protected under the Eleventh Amendment. Such abrogation is permitted only where it is necessary to enforce the rights of citizens guaranteed under the Fourteenth Amendment.
  • Nevada Department of Human Resources v. Hibbs (2003) - the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 was "narrowly targeted" at "sex-based overgeneralization" and was thus a "valid exercise of its power under Section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment."