ABA Journal

Erwin Chemerinsky

25 ABA Journal Erwin Chemerinsky articles.

Chemerinsky: SCOTUS clarifies First Amendment debate over content regulation of signs

For decades, a central inquiry in free speech analysis has been whether government regulation is content-based or content-neutral. Content-based government regulations of speech generally must meet strict scrutiny. To be constitutional, they must be narrowly tailored to achieve a compelling government purpose. By contract, content-neutral regulations have only to meet intermediate scrutiny, being substantially related to achieve an important government purpose.

Chemerinsky: Supreme Court reflects nation’s deep divide over Constitution and religion

The U.S. Supreme Court has four important cases about religion on its docket. Each of these cases, individually and especially together, could bring about major changes in the law concerning the Constitution and religion, writes law dean Erwin Chemerinsky.

Chemerinsky: SCOTUS could make significant ruling on EPA’s authority to fight climate change—or not

In a term likely filled with blockbuster cases, West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency is an enigma: It could turn out to be unimportant and dismissed without a decision; it may be a major ruling on the scope of the EPA’s power; or it could be a huge decision about judicial review of agency decisions. The case, which was argued on Feb. 28, arose in an unusual procedural posture that may cause the court to dismiss it. But if the justices reach the merits, it could be a decision of great significance about environmental and administrative law.

Chemerinsky: Justice Breyer is a model for all who sit on a judicial bench

In some of the most ideologically divided areas of law, Justice Stephen G. Breyer has been consistently and forcefully liberal. But in other areas, sometimes Breyer was with the conservatives, even as the decisive vote.

Chemerinsky: Expect a momentous year ahead for the Supreme Court

Conservatives look at 2022 in the U.S. Supreme Court with great anticipation, while liberals feel dread for what is likely to come. But all, on both sides of the political aisle, agree that 2022 is going to be a momentous year for the Supreme Court.

Chemerinsky: The most significant Supreme Court cases of 2021

Although 2021 certainly had important developments in the U.S. Supreme Court, there also was a sense of it being a year of waiting for the blockbuster cases to come in 2022 on abortion rights, the Second Amendment, and separation of church and state. As we look back at the court in 2021, what was most significant?

Chemerinsky: Ruling in abortion cases will greatly affect women’s lives but won’t end controversy

On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which involves a Mississippi law prohibiting abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy.

Chemerinsky: SCOTUS continues to hold the line on qualified immunity

Two unanimous U.S. Supreme Court decisions on Oct. 18 show the justices are continuing to broadly interpret qualified immunity to limit suits against government officials, especially police officers. Perhaps this will help fuel pressure on Congress to enact a law to revise qualified immunity, but so far such efforts have passed the House of Representatives and stalled in the Senate.

Chemerinsky: Expect a truly extraordinary year at the Supreme Court

Every Supreme Court term has important decisions that change the law and affect people’s lives, but some years are blockbusters in the number of high-profile, significant rulings. The October 2021 term, which begins on Monday, Oct. 4, promises to be such a year. It is the first full term with the court’s current composition.

Chemerinsky: The Supreme Court has done a poor job protecting against police abuse of power and racism

Following the death of George Floyd, the nation focused attention on the enormous problems of police violence and racism in law enforcement, but there is a failure to put blame where much belongs: on the United States Supreme Court.

Chemerinsky: The SCOTUS sleeper cases of the October 2020 term

The U.S. Supreme Court’s October 2020 term, which ended on July 1, had major rulings that attracted media attention, such as its narrow interpretation of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and its ruling expanding the protections of the free exercise clause of the First Amendment. There also were some cases that attracted relatively little attention but that have the potential to have significant effects on the work of lawyers and judges throughout the country. Here are two of them.

Chemerinsky: Supreme Court looks to common law for guidance in Fourth Amendment cases

The Supreme Court decided three cases concerning the Fourth Amendment during the October 2020 term. They shared several characteristics.

Chemerinsky: Precedent seems to matter little in the Roberts Court

How much weight does the Roberts Court give to precedent? This is the crucial underlying question now that the U.S. Supreme Court has granted review in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which puts the fate of Roe v. Wade before the justices. The case concerns a Mississippi law that prohibits abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy.

Chemerinsky: Despite SCOTUS ruling, questions of personal jurisdiction remain unsettled

Ford Motor Co. v. Montana Eighth Judicial District is important in clarifying the law of personal jurisdiction, but it also raises many questions that will confront lower state and federal courts and ultimately need Supreme Court resolution.

Chemerinsky: SCOTUS weighs whether freedom of speech applies to students off campus using social media

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear its last oral arguments of the term in April, and it will finish with a First Amendment case of potential great importance. Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L. involves whether a student can be punished for speech on social media over the weekend.

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