Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center

Battle for the Constitution: Week of Mar. 16th, 2020 Roundup

March 20, 2020 by NCC Staff


Below is a round-up of the latest from the Battle for the Constitution: a special project on the constitutional debates in American life, in partnership with The Atlantic.

One Change That Could Make American Criminal Justice Fairer

By Daniel Epps, Associate Professor of Law, Washington University in St. Louis School of Law and William Ortman, Assistant Professor of Law, Wayne State University Law School

Daniel Epps and William Ortman articulate the need for a Defender General who would serve the interests of criminal defendants in front of the Supreme Court as a way to make the American criminal justice system fairer.

The American Presidency Wasn’t Built for Men This Old

By Joe Sam Robinson Jr., President, Georgia Neurological Institute and Buckner F. Melton Jr., Author of The First Impeachment: The Constitution’s Framers and the Case of Senator William Blount

Joe Sam Robinson Jr. and Buckner F. Melton Jr. argue that just as the Constitution sets out a minimum age for presidents, it should set out a maximum age.

Close the Churches

By John Inazu, Sally D. Danforth Distinguished Professor of Law & Religion and Professor of Political Science, Washington University in St. Louis School of Law

John Inazu says, in light of the threat of COVID-19, churches should close—and mandating that they do so would almost definitely be constitutional.

How a Fragmented Country Fights a Pandemic

By Polly J. Price, Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law and Professor of Global Health, Emory University School of Law

Polly J. Price surveys how, in a public health system shaped by federalism—where control is divided among federal, state, and local departments—the United States dealt with the influenza pandemic of 1918, and how those measures relate to today’s situation.

Why the Supreme Court Should Protect the CFPB’s Independence

By Richard Cordray, Former Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Richard Cordray contends that the Supreme Court should uphold the structure of the CFPB and the “for cause” removal requirement for the agency’s director, but that a slim majority of the Court may be inclined to allow the director to be removed at the president’s will.


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