Day: February 7, 2017

Guest on Fox Business “Making Money” to talk about 9th Circuit Arguments, While Arguments Were Ongoing

Today I was invited to appear on the Fox Business show “Making Money” with host Charles Payne to discuss the oral arguments in Washington v. Trump. The segment was to begin at 6:15 ET. Of course, the arguments were ongoing at that time, which made my task especially difficulty. To be as prepared as possible, I sat in the chair with the IFB in my right ear, and the YouTube feed in the left. I only yanked the YouTube feed out moments before I went on the air. At that time, I had heard enough of the DOJ’s argument to realize that the EO was in trouble.

The actual act of being on live cable news is bizarre. I am sitting in a trailer in an industrial part of town, in an empty room, staring at a camera, with no idea who I’m looking at. (I deliberately do not want to watch the TV because it will draw my eyes away from the camera; the trick is to always maintain eye contact so you don’t look shifty). Here are some pictures to recreate the ambiance, if I can call it that.

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Editorial I never thought I’d be quoted in: “Time to stop calling everything Trump does ‘unprecedented’”

I admit it. I overuse the word unprecedented. I wrote a book by that title, and frequently invoke it when I’m discussing constitutional law with reporters or journalists. Much to my surprise, the New York Post’s editorial page quoted me in an article titled, of all things, “Time to stop calling everything Trump does ‘unprecedented.’”

On CNN, Dean Obeidallah called it “bone-chilling” and warned of a “dictatorship.” Slate termed it a “temper tantrum.” Others saw an unprecedented attempt to “delegitimize” the judiciary (never mind all the lefties insisting Trump is not their president).

But, as law prof Josh Blackman gently puts it, Trump is far from the only president to “question the legitimacy of judicial decisions.” Obama publicly — during a State of the Union Address, no less — bashed the Supreme Court justices (to their faces) after their Citizens United ruling.

More to the point, as challenges to his health-care law moved through the courts, he warned of “unelected” justices nixing a law passed by “a democratically elected Congress.” (And other top Democrats suggested they’d even call the high court’s legitimacy into question if it ruled the “wrong” way.) Blackman, based on careful study, calls Obama the worst “offender in modern history” when it comes to opining on pending Supreme Court cases.

Well here, Trump’s statements are not unprecedented.

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ConLaw Class 8 – Scope of Federal Powers III

Class 8 – 2/7/17

Scope of Federal Powers III

  • United States v. Lopez (249 – 263)
  • United States v. Morrison (263 – 267)
  • Gonzales v. Raich (268 – 286)

The lecture notes are here.

United States v. Lopez

This is Thomas Edison High School in San Antonio, Texas, the site where Alfonso Lopez, Jr., brought a gun to school in violation of the Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990.



I obtained these (blurry) photographs from Lopez’s high school yearbook.




The caption reads “Rushing down the field, Alfonzo Lopez warms up before the game.”

United States v. Morrison

This is Christy Brzonkala, the plaintiff in what would become United States v. Morrison. I could not find a photograph of Antonio J. Morrison and James Crawford.



Gonzales v. Raich

This is Angel Raich, the lead plaintiff in Gonzales v. Raich.


Here is a photograph of Raich using a marijuana vaporizer.


Right to Left: Robert Raich, Angel McClary Raich, (a younger) Randy Barnett, Diane Monson, and David Michael at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, California.


Here is Raich finding out that the Supreme Court ruled against her cause.


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Prop1 Class 8 – Acquisition by Gift

Class 8 – 2/7/17

Acquisition by Gift

  • Introduction, 189-191
  • Problems, 191-192
  • Newman v. Bost, 192-198
  • Notes, 198-199
  • Gruen v. Gruen, 199-205
  • Notes, 205-206

The class notes are here.

If you don’t know why I am posting pictures of Britney Spears and Kim Kardashian, you didn’t read the notes closely enough 🙂 Apparently Kim gave it back.


kris humphries watch 171111

This video illustrates the Livery of Seisin.

The is Joseph F. Van Pelt, the intestate in Newman v. Bost.


Here is the Van Pelt house.


Here is his grave. His obituary is here.


This is the Klimt painting at issue in Gruen v. Gruen.


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