Debate on “Gridlock” at the University of Chicago

November 20th, 2016

On Monday, November 7, (the day before the election) I debated Prof. Dan Hemel at the University of Chicago about my new Harvard Law Review article, Gridlock. The event was co-sponsored by the local chapters of the Federalist Society Chapter and the American Constitution Society. Unlike most events that are styled as a debate, this was *actually* a debate, and we went back and forth quite vigorously. My favorite part was my segue from Dan’s conclusion to my opening (as transcribed on the UChicago FedSoc Facebook page):

Hemel: The last six years have not been years of gridlock. They have been years of one-lane traffic, slowly but surely allowing important regulatory developments. And that one lane that has been open has been executive action.

Blackman: That sounds like an open road, alright—a road to serfdom. Gridlock is not a bug but a feature. What you call obstacles to progress I call bulwarks of liberty.

It gets better. Fittingly, we presented inside the Barrack Obama classroom at Chicago. Outside the classroom is a picture of the former Senior Lecturer, though I understand after his April 2016 visit (to pitch Merrick Garland), POTUS signed it.

Listen to the debate here.