Prof. Kitrosser Quoted by Reuters on Justice Department Restrictions on Outside Speech by Immigration JudgesJuly 2, 2020
Professor Kitrosser is quoted in an article in Reuters on a Justice Department policy that bars immigration judges from speaking or writing in their personal capacities about immigration issues. In the article, Kitrosser explains that the Justice Department cannot get around First Amendment restrictions simply by defining any immigration-related speech as “official” in nature: “The case law does not work this way. … An employee only speaks in their official capacity when they are actually speaking in the course of doing their job. All other speech, including speech on matters that relate to their work, is personal capacity speech that can only be restricted if the speaker and public interest in the speech is outweighed by the government’s interest in suppressing it.” The article also cites Kitrosser’s observation that “The Supreme Court … has made clear that public employees have a crucial role in educating the public about their work.”
July 1, 2020
Professor Myron Orfield suggests in the Washington Post that the abandonment of policies to racially integrate schools and neighborhoods contributed to large racial gaps, despite increases in social spending in segregated schools and neighborhoods.
June 30, 2020
Professor June Carbone’s research on the administration of bail was cited in The New Yorker, in an article broadly examining the history and current state of the money-bail system. Citing a time when bail allowed the accused to remain free until trial only by identifying a guarantor for the amount that they owed if convicted—without putting up any money—the article quotes Carbone’s research naming this model the “last entirely rational application.”
June 26, 2020
Prof. Kristin Hickman’s remarks to the Wall Street Journal regarding the U.S. Supreme Court’s denial of certiorari in Altera Corp. & Subs. v. Commissioner, No. 19-1009, were featured in a Politico commentary regarding the same event. The Politico daily newsletter, “Morning Tax,” in a post entitled Making Sense of the Court on June 23, 2020, described Prof. Hickman as “perhaps the leading advocate for undercutting tax exceptionalism, the idea that taxes are so complicated or unique that they should be subject to different administrative rules” and took note of her suggestion that, irrespective of the denial of certiorari, the increased judicial scrutiny that the case represents will require Treasury and the IRS to take more care in drafting regulations.
Prof. Klass Quoted in Inside Climate News and Quartz on Minnesota AG Ellison’s Consumer Protection Lawsuit Against Fossil Fuel Companies for Climate-Related HarmJune 26, 2020
Professor Klass was quoted in two recent news articles—in Inside Climate News and Quartz—discussing the lawsuit Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison ’90 filed against Koch, ExxonMobil, and American Petroleum Institute under the state’s consumer protection laws seeking civil penalties and restitution associated with defendant’s actions and statements relating to the sale of fossil fuel products causing climate-related harm.
June 25, 2020
Professor Steve Meili was quoted in a MinnPost article regarding the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision rejecting the Trump Administration’s efforts to scuttle the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Because of that decision, over 700,000 “Dreamers” (undocumented persons brought to the U.S. as children and protected by DACA) need no longer fear imminent deportation. In the MinnPost article, Prof. Meili pointed out that the Supreme Court ruled on technical grounds, rather than the legality of DACA per se. It held that the reasons articulated by the Trump Administration for rescinding the program were arbitrary and capricous. This means that the Administration could revise its reasons in order to try and pass Supreme Court muster, but that is unlikely prior to the November elections. One item of note in the decision is that three of the Justices (Alito, Gorsuch, and Thomas) would have invalidated the program entirely.
Prof. Schwarcz Quoted in Bloomberg Law Regarding Court Venues for Insurance Coverage Lawsuits Brought on by COVID-19June 25, 2020
Professor Daniel Schwarcz was quoted in a Bloomberg Law article examining court venue fights between policyholders and insurers in business interruption coverage lawsuits brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Policyholders tend to see a better chance of success in state and local courts, while insurers are generally pushing to move these cases to federal court. “A lot of insurers feel they’ll get a fairer shake in federal court,” said Schwarcz. Federal judges aren’t elected, and “are perceived as being more removed from any politics” that could influence a decision.
June 24, 2020
Professor Eugene Borgida was quoted in a Popular Science article regarding, among other related topics, the implementation of implicit racial bias training for police and its impact on more equitable policing practice. Psychological science on what makes for an effective bias reduction program suggests that forced participation in [implicit bias training] tends to make participants defensive and untrusting, which makes for a less effective program, said Borgida. Slowly gaining the respect and interest of a few officers at a time may be a better strategy than mandating the process for an entire department, added Borgida.
June 23, 2020
Prof. Kristin Hickman was quoted in a Bloomberg article, “Supreme Court DACA Ruling Could Sway Environmental Permits’ Fate,” regarding certain administrative law implications of the Supreme Court’s reasoning in Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of the University of California. The Court in Regents rejected DHS’s rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for lack of adequate contemporaneous agency, relying in part on a precedent known as Chenery I to disregard a second agency memorandum offering additional justifications for DHS’s action. The article focused particularly on the significance of that part of the Court’s reasoning for a remedy for Administrative Procedure Act violations known as remand without vacatur, which is often used by lower courts in environmental cases to give agencies a second chance to explain their actions. Prof. Hickman was quoted as saying that the remand without vacatur remedy has always been in tension with Chenery I and that circuit courts considering the Court’s reasoning in Regents might be more cautious about using that remedy when agencies fail to explain themselves adequately.
Prof. Ní Aoláin Featured in Esquire on the Potential for Authoritarians to Abuse Emergency Powers During and After the Global COVID-19 PandemicJune 22, 2020
Professor Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, faculty director of the Human Rights Center, was featured in an Esquire article discussing the heightened risk for abuse of emergency power by authoritarian states during and after the global COVID-19 pandemic. “Historically, when a nation augments its arsenal of emergency powers, it’s very hard to put them back in the box,” said Ní Aoláin. “So there is grave danger that this repurposing isn’t short-term, and that the costs are going to be extremely high on fundamental rights, like the freedom of movement, speech, assembly, participation in elections.”