The War Chest Problem: Why Transferring Unspent Campaign Funds Violates The First Amendment

In an ideal world, political candidates would raise the exact amount of funds they would need to mount a winning campaign in the current election and spend every penny. Campaign finance jurisprudence implicitly assumes that candidates will do just that. In reality, incumbents raise funds even when they have no serious opponents and no realContinue reading “The War Chest Problem: Why Transferring Unspent Campaign Funds Violates The First Amendment”

A Deficit of Deserts: The Case for a Pandemic Excess Profits Tax

The global COVID-19 pandemic caused, inter alia, the economic balance in the United States to tilt wildly. In earlier decades, such extreme social and economic upheaval led Congress to pass a special tax on those who benefitted from the crisis, known as an excess profits tax. This paper analyzes the relevant tax policy considerations ofContinue reading “A Deficit of Deserts: The Case for a Pandemic Excess Profits Tax”

Fair Housing, Unfair Housing

ABSTRACT The Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, promulgated under the Obama administration and swiftly repealed under the Trump administration, was the most significant fair housing effort in decades. But for all its ambitions, the rule had a fundamental weakness. It was (intentionally) focused on process and not able to support prescriptive, readily-enforceable mandates to improveContinue reading “Fair Housing, Unfair Housing”

Plagiarism Pedagogy: Why Teaching Plagiarism Should be a Fundamental Part of Legal Education

As a practicing lawyer, if you aren’t plagiarizing, you’re committing malpractice. Litigators copy forms and arguments from winning briefs rather than bill their clients for reinventing the wheel. Transactional lawyers copy enforceable agreements to ensure their agreements are enforceable too. Partners routinely present documents prepared by associates (and sometimes even paralegals) as their own work.Continue reading “Plagiarism Pedagogy: Why Teaching Plagiarism Should be a Fundamental Part of Legal Education”

Edwards v. M’Connel: Hiding Behind Legal Principles

Edwards v. M’Connel[i] is cited by a Tennessee state law treatise on res judicata, the legal principle stating that a prior court’s decision is conclusive on another if it was “between the same parties or their privies.”[ii] Edwards’ importance to legal studies and slavery studies is far-reaching. Edwards is an example of how judges reinforcedContinue reading “Edwards v. M’Connel: Hiding Behind Legal Principles”

A “Host” of Problems: Airbnbs in Cincinnati, Ohio

Use of condos for hosting Airbnbs has become increasingly popular, not only in places like the Bay Area and Southern California, but also in Midwestern cities like Cincinnati, Ohio. As of October 2017, the Cincinnati Business Journal estimates that there are at least 580 active Airbnb hosts in the metro area.[i] Several of the mostContinue reading “A “Host” of Problems: Airbnbs in Cincinnati, Ohio”

Say Goodbye to Shopping Malls: America’s Shift Towards Technology and Ease

Despite 94% of American consumers who say that they believe doing business within their local communities is important, 2017 ended with a staggering number of over 6,700 brick and mortar stores closing.[i] Famous brands such as Walgreens, Nike, and Footlocker have decided to eliminate physical locations and shift their sales to the online market. WithContinue reading “Say Goodbye to Shopping Malls: America’s Shift Towards Technology and Ease”

“Uber v. Drivers”: The Battle for Employee Classification

The peer-to-peer ridesharing industry has been booming since Uber first went live in San Francisco in 2010. Presently, Uber has spread to more than 700 cities worldwide,[i] and is estimated to have more than two million active drivers.[ii] The ease and popularity of Uber’s services have inspired a remarkable amount of competition: in the UnitedContinue reading ““Uber v. Drivers”: The Battle for Employee Classification”

What Does it Mean to Discriminate “Because of . . . Sex”?

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 makes it illegal for employers to discriminate against their employees “because of . . . sex.”[i] In the half-century since the passage of Title VII, the definition of “sex” discrimination has broadened significantly. Originally, under the Act, “sex” referred just to biological sex.[ii] Eventually, this wasContinue reading “What Does it Mean to Discriminate “Because of . . . Sex”?”

Pardon Me? Reconciling The Pardon Power with Traditional Notions of Checks-and-Balances

Article II, Section 2 of the United States Constitution confers upon the president the “power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.”[i] The pardon power is broad, allowing the president to “release[ ] the offender from any punishment for her crime.”[ii] It “vitiates moral guilt for the offense,Continue reading “Pardon Me? Reconciling The Pardon Power with Traditional Notions of Checks-and-Balances”