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

By Marriam Shah
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, so that in the eyes…

Repealing the Dickey Amendment to Promote Gun Violence Research

By Liza Scott
On March 12, 2018, President Trump retreated from the position he took in response to the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, calling for more comprehensive gun control measures.[i] Trump’s retreat was unsurprising considering Congress’s current trend of loosening, rather than tightening, gun control measures. In 2004, Congress allowed the Assault Weapons Ban to expire,[ii] and has never moved to renew…

Implications of the Constitutional Question Left Open in Jennings v. Rodriguez

By Katherine Kyman
On February 27, 2018, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Jennings v. Rodriguez.[i] The case was first argued on November 30, 2016. However, in the wake of Justice Scalia’s death, the Court split 4–4.[ii] After the addition of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the Court, the case was eventually reargued on October 3, 2017. The majority opinion was authored…

Whistle While You Work (But Only If the SEC Can Hear You): Dodd–Frank Whistleblower Protections After Digital Realty Trust v. Somers

By Das Adler
If a whistleblower reports a violation of a federal securities law to her employer, does the Dodd–Frank Act’s antiretaliation provision prohibit the employer from retaliating against her? Put another way, does the Dodd-Frank Act give a cause of action to an employee who has been fired for informing her boss of a co-worker’s illegal activity? According to a recent, unanimous…

Harris v. Hutcheson: Scant Protections Against Weight Discrimination

Only one state in the entire country bans weight discrimination–Michigan.[i] While legal protection and case law remain scant on the subject, research shows time and again the impact of weight discrimination. Studies consistently find that people who are described as overweight or obese are discriminated against at every stage of employment, from hiring, compensation, and promotion to discipline and discharge.[ii]…