F104 | The New Court and Its Hard Right Turn


3:30 - 5:00 p.m.


10/14, 10/21, 10/28,
11/4, 11/11, 11/18

Six Sessions 

This course will consist of six classes starting in the first week of October, just as the Supreme Court begins its 2022-23 Term of oral arguments.  

The Court's new majority--with its three Trump appointments--has taken a radical turn to the right.  This turn encompasses much more than the reproductive and privacy rights cancelled by the Dobbs decision. It is a turn that will very likely reverse much of the twentieth century's constitutional law in civil rights and affirmative action, in election law and voter protection, in environmental and health regulation -- and much, much more.  It is a constitutional counter-revolution. 

We will begin with a close (and critical) examination of the claims of 'originalism' pioneered by Justice Scalia and now embraced by Justices Thomas, Gorsuch and Barrett.   

Successive classes will take up the key cases of the last term at the Court, together with one or two in the upcoming term. Thus, we will devote one class to the abortion decision, two to the curtailment of the powers of the government in environmental and gun regulation, and one to the two religion cases.

We will conclude with an overview of the coming Term and its cases, focusing most closely on the new majority's threats to affirmative action and election integrity.

Tom Gerety taught constitutional law through most of his career.  He retired as Collegiate Professor of law and humanities at NYU.  He headed up the Brennan Center for Justice and was president of both Trinity and Amherst Colleges. He has law and philosophy degrees from Yale. 

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