• Is Money Speech?
    Articles,  Blog

    Is Money Speech?

    >>EUGENE VOLOKH: Is money speech? Say the government says you can publish a newspaper but only if you spend less than $1,000 or even $1,000,000 to do it. Or, you can build a church, but only if it costs less than $1,000. Or, you can hire a lawyer to defend you in a criminal trial, but you can’t spend more than $1,000. All of these would be obviously unconstitutional. Why? Because money is the press? Or money is religion? Or money is a lawyer? Obviously not. Instead, it is because restricting spending money to exercise a Constitutional right: press, religion, counsel, unconstitutionally interferes with that right. The same is true…

  • Can States Ignore Federal Law?
    Articles,  Blog

    Can States Ignore Federal Law?

    On February 8th, Alabama’s Chief Justice Roy Moore issued a last-minute order to Alabama probate judges to deny same sex marriage licenses. This directly conflicted with a federal court decision on January 23rd, which legalized gay marriage in the state of Alabama. So, what happens now? Are states able to defy federal law? First off, as you may know, federal laws apply to the whole United States, and state laws apply to just the state. When a conflict between federal and state law arises, Article 6, Clause 2 of the Constitution, AKA the Supremacy Clause, says that federal law trumps state law. So, how is Alabama able to defy the…