The Supreme Court and Election Law: Judging Equality from Baker v. Carr to Bush v. Gore

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NYU Press, Nov 1, 2003 - Law - 227 pages

In the first comprehensive study of election law since the Supreme Court decided Bush v. Gore, Richard L. Hasen rethinks the Court’s role in regulating elections. Drawing on the case files of the Warren, Burger, and Rehnquist courts, Hasen roots the Court’s intervention in political process cases to the landmark 1962 case, Baker v. Carr. The case opened the courts to a variety of election law disputes, to the point that the courts now control and direct major aspects of the American electoral process.
The Supreme Court does have a crucial role to play in protecting a socially constructed “core” of political equality principles, contends Hasen, but it should leave contested questions of political equality to the political process itself. Under this standard, many of the Court’s most important election law cases from Baker to Bush have been wrongly decided.

 

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Contents

What are Political Equality Cases?
14
A Misplaced Focus on Judicially Manageable Standards
47
Core versus Contested Equality Principles
73
Who Decides the Validity of Contested Political Equality Measures and Why?
101
The End of Individual Rights?
138
Political Equality and a Minimalist Court
157
TwentiethCentury Election Law Cases Decided by the Supreme Court in a Written Opinion
166
Justice Goldbergs Proposed Dissent to a Per Curiam Summary Affirmance in Harper v Virginia State Board of Elect
176
Notes
189
Index
221
About the Author
227
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Richard L. Hasen is Professor of Law at UC Irvine School of Law.

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