By Judithanne Scourfield Mclauchlan
Scourfield McLauchlan reviews how contributors of Congress perform circumstances prior to the very best courtroom. individuals have filed amicus curiae briefs each time period for the reason that 1977. The frequency of Congressional participation ahead of the court docket maintains to upward push, and it truly is now a fixture in ultimate court docket litigation. McLauchlan examines how frequently contributors of Congress take part as "friend of the court," what sorts of situations allure Congressional consciousness, what motivates Congressmen to dossier amicus briefs, and even if Congressional "friends of the courtroom" impact ideal court docket decision-making. She explores the consequences of this pattern for the foundations of separation of powers and judicial independence.
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Additional resources for Congressional Participation as Amicus Curiae Before the U.S. Supreme Court (American Legal Institutions) (American Legal Institutions)
National Press Books, 1992) and Ronald V. Dellums and H. Lee Halterman. Lying Down with the Lions: Public Life from the Streets of Oakland to the Halls of Power. (Boston: Beacon Press, 2000). 87 See, for example, Robert Pear. ” The New York Times, 18 June 1990, p. 4, p. 7. 88 Interview with Congressman Ron Dellums [MC5]. 89 752 F. Supp. 1141 (1990). 2d. 242 (1977). 86 24 Congressional Participation as Amicus Curiae challenging the arrest by the Capitol Hill Police of Vietnam War protestors on the steps of the Capitol.
146 I interviewed legal counsel from a variety of interest groups to learn more about their decisions regarding whether to solicit Members of Congress and to invite them to participate as amicus. 147 However, some Hill staffers surmised that the Congressional signatures could be useful for some interest groups in their fundraising efforts. One Congressman’s Chief of Staff speculated, “Certainly the advocacy groups benefit from having a Member of Congress on their brief. ”148 Interest groups follow the docket of the Court, and they are in a position to suggest to Members particular cases in which they should get involved.
S. 534 (1986). S. 889 (1979). Ct. 683 (1987). Members of Congress as “Friends of the Court” 47 While there are examples of Members joining with organized labor,141 civil rights and women’s groups,142 and other public interest groups,143 there are only two groups that stand out as “repeat players” in Congressional amicus participation: the Washington Legal Foundation (19 cases),144 and, to a lesser extent, the Allied Educational Foundation (8 cases). 145 141 In Heckler v. S. 728 (1984) the American Federation of Government Employees Union (AFL-CIO) joined Congressman James Oberstar to file a brief concerning public pension offset for Social Security benefits.
Congressional Participation as Amicus Curiae Before the U.S. Supreme Court (American Legal Institutions) (American Legal Institutions) by Judithanne Scourfield Mclauchlan