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http://ssrn.com/abstract=1795624
 
 

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Justice Souter on Government Speech


Sheldon H. Nahmod


Illinois Institute of Technology - Chicago-Kent College of Law

March 25, 2011

Brigham Young University Law Review, Vol. 2010, p. 2097, 2010

Abstract:     
Justice David Souter, who replaced Justice William Brennan, was seated on October 3, 1990, and retired on June 29, 2009. As it turns out, Justice Souter’s tenure coincided exactly with the birth and development of the government speech doctrine in the Supreme Court. Rust v. Sullivan was handed down in 1991, and the most recent case, Pleasant Grove City v. Summum, was handed down in 2009.

This Article is modest in scope and primarily descriptive. I propose to address each of the nine Supreme Court decisions in which government speech is discussed either by the Court or by Justice Souter, with an emphasis on Justice Souter’s often differing and cautionary observations about the doctrine. I do not engage here at a normative level with the government speech doctrine, even though I am worried about the Court’s increasing use of the doctrine to avoid difficult First Amendment issues.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 20

Keywords: Justice Souter, Government Speech, First Amendment, Freedom of Speech

JEL Classification: K10

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Date posted: March 28, 2011  

Suggested Citation

Nahmod, Sheldon H., Justice Souter on Government Speech (March 25, 2011). Brigham Young University Law Review, Vol. 2010, p. 2097, 2010. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1795624

Contact Information

Sheldon H. Nahmod (Contact Author)
Illinois Institute of Technology - Chicago-Kent College of Law ( email )
565 W. Adams St.
Chicago, IL 60661-3691
United States
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