Taking Federalism Seriously: Lopez and the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban

52 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 1997 Last revised: 25 Sep 2008

David B. Kopel

Independence Institute; Denver University - Sturm College of Law

Glenn Harlan Reynolds

University of Tennessee College of Law

Abstract

In United States v. Lopez, the United States Supreme Court struck down the federal Gun Free School Zones law as not within congressional power to regulate interstate commerce. This article examines post-Lopez jurisprudence regarding the permissible scope of federal criminal law. Analyzing a wide variety of federal criminal laws challenged in post-Lopez cases (including arson, robbery, gun possession, drugs, violence against women, and abortion clinic disruption), the article shows how courts have followed or evaded Lopez. Studying the proposed federal ban on partial birth abortions, the article suggests that the ban is not a lawful exercise of Congress' interstate commerce authority.

Keywords: abortion, federalism, commerce clause, lopez, morrison

JEL Classification: K4, I1

Suggested Citation

Kopel, David B. and Reynolds, Glenn Harlan, Taking Federalism Seriously: Lopez and the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban. Connecticut Law Review, Vol. 30, No. 1, pp. 59-116, Fall 1997. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=45301

David B. Kopel (Contact Author)

Independence Institute ( email )

727 East 16th Ave
Denver, CO 80203
United States
303-279-6536 (Phone)
303-279-4176 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.davekopel.org

Denver University - Sturm College of Law

2255 E. Evans Avenue
Denver, CO 80208
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.davekopel.org

Glenn Harlan Reynolds

University of Tennessee College of Law ( email )

1505 West Cumberland Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37996-1810
United States
865-974-6744 (Phone)

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