Supreme Court Preview Provides a Special Look at the Future of Election Law

willisby Blake Willis, Class of 2018

The news lately has been full of different election law issues. While it is a presidential election year, with plenty of news-worthy stories, there have been numerous court cases from around the country in recent months which are appearing to reshape the way that the legal community looks at election laws. William & Mary is known for having one of the oldest and strongest Election Law Programs in the country. This year, the Supreme Court Preview, hosted by the Institute of Bill of Rights Law (IBRL), featured a high-powered panel which focused on the Court’s possible future in this highly charged area of the law. Moderated by Professor Rebecca Green, the Chair of the Election Law Program at the Law School, the panel featured four of the most prominent Election Law experts in the country, including: Paul Smith (Jenner & Block), Paul Clement (former Solicitor General) , Pam Karlan (Stanford Law School) and Lyle Denniston (SCOTUSBlog).

One of many panels that occurred as part of the Supreme Court Preview.

One of many panels that occurred as part of the Supreme Court Preview.

These experts focused on a number of different election issues including racial gerrymandering, the Voting Rights Act, race and politics in elections, voter suppression, different types of court review, and whether or not the court should even be involved in this area of the law. One thing they all certainly agreed upon, was that this area of the law is incredibly exciting and one of the most volatile areas of legal study occurring right now.

This is but one example of many from the Supreme Court Preview this month. The Preview, which takes place every September, features a Moot Court demonstration by some of the nation’s leading appellate advocates, and sessions focused on criminal law, civil rights, the Court and the 2016 Election, Business Law, Race and the Legal system, the legacy of Justice Scalia, and the current Supreme Court with only 8 members. Each year, the Preview is attended by numerous students, faculty, legal experts and practitioners from around the country and members of the public. It is one of the most popular events at the school and definitely something to look forward to each and every year, especially in years like 2016, where there is no shortage of legal debate around the country.

Click here to learn more about the Supreme Court Preview.

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