Cato Supreme Court Review 2003-2004

Cato Supreme Court Review 2003-2004

Cato Supreme Court Review 2003-2004

Cato Supreme Court Review 2003-2004

Excerpt

This is the third volume of the Cato Supreme Court Review, an annual review of the most significant opinions of the Supreme Court of the United States. This volume includes cases from the term beginning in October 2003 and ending in late-June 2004.

For readers new to our pages, the Cato Supreme Court Review has three principal aims: First, it provides the earliest in-depth review of each Court term. The Review appears on Constitution Day—September 17—soon after the Court completes its work, and shortly before the next term begins on the first Monday in October.

Second, the editors believe that the Constitution is not a technical document of interest only to lawyers and judges. Rather, we aim to bring together top-flight contributors to analyze the term in a manner that will make the Court's work accessible, insofar as possible, to a diverse audience. Although the Review is a "law” book, in the sense that it is about the Court and the Constitution, it is written for all citizens interested in the Constitution and the Court's interpretation of it.

Third, and most important, the Cato Supreme Court Review has a distinctive point of view, which we happily confess: The Review analyzes the Court and its decisions from a classical Madisonian perspective, emphasizing the Constitution's first principles: individual liberty; secure property rights; federalism; and a government of delegated, enumerated, and thus limited powers.

Fundamental constitutional questions about Madisonian first principles were not in short supply this term, as the trilogy of much- watched "national security” cases amply demonstrated. Each of the cases presented disturbingly broad presidential claims to power— claims that went to the heart of what it means to live under a system of checks-and-balances. In Hamdi v. Rumsfeld and Rumsfeld v. Padilla, the president claimed the unilateral authority to declare an American citizen an enemy combatant and strip him of constitutional rights, including access to courts or counsel. And in Rasul v. Bush, the . . .

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