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Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law
Home 2010 (Page 6)
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A Canadian at Guantanamo Bay

Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court denied the request of Omar Khadr to block his military commission trial at Guantanamo Bay. Khadr is a 23 year-old Canadian citizen whose prosecution arises from acts he is alleged to have committed as a 15 year-old in Afghanistan. The Government of Canada, at the direction of Prime Minister Stephen

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Published on August 7, 2010
Author:          Filed under: hp, Omar Khadr, Richard Albert, Stephen Harper, Terrorism; Guantanamo Bay
 
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Proportionality and Justice Breyer’s New Book

The August 19, 2010 issue of the New York Review of Books contains an excerpt from U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer’s forthcoming book, Making Our Democracy Work: A Judge’s View. The excerpt discusses his view of constitutional interpretation in relation to the Supreme Court’s famous case endorsing an individual rights approach to the Second

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Published on August 6, 2010
Author:          Filed under: hp, Mark Kende
 
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Kenya says yes

With over half of ballots counted, it looks like Kenya’s constitution will indeed be approved by the public. Consistent with pre-referendum polls, the yes position seems to have well over 60% of public support. Remarkably, and surprisingly to many observers, the campaign before the referendum was carried out in a generally peaceful manner. Perhaps this

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Published on August 5, 2010
Author:          Filed under: hp, Kenya, Tom Ginsburg
 
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California’s gay marriage ban struck down as unconstitutional

American readers are likely to have heard this already, but this is sufficiently big to be of interest to readers elsewhere. Chief Judge Vaughn Walker of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, originally appointed by George Bush Sr., ruled today that Proposition 8, an amendment to California’s constitution prohibiting gay marriage

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Published on August 5, 2010
Author:          Filed under: David Law, equality rights, gay marriage, gay rights, hp, Proposition 8
 
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Looking like “yes” in Kenya

Kenyan citizens go to the polls tomorrow for an up and down vote on the new constitution. According to reports in the Daily Nation, voters are expected in record numbers. Despite early warnings from the government that funds were in short supply to support the election, ballots appear to be in place, a national holiday

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Published on August 3, 2010
Author:          Filed under: hp, Kenya, referenda, Zachary Elkins
 
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The unstable presidentialization of Japan’s parliamentary system

Scholars sometimes speak of the presidentialization of parliamentary systems. Japan’s political constitution has been moving in this disrection since the election of Junichiro Koizumi in 2001. In the Japanese system, MPs of the leading parties function as a kind of “electoral college” choosing as Prime Minister NOT their de facto leader BUT rather someone popular

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Published on July 26, 2010
Author:          Filed under: hp, Japan, Tokujin Matsudaira
 
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Georgian President seeks new draft

Georgian President Saakashvili on Wednesday submitted to parliament a draft of a new constitution that would limit the power of the presidency. The opposition has opposed the move, and some speculate that Saakashvili is “pulling a Putin”: empowering a prime ministership for himself to occupy once his term ends. This is a perverse side effect

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Published on July 22, 2010
Author:          Filed under: Georgia, hp, term limits, Tom Ginsburg
 
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“… far more onerous than the restrictions found in this Nation.”

In McDonald v. Chicago, Justice Stevens stated in dissent that “the experience of other advanced democracies . . . undercuts the notion that an expansive right to keep and bear arms is intrinsic to ordered liberty. Many of these countries place restrictions on the possession, use, and carriage of firearms far more onerous than the

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Published on July 21, 2010
Author:          Filed under: Claudia Haupt, Germany, guns, hp
 
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Constitution-making in Somalia

A fascinating, first-hand account of current UN-led constitution-making efforts in war-ridden Somalia — arguably one of the bleakest, most dysfunctional corners of today’s world — is offered by Professor David Cameron of the University of Toronto’s Department of Political Science. Professor Cameron, a prominent scholar of Canadian federalism and inter-governmental relations, has long been involved

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Published on July 21, 2010
Author:          Filed under: HP; constitutional design, Ran Hirschl, Somalia
 
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Veiled Equality and Secularism.

The New York Times recently described the newest developments in France to enact a prohibition on the wearing of the face veil. Some of the opposition of course came from religious groups. Meanwhile, as Miguel Schor has pointed out in a recent blog posting here, Argentina has essentially allowed same-sex marriage. Again, religious groups led

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Published on July 19, 2010
Author:          Filed under: hp, Mark Kende