DiscoverMore Perfect
More Perfect
Claim Ownership

More Perfect

Author: WNYC Studios

Subscribed: 162,189Played: 567,095
Share

Description

We’re taught the Supreme Court was designed to be above the fray of politics. But at a time when partisanship seeps into every pore of American life, are the nine justices living up to that promise? More Perfect is a guide to the current moment on the Court. We bring the highest court of the land down to earth, telling the human dramas at the Court that shape so many aspects of American life — from our religious freedom to our artistic expression, from our reproductive choices to our voice in democracy.
47 Episodes
Reverse
How does an elite group of nine people shape everything from marriage and money, to safety and sex for an entire nation? From the producers of Radiolab, More Perfect dives into the rarefied world of the Supreme Court to explain how cases deliberated inside hallowed halls affect lives far away from the bench.
We're Back

We're Back

2017-09-2802:17

More Perfect, the show that takes you inside the United States Supreme Court, is back on October 2, 2017.  Sex, race, guns, executive orders: Season two has it all. We'll see you in court.         
This fall, More Perfect is doing something brand new: We’re making an album!   It’s called 27: The Most Perfect Album. We’ve partnered with some of the best musicians in the world— artists like Dolly Parton, Kevin Morby, Devendra Banhart, Aisha Burns, and more — to create songs inspired by the 27 amendments to the U.S. Constitution.  Alongside the album, we’ll be launching SEASON THREE of our podcast, deep-diving into the history and resonance of the constitutional amendments with off-beat stories and lush sound.The album and podcast drop September 18, 2018. Get ready!
More Perfect has been dark for four years now. But next year, hosted by Julia Longoria, we're coming back! The past few weeks have been historic, to say the least, in Supreme Court history. So in the meantime, we want to hear from you. What do you want to know right now about the Supreme Court? What are your questions, your worries, your fears? Record a voice memo or write us a note and send it to moreperfect@wnyc.org.
Cruel and Unusual

Cruel and Unusual

2016-06-0241:432

On the inaugural episode of More Perfect, we explore three little words embedded in the 8th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution: “cruel and unusual.” America has long wrestled with this concept in the context of our strongest punishment, the death penalty. A majority of “we the people” (61 percent, to be exact) are in favor of having it, but inside the Supreme Court, opinions have evolved over time in surprising ways. And outside of the court, the debate drove one woman in the UK to take on the U.S. death penalty system from Europe. It also caused states to resuscitate old methods used for executing prisoners on death row. And perhaps more than anything, it forced a conversation on what constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. After you listen to the episode: The key links: - The invoice that revealed the identity of Dream Pharma - The email exchanges between Arizona and California officials regarding lethal injection drugs- Handwritten lethal injection protocols from Arkansas- An interview with Bill Wiseman, the Oklahoma state legislator who invented lethal injection in America, conducted by Scott Thompson of KOTV. The key voices: - Maya Foa, Director of Reprieve's Death Penalty team- Paul Ray, State Representative, House District 13, Utah- Robert Blecker, Professor at New York Law School, and author of, "The Death of Punishment" The key cases: - 1879: Wilkerson v. Utah- 1972: Furman v. Georgia- 1976: Gregg v. Georgia- 2008: Baze v. Rees- 2014: Glossip v. Gross More Perfect is funded in part by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation, and the Joyce Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell. Special thanks to Claire Phillips, Nina Perry, Stephanie Jenkins, Ralph Dellapiana, Byrd Pinkerton, Elisabeth Semel, Christina Spaulding, and The Marshall Project
The Political Thicket

The Political Thicket

2016-06-1044:342

When Chief Justice Earl Warren was asked at the end of his career, “What was the most important case of your tenure?”, there were a lot of answers he could have given. After all, he had presided over some of the most important decisions in the court’s history — cases that dealt with segregation in schools, the right to an attorney, the right to remain silent, just to name a few. But his answer was a surprise: He said, “Baker v. Carr,” a 1962 redistricting case.  On this episode of More Perfect, we talk about why this case was so important; important enough, in fact, that it pushed one Supreme Court justice to a nervous breakdown, brought a boiling feud to a head, put one justice in the hospital, and changed the course of the Supreme Court — and the nation — forever. Associate Justice William O. Douglas (L) and Associate Justice Felix Frankfurter (R) (Harris & Ewing Photography/Library of Congress) Top Row (left-right): Charles E. Whittaker, John M. Harlan,William J. Brennan, Jr., Potter Stewart. Bottom Row (left-right): William O. Douglas, Hugo L. Black, Earl Warren, Felix Frankfurter, Tom C. Clark. (Library of Congress)    Associate Supreme Court Justice Charles Evans Whittaker at his desk in his chambers. (Heywood Davis)  The key links: - Biographies of Charles Evans Whittaker, Felix Frankfurter, and William O. Douglas from Oyez- A biography of Charles Evans Whittaker written by Craig Alan Smith- A biography of Felix Frankfurter written by H.N. Hirsch- A biography of William O. Douglas written by Bruce Allen Murphy- A book about the history of "one person, one vote" written by J. Douglas Smith- A roundtable discussion on C-SPAN about Baker v. Carr The key voices: - Craig Smith, Charles Whittaker's biographer and Professor of History and Political Science at California University of Pennsylvania - Tara Grove, Professor of Law and Robert and Elizabeth Scott Research Professor at William & Mary Law School- Louis Michael Seidman, Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown Law- Guy-Uriel Charles, Charles S. Rhyne Professor of Law at Duke Law- Samuel Issacharoff, Bonnie and Richard Reiss Professor of Constitutional Law, NYU Law- J. Douglas Smith, author of "On Democracy's Doorstep"- Alan Kohn, former Supreme Court clerk for Charles Whittaker, 1957 Term- Kent Whittaker, Charles Whittaker's son- Kate Whittaker, Charles Whittaker's granddaughter The key cases: - 1962: Baker v. Carr- 2000: Bush v. Gore- 2016: Evenwel v. Abbott Music in this episode by Gyan Riley, Alex Overington, David Herman, Tobin Low and Jad Abumrad.  More Perfect is funded in part by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation, and the Joyce Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell. Archival interviews with Justice William O. Douglas come from the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections at Princeton University Library. Special thanks to Whittaker's clerks: Heywood Davis, Jerry Libin and James Adler. Also big thanks to Jerry Goldman at Oyez.
This is the story of a three-year-old girl and the highest court in the land. The Supreme Court case Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl was a legal battle that entangled a biological father, a heart-broken couple, and the tragic history of Native American children taken from their families. When producer Tim Howard first read about this case, it struck him as a sad, but seemingly straightforward custody dispute. But as he started talking to lawyers, historians, and the families involved in the case, it became clear that it was much more than that. Because Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl challenges parts of the 1978 Indian Child Welfare Act, this case puts one little girl at the center of a storm of legal intricacies, Native American tribal culture, and heart-wrenching personal stakes. A note from Jad: "As you guys may know, our new podcast More Perfect is Radiolab’s first ever spin-off show. But I want to share something special with you: THE Radiolab episode that inspired us to launch this whole series about the Supreme Court. After we put out this episode we got hooked on the court and the kinds of stories we could tell about it. So we made More Perfect. We reported this Radiolab story about three years ago. It’s about a little girl...but really it’s about so much more than that, too. Stay tuned to the end for an update about what has happened since." The key links: - An op-ed by Veronica's birth mom, Christy Maldonado, in the Washington Post- Marcia Zug's article for Slate on the original case that went to the South Carolina Supreme Court- Marcia Zug's article for Slate criticizing the Supreme Court ruling- An op-ed by the New York Times Editorial Board urging action from the Supreme Court- The official site for ICWA, the Indian Child Welfare Act The key voices: - Matt and Melanie Capobianco, Veronica's adoptive parents- Dusten Brown, Veronica's biological father- Christy Maldonado, Veronica's biological mother- Mark Fiddler, attorney for the Capobiancos- Marcia Zug, associate professor of law at the University of South Carolina School of Law- Bert Hirsch, attorney formerly of the Association on American Indian Affairs- Chrissi Nimmo, Assistant Attorney General for Cherokee Nation- Terry Cross, executive director of the National Indian Child Welfare Association- Lori Alvino McGill, attorney for Christy Maldonado The key cases: - 2013: Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl
The Imperfect Plaintiffs

The Imperfect Plaintiffs

2016-06-2801:06:021

Last week, the court decided one of this term’s blockbuster cases — a case that could affect the future of affirmative action in this country. The plaintiff was Abigail Fisher, a white woman, who said she was rejected from the University of Texas because the university unfairly considered race as one of many factors when evaluating applicants. And while Fisher’s claims were the focus of the case, the story behind how she ended up in front of the Supreme Court is a lot more complicated. Edward Blum is the director of the Project on Fair Representation (AEI) On this episode, we visit Edward Blum, a 64-year-old “legal entrepreneur” and former stockbroker who has become something of a Supreme Court matchmaker — He takes an issue, finds the perfect plaintiff, matches them with lawyers, and works his way to the highest court in the land. He’s had remarkable success, with 6 cases heard before the Supreme Court, including that of Abigail Fisher. We also head to Houston, Texas, where in 1998, an unusual 911 call led to one of the most important LGBTQ rights decisions in the Supreme Court’s history. John Lawrence (L) and Tyron Garner (R) at the 2004 Pride Parade in Houston (J.D. Doyle/Houston LGBT History) Mitchell Katine (L) introduces Tyron Garner (Middle) and John Lawrence (R) at a rally celebrating the court's decision (J.D. Doyle/Houston LGBT History) The key links: - The website Edward Blum is using to find plaintiffs for a case he is building against Harvard University- Susan Carle's book on the history of legal ethics- An obituary for Tyron Garner when he died in 2006- An obituary for John Lawrence when he died in 2011- Dale Carpenter's book on the history of Lawrence v. Texas- A Lambda Legal documentary on the story of Lawrence v. Texas The key voices: - Edward Blum, director of the Project on Fair Representation- Susan Carle, professor of law at the American University Washington College of Law- Dale Carpenter, professor of Law at the SMU Dedman School of Law- Mitchell Katine, lawyer at Katine & Nechman L.L.P. - Lane Lewis, chair of the Harris County Democratic Party- Sheila Jackson Lee, Congresswoman for the 18th district of Texas The key cases: - 1896: Plessy v. Ferguson- 1917: Buchanan v. Warley- 1962: National Association for the Advancement of Colored People v. Button- 1986: Bowers v. Hardwick- 1996: Bush v. Vera- 2003: Lawrence v. Texas- 2009: Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One v. Holder- 2013: Shelby County v. Holder- 2013: Fisher v. University of Texas (1)- 2016: Evenwel v. Abbott- 2016: Fisher v. University of Texas (2) Special thanks to Ari Berman. His book Give Us the Ballot, and his reporting for The Nation, were hugely helpful in reporting this episode.   More Perfect is funded in part by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation, and the Joyce Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
With the recent passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, there's been a lot of debate about how much power the Supreme Court should really have. We tend to think of the Supreme Court justices as all-powerful guardians of the constitution, issuing momentous rulings from on high. They seem at once powerful, and unknowable; all lacy collars and black robes. But they haven’t always been so, you know, supreme. On this episode of More Perfect, we go all the way back to the case that, in a lot of ways, is the beginning of the court we know today. Also: we listen back to a mnemonic device (and song) that we created back in 2016 to help people remember the names of the justices. Listen, create a new one, and share with us! Tweet // <![CDATA[ !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+'://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js';fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document, 'script', 'twitter-wjs'); // ]]> The key links: - Akhil Reed Amar's forthcoming book, The Constitution Today: Timeless Lessons for the Issues of Our Era- Linda Monk's book, The Words We Live By: Your Annotated Guide to the Constitution The key voices: - Linda Monk, author and constitutional scholar- Akhil Reed Amar, Sterling Professor of Law at Yale- Ari J. Savitzky, lawyer at WilmerHale The key cases: - 1803: Marbury v. Madison- 1832: Worcester v. Georgia- 1954: Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1)- 1955: Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (2) Additional music for this episode by Podington Bear. Special thanks to Dylan Keefe and Mitch Boyer for their work on the above video.  
Object Anyway

Object Anyway

2016-07-1649:521

At the trial of James Batson in 1982, the prosecution eliminated all the black jurors from the jury pool. Batson objected, setting off a complicated discussion about jury selection that would make its way all the way up to the Supreme Court. On this episode of More Perfect, the Supreme Court ruling that was supposed to prevent race-based jury selection, but may have only made the problem worse. James Batson (L) with his mother Rose (R) (Sean Rameswaram) Joe Gutmann with his students in the mock trial courtroom built at the back of Gutmann's classroom (Sean Rameswaram)   Joe Gutmann (L) and James Batson (R) sit together in Gutmann's classroom (Sean Rameswaram) The key links: -The prosecutor's papers highlighting black jurors from the trial of Timothy Tyrone Foster The key voices: - James Batson, the original plaintiff in Batson v. Kentucky- Joe Guttman, the prosecutor in James Batson's case- David Niehaus, lawyer at the Jefferson County Public Defender's Office- Jeff Robinson, director for the ACLU Center for Justice- Bryan Stevenson, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative- Stephen B. Bright, Harvey Karp Visiting Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School- Nancy Marder, professor of law at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law The key cases: - 1986: Batson v. Kentucky- 2016: Foster v. Chatman
American Pendulum I

American Pendulum I

2017-10-0147:491

What happens when the Supreme Court, the highest court in the land, seems to get it wrong? Korematsu v. United States is a case that’s been widely denounced and discredited, but it still remains on the books. This is the case that upheld President Franklin Roosevelt’s internment of American citizens during World War II based solely on their Japanese heritage, for the sake of national security. In this episode, we follow Fred Korematsu’s path to the Supreme Court, and we ask the question: if you can’t get justice in the Supreme Court, can you find it someplace else? Fred Korematsu, c. 1940s (Courtesy of the Fred T. Korematsu Institute)   Fred Korematsu, second from the right, is pictured with his family in the family flower nursery in Oakland, CA, 1939. (Courtesy of the family of Fred T. Korematsu, Wikimedia Commons)  The key voices: Fred Korematsu, plaintiff in Korematsu v. United States who resisted evacuation orders during World War II. Karen Korematsu, Fred’s daughter, Founder & Executive Director of Fred T. Korematsu Institute Ernest Besig, ACLU lawyer who helped Fred Korematsu bring his case to the Supreme Court Lorraine Bannai, Professor at Seattle University School of Law and Director of the Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality  Richard Posner, retired Circuit Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit The key cases: 1944: Korematsu v. United States The key links: Fred T. Korematsu Institute Densho Archives Additional music for this episode by The Flamingos, Lulu, Paul Lansky, and Austin Vaughn. Special thanks to the Densho Archives for use of archival tape of Fred Korematsu and Ernest Besig.  Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
American Pendulum II

American Pendulum II

2017-10-0233:312

In this episode of More Perfect, two families grapple with one terrible Supreme Court decision. Dred Scott v. Sandford is one of the most infamous cases in Supreme Court history: in 1857, a slave named Dred Scott filed a suit for his freedom and lost. In his decision, Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney wrote that black men “had no rights which the white man was bound to respect.”  One civil war and more than a century later, the Taneys and the Scotts reunite at a Hilton in Missouri to figure out what reconciliation looks like in the 21st century. Photograph of Dred Scott, c. 1857 (Uncredited/Wikimedia Commons) Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney (Library of Congress's Prints and Photographs division/Wikimedia Commons) Day 1 of the Dred Scott Sons and Daughters of Reconciliation conference at the Hilton Frontenac Hotel, December 2, 2016. Left to Right: Shannon LaNier (Thomas Jefferson descendant), Lynne Jackson (Dred Scott descendant), Bertram Hayes-Davis (Jefferson Davis descendant), Charlie Taney (Roger Brooke Taney descendant), Dred Scott Madison (Dred Scott descendant), Ashton LeBourgeois (Blow family descendant), John LeBourgeois (Blow family descendant), and Pastor Sylvester Turner. (C. Webster, Courtesy of the Dred Scott Heritage Foundation/Black Tie Photos) The key voices: Lynne Jackson, great-great-granddaughter of Dred and Harriet Scott, president and founder of the Dred Scott Heritage Foundation Dred Scott Madison, great-great-grandson of Dred Scott Barbara McGregory, great-great-granddaughter of Dred Scott Charlie Taney, great-great-grandnephew of Roger Brooke Taney, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court who wrote the Dred Scott v. Sandford decision Richard Josey, Manager of Programs at the Minnesota Historical Society The key cases: 1857: Dred Scott v. Sandford The key links: The Dred Scott Heritage Foundation  Harriet Scott, wife of Dred Scott, 1857 (Noted from “Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, June 27,1857.” Minnesota Historical Society/Wikimedia Commons) These quarters (now restored) at Fort Snelling in Minnesota are believed to have been occupied by Dred and Harriet Scott between roughly 1836–1840. (McGhiever/Wikimedia Commons) Special thanks to Kate Taney Billingsley, whose play, A Man of His Time, inspired the story. Additional music for this episode by Gyan Riley. Thanks to Soren Shade for production help. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
“It is an invidious, undemocratic, and unconstitutional practice,” Justice John Paul Stevens said of gerrymandering in Vieth v. Jubelirer (2004). Politicians have been manipulating district lines to favor one party over another since the founding of our nation. But with a case starting today, Gill v. Whitford, the Supreme Court may be in a position to crack this historical nut once and for all. Up until this point, the court didn’t have a standard measure or test for how much one side had unfairly drawn district lines. But “the efficiency gap” could be it. The mathematical formula measures how many votes Democrats and Republicans waste in elections — if either side is way outside the norm, there may be some foul play at hand. According to Loyola law professor Justin Levitt, both the case and the formula arrive at a critical time: “After the census in 2020, all sorts of different bodies will redraw all sorts of different lines and this case will help decide how and where.” The key voices: Moon Duchin, Associate Professor at Tufts University Justin Levitt, Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles The key cases: 2004: Vieth v. Jubelirer 2017: Gill v. Whitford The key links: “A Formula Goes to Court” by Mira Bernstein and Moon Duchin “Partisan Gerrymandering and the Efficiency Gap” by Nicholas Stephanopoulos and Eric McGhee  Special thanks to David Herman. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell. 
The Gun Show

The Gun Show

2017-10-1201:10:553

For nearly 200 years of our nation’s history, the Second Amendment was an all-but-forgotten rule about the importance of militias. But in the 1960s and 70s, a movement emerged — led by Black Panthers and a recently-repositioned NRA — that insisted owning a firearm was the right of each and every American. So began a constitutional debate that only the Supreme Court could solve. That didn’t happen until 2008, when a Washington, D.C. security guard named Dick Heller made a compelling case. Sean Rameswaram interviews Black Panther co-founder Bobby Seale on the roof of the Oakland Museum of California, where “All Power to the People: Black Panthers at 50” was on display earlier this year. (Lisa Silberstein, Oakland Museum of California)  Joseph P. Tartaro, president of the Second Amendment Foundation, at his desk in Buffalo, New York. (Sean Rameswaram) The key voices: Adam Winkler, professor at UCLA School of Law, author of Gunfight Jill Lepore, professor of American history at Harvard University Stephen Halbrook, attorney specializing in Second Amendment litigation Bobby Seale, co-founder of the Black Panther Party John Aquilino, former spokesman of the National Rifle Association Joseph P. Tartaro, president of the Second Amendment Foundation Sanford Levinson, professor at the University of Texas Law School  Clark Neily, vice president for criminal justice at the Cato Institute, represented Dick Heller in District of Columbia v. Heller Robert Levy, chairman of the Cato Institute, helped finance Dick Heller’s case in District of Columbia v. Heller Alan Gura, appellate constitutional attorney, argued District of Columbia v. Heller on behalf of Dick Heller Dick Heller, plaintiff in District of Columbia v. Heller Joan Biskupic, author of American Original: The Life and Constitution of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia  Jack Rakove, professor of history and political science at Stanford University  The key cases: 2008: District of Columbia v. Heller The key links: Black Panther Party protest the Mulford Act at the California State Capitol in Sacramento Dick Heller and his hat outside the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. (Sean Rameswaram) Dick Heller and his gun on the job at a federal building in Washington, D.C. (Sean Rameswaram) Special thanks to Mark Hughes, Sally Hadden, Jamal Greene, Emily Palmer, Sharon LaFraniere, Alan Morrison, Robert Pollie, Joseph Blocher, William Baude, Tara Grove, and the Oakland Museum of California. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
The Heist

The Heist

2017-10-1622:32

The Supreme Court may not have been conceptualized as a co-equal branch of the federal government, but it became one as a result of the political maneuvering of Chief Justice John Marshall. The fourth (and longest-serving) chief justice was "a great lover of power," according to historian Jill Lepore, but he was also a great lover of secrecy. Marshall believed, in order for the justices to confer with each other candidly, their papers needed to remain secret in perpetuity. It was under this veil of secrecy that the biggest heist in the history of the Supreme Court took place.  The key voices: Jill Lepore, professor of American history at Harvard University The key links: "The Great Paper Caper," The New Yorker (2014) Felix Frankfurter, Supreme Court justice 1939 to 1962 Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell. 
Enemy of Mankind

Enemy of Mankind

2017-10-2456:251

Should the U.S. Supreme Court be the court of the world? In the 18th century, two feuding Frenchmen inspired a one-sentence law that helped launch American human rights litigation into the 20th century. The Alien Tort Statute allowed a Paraguayan woman to find justice for a terrible crime committed in her homeland. But as America reached further and further out into the world, the court was forced to confront the contradictions in our country’s ideology: sympathy vs. sovereignty. Earlier this month, the Supreme Court heard arguments in Jesner v. Arab Bank, a case that could reshape the way America responds to human rights abuses abroad. Does the A.T.S. secure human rights or is it a dangerous overreach? The key voices: Ken Saro-Wiwa Jr., son of activist Ken Saro-Wiwa Sr. Dolly Filártiga, sister of Joelito Filártiga Paloma Calles, daughter of Dolly Filártiga Peter Weiss, lawyer at the Center for Constitutional Rights who represented Dolly Filártiga in Filártiga v. Peña-Irala Katherine Gallagher, lawyer at the Center for Constitutional Rights Paul Hoffman, lawyer who represented Kiobel in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum John Bellinger, former legal adviser for the U.S. Department of State and the National Security Council William Casto, professor at Texas Tech University School of Law Eric Posner, professor at University of Chicago Law School Samuel Moyn, professor at Yale University René Horst, professor at Appalachian State University The key cases: 1984: Filártiga v. Peña-Irala 2013: Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum 2017: Jesner v. Arab Bank The key links: Center for Constitutional Rights Additional music for this episode by Nicolas Carter. Special thanks to William J. Aceves, William Baude, Diego Calles, Alana Casanova-Burgess, William Dodge, Susan Farbstein, Jeffery Fisher, Joanne Freeman, Julian Ku, Nicholas Rosenkranz, Susan Simpson, Emily Vinson, Benjamin Wittes and Jamison York. Ken Saro-Wiwa Jr., who appears in this episode, passed away in October 2016. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
Citizens United

Citizens United

2017-11-0201:02:331

Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission is one of the most polarizing Supreme Court cases of all time. So what is it actually about, and why did the Justices decide the way they did? Justice Anthony Kennedy, often called the “most powerful man in America,” wrote the majority opinion in the case. In this episode, we examine Kennedy’s singular devotion to the First Amendment and look at how it may have influenced his decision in the case.  The key voices: Kai Newkirk, 99 Rise  Michael Boos, vice president and general counsel of Citizens United  Jim Bopp, lawyer, The Bopp Law Firm Marcia Coyle, chief Washington correspondent for The National Law Journal Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, a contributing editor of The Atlantic, and a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution Jeffrey Toobin, writer and contributor to The New Yorker and CNN Michael Dorf, professor of law at Cornell University and former clerk to Justice Anthony Kennedy Alex Kozinski, circuit judge in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and former clerk to Justice Anthony Kennedy** The key cases: 2010: Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commision The key links: Citizens United "Money Unlimited," by Jeffrey Toobin Correction: A earlier version of this episode misstated the date of the last day of the 2009 term.  Additional music for this episode by:  Gyan Riley  Kevin MacLeod "Bad Ideas (distressed)"Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ Special thanks to Justin Levitt, Guy-Uriel Charles, William Baude, Helen Knowles, and Derek John.  Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
The Hate Debate

The Hate Debate

2017-11-0637:472

Should you be able to say and do whatever you want online? And if not, who should police this? More Perfect hosts a debate at WNYC's Jerome L. Greene Performance Space about online hate speech, fake news, and whether the First Amendment needs an update for the digital age. The key voices: Corynne McSherry, legal director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation Elie Mystal, executive editor at Above the Law and contributing legal editor at More Perfect Ken White, litigator and criminal defense attorney at Brown White & Osborn LLP — he also runs Popehat.com The key cases: 1957: Yates v. United States 1969: Brandenburg v. Ohio The key links: ProPublica's report on Facebook's censorship policies   Special thanks to Elaine Chen, Jennifer Keeney Sendrow, and the entire Greene Space team. Additional engineering for this episode by Chase Culpon, Louis Mitchell, and Alex Overington. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation.  Watch the event below:   NOTE: Because of the topic for the night, this discussion includes disturbing images and language, such as religious, ethnic and gender slurs and profanity. We have preserved this content so that our audience can understand the nature of this speech. ADDENDUM: During the debate one of debaters misspoke and said World War II when he meant World War I. The case he was referring to can be found here.
Sex Appeal

Sex Appeal

2017-11-2357:131

“Equal protection of the laws” was granted to all persons by the 14th Amendment in 1868. But for nearly a century after that, women had a hard time convincing the courts that they should be allowed to be jurors, lawyers, and bartenders, just the same as men. A then-lawyer at the ACLU named Ruth Bader Ginsburg set out to convince an all-male Supreme Court to take sex discrimination seriously with an unconventional strategy. She didn’t just bring cases where women were the victims of discrimination; she also brought cases where men were the victims. In this episode, we look at how a key battle for gender equality was won with frat boys and beer.   The key voices: Carolyn Whitener, former owner of the Honk n’ Holler Curtis Craig, appellant in Craig v. Boren Fred Gilbert, lawyer who represented Craig in Craig v. Boren Mary Hartnett, adjunct professor at Georgetown Law Wendy Williams, professor emerita at Georgetown Law The key cases: 1873: Bradwell v. The State 1948: Goesart v. Cleary 1961: Hoyt v. Florida 1971: Reed v. Reed 1973: Frontiero v. Richardson 1975: Weinberger v. Wiesenfeld 1976: Craig v. Boren 1996: United States v. Virginia The key links: ACLU Women’s Rights Project My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsburg, with Mary Hartnett and Wendy Williams Sisters in Law by Linda Hirshman “What’s Wrong With ‘Equal Rights’ For Women” by Phyllis Schlafly   Special thanks to Stephen Wiesenfeld, Alison Keith, and Bob Darcy. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.
On a fall afternoon in 1984, Dethorne Graham ran into a convenience store for a bottle of orange juice. Minutes later he was unconscious, injured, and in police handcuffs. In this episode, we explore a case that sent two Charlotte lawyers on a quest for true objectivity, and changed the face of policing in the US. The key voices: Dethorne Graham Jr., son of Dethorne Graham, appellant in Graham v. Connor Edward G. (Woody) Connette, lawyer who represented Graham in the lower courts Gerald Beaver, lawyer who represented Graham at the Supreme Court Kelly McEvers, host of Embedded and All Things Considered The key case: 1989: Graham v. Connor Additional production for this episode by Dylan Keefe and Derek John; additional music by Matt Kielty and Nicolas Carter. Special thanks to Cynthia Lee, Frank B. Aycock III, Josh Rosenkrantz, Leonard Feldman, Tom Dreisbach, and Ben Montgomery. Leadership support for More Perfect is provided by The Joyce Foundation. Additional funding is provided by The Charles Evans Hughes Memorial Foundation. Supreme Court archival audio comes from Oyez®, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.  
loading
Comments (95)

Ashley hill

💚CLICK HERE Full HD>720p>1080p>4K💚WATCH>ᗪOᗯᑎᒪOᗩᗪ>LINK> 👉https://co.fastmovies.org

Feb 4th
Reply

Dylan

wow that guy at the end is a cunt

Dec 4th
Reply

chris181

I cant listen to this.

Dec 2nd
Reply

An-D

Read his biography it makes sense why he feels the way he feels.

Aug 6th
Reply

An-D

I just would hope they use the same vigor investigating liberal justices.

Aug 6th
Reply

An-D

Why stop at birth? What if a parent decides after birth that their child's disability is too much should they have the right to euthanize?

Aug 6th
Reply

An-D

This girl is a jerk. "Why do you laugh?" Get off your moral high horse and be an unbiased reporter!

Aug 5th
Reply

Melanie Marie-Jahnke Manning

So, the prosecuted who is supposedly "anti-racist," makes sweeping assumptions about people BASED ON THE COLOR OF THEIR SKIN. He doesn't even understand what racism is!

Jul 7th
Reply

Melanie Marie-Jahnke Manning

bloom, "at some point laws need to come to an end." what??

Jul 5th
Reply

An-D

People don't trust the news because it feels more like propaganda than truth seeking. Part of the problem being is that no one pays for news anymore.

Jul 4th
Reply

Melanie Marie-Jahnke Manning

Seems like that woman's problem was shame, and being coerced, not the abortion.

Jul 2nd
Reply

Joe A. Finley II

Probably the most nuanced decision Scalia ever had.

Jun 17th
Reply

Hassan Bagherzadeh

perfect podcast! great job!

Apr 25th
Reply

Hassan Bagherzadeh

absolutely was great!

Apr 14th
Reply

majopareja

I wish the announcement came under better circumstances, but still makes me so happy!

Jul 14th
Reply (1)

Seth Louviere

what would you do if someone was running at you and a tazer didn't stop him? and you didn't know if he had a weapon?

Mar 14th
Reply

Seth Louviere

I totally agree that we should always be open to what others have to say and decide for ourselves what is right and wrong. However, since these social media platforms are private entities, they have the right to censor what they want. If you don't like it, make your own platform or have an actual conversation with someone. This entire debate stems from the fact that we feel entitled to use social media. We forget that they're just companies letting us use their technology.

Mar 14th
Reply (1)

Emilie Winicker

i will never understand why this podcast thought making songs about the constitution was a good idea.

Jun 8th
Reply

Matthew Stephenson

Got to love Dick from the last story. Clearly completely mad and about 2 steps removed from reality in an almost loveable way

May 12th
Reply

Michelle McCurdy

The death penalty is cruel and unusual. Period. It's past time to end it and create a justice system focused on building human dignity, not punishment.

Oct 29th
Reply