7 More Cases Everyone Should Know from the Rehnquist Court

Lopez, Seminole Tribe, Romer, Virginia, City of Boerne, Printz, Morrison

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

Here is another preview of the 11-hour video library from our new book, An Introduction to Constitutional Law: 100 Supreme Court Cases Everyone Should KnowThis post will focus on the second batch of cases from the Rehnquist Court.

U.S. v. Lopez (1995)

Seminole Tribe of Florida v. Florida (1996)

Romer v. Evans (1996)

U.S. v. Virginia (1996)

City of Boerne v. Flores (1997)

Printz v. U.S. (1997)

U.S. v. Morrison (2000)

You can also download the E-Book or stream the videos.


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  1. Bush v. Gore would seem to belong here, unless it’s coming in the next group of cases.

    More generally, I am getting the feeling that this list overemphasizes structure of government cases like Flores and Printz, which really aren’t tremendously important but which libertarians care a lot about, and underemphasizes civil rights and criminal procedure cases. The omission of Miranda and Mapp from the Warren court was criminal (bad pun). And there’s a real dearth of First Amendment cases- how about the obscenity cases? Graduation prayers? How about sexual harassment cases- no lover for Vinson or Harris or Oncale?

    1. “No love”, I meant. Oops.

  2. Not having Miranda was bad, but whoa on Printz not being “tremendously important.” The anti-commandeering cases are YUGE, IMHO.

    1. Miranda is actually one of the few SCOTUS case everyone really does already know.

    2. Printz is important in terms of the structure of the government, but it doesn’t have a lot of real world applications. It’s what Professor Kerr used to call “symbolic federalism”- federalism rules that could be easily avoided by the federal government instead of hard limits on federal power.

      1. The existence of sanctuary cities are pretty big real world application of Printz I’d say.

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