The Volokh Conspiracy

Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent


Podcast debate on the Carpenter cell-site case


I recently participated in a podcast debate on Carpenter v. United States, the pending Supreme Court case on Fourth Amendment protection for cell-site data. I was joined by Jim Harper, who is counsel of record for an amicus brief filed in the case on behalf of several libertarian groups. Harper's view is that collecting cell-site records is a search of the cellphone user's property that requires a warrant under the Fourth Amendment. My view is that it isn't a search implicating the user's rights at all. The debate was hosted by the Federalist Society as part of its practice group teleforum series, and it was opened up to Q&A near the end. Among the questioners who called in was former Virginia attorney general Ken Cuccinelli.

The audio runs slightly more than an hour, and you can listen to it or download it here. I'm biased, of course, but I think it's worth your time if you're interested in the Carpenter case. Comments welcome, as always.