The Claremont Institute

December 12 CCJ Town Hall: Administrative Tyranny—Will The Court Rein In The Out Of Control Bureaucracy?

December 19, 2014
In our recent tele-town hall, Dr. John C. Eastman, Founding Director of The Claremont Institute’s Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence, is first joined by Karen Harned, Executive Director of the National Federation of Independent Business, and Anthony Caso, Director of the Constitutional Jurisprudence Clinic at Chapman University’s Fowler School of Law, to discuss two cases recently argued before the U.S. Supreme Court that address the power and authority of the federal bureaucracy. 

At the core of each of these cases we debate what power is granted by the people to the entities involved and the limits of that power. In the first case, 
Dept. of Transportation v. Assn. of American Railroads, our three experts focus on Congress’ ability to delegate its lawmaking responsibilities to other entities inside and outside the government. In Perez, Sec. of Labor v. Mortgage Bankers Assn., they discuss the limits to the bureaucracy’s power to alter agency regulations without giving public notice or allowing for public comment.  

Next, Dr. Eastman is joined by Kent Scheidegger, Legal Director of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation to discuss the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent consideration of 
Elonis v. United States, in which the Court considers the limits of freedom of speech.  

The First Amendment provides a very broad freedom of speech, but for generations we have recognized that the speech is not unlimited when it turns threatening or dangerous. In our age of social media, more and more communication takes place online, and in this case an ex-husband posted about his ex-wife on Facebook. She felt threatened; he claimed he was sharing his latest rap lyrics. Should the test of a “threat” turn on the speaker’s intent to threaten, or how it was received by the listener?