Welcome to The Georgetown Law Journal Online

The Georgetown Law Journal Online, like the Journal, is a general legal publication that contains more informal blog posts as well as formal responses to in-print scholarship, scholarly... Read More

Upending a Global Debate: An Empirical Analysis of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Use of Transnational Law to Interpret Domestic Doctrine

Over the last ten years, judges, scholars, and policy makers have argued— quite vehemently at times—about whether U.S. courts should use transnational sources of law to interpret domestic legal doctrine... Read More

Monopolization Through Patent Theft

This Article explores how courts have created antitrust immunity for patent theft and why this rule is mistaken. Part I introduces basic antitrust concepts, including the antitrust cause of action for... Read More

On the Problem of Legal Change

Identifying legal change is an ordinary part of legal decisionmaking, but participants in those decisions regularly focus on different measures. A version of the problem arises when one observer points... Read More

The Law of “Not Now”: When Agencies Defer Decisions

Administrative agencies frequently say “not now.” They defer decisions about rulemaking or adjudication, or decide not to decide, potentially jeopardiz- ing public health, national security, or other... Read More

A Sentencing Commission for the Administrative State?

Since the 1980s, oversight of punishment in the federal criminal system has been centralized. A single body, the Sentencing Commission, regulates criminal punishment through the Sentencing Guidelines.... Read More

The Eagle and the Hare: U.S.–Chinese Relations, the Wolf Amendment, and the Future of International Cooperation in Space

On July 20, 1969, the Apollo 11 lunar module, Eagle, landed on the moon, definitively ending the space race with the Soviet Union and signaling what was hoped to be a bright new dawn for humanity. In... Read More

Educational Empowerment: A Child’s Right to Attend Public School

Josh Powell was fourteen years old when he realized he was falling behind academically. Homeschooled under Virginia’s religious exemption statute, Powell had never seen the inside of a classroom,... Read More

Skin in the Game: The Promise of Contingency-Based M&A Fees

In February 2000, The American Lawyer reported that the venerable law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore (Cravath) entered into an agreement to help its client, Time Warner Inc. (Time Warner), merge... Read More

Rulemaking as Legislating

The central premise of the nondelegation doctrine prohibits Congress from delegating its Article I legislative powers. Yet Congress routinely delegates to agencies the power to promulgate legislative... Read More

Military Courts and Article III

Few areas of the Supreme Court’s federal courts jurisprudence raise as many questions—and provide as few coherent answers—as the permissible scope of Congress’s power to invest the “judicial... Read More

Testing Tribe’s Triangle: Juries, Hearsay, and Psychological Distance

Since its inception, evidence policymakers have vacillated with respect to whether the rule barring hearsay evidence at trial is a doctrine designed to promote decisional accuracy or a doctrine designed... Read More

Law and the Art of Modeling: Are Models Facts?

In 2013, the Supreme Court made the offhand comment that empirical models and their estimations or predictions are not “findings of fact” deserving of deference on appeal. The four Justices writing... Read More

A Military Justice Solution in Search of a Problem: A Response to Vladeck

In “Military Courts and Article III,” our colleague and fellow law professor Steve Vladeck has made an original and important contribution to the literature on the interaction of military tribunals... Read More

Measuring How Stock Ownership Affects Which Judges and Justices Hear Cases

Under the federal judicial recusal rules, judges and justices who directly own stock in companies must recuse themselves in cases involving those companies. However, there has been little effort to measure... Read More

Death Penalty Drugs and the International Moral Marketplace

Across the country, executions have become increasingly problematic as states have found it more and more difficult to procure the drugs they need for lethal injection. At first blush, the drug shortage... Read More

Offensive Disclosure: How Voluntary Disclosure Can Increase Returns from Insider Trading

Can voluntary disclosure be used to enhance insiders’ insider-trading profits while providing legal cover? We investigate this question in the context of Rule 10b5-1 trading plans. Prior literature... Read More

A Statute by Any Other Name Might Smell Less Like S.P.A.M., or, The Congress of the United States Grows Increasingly D.U.M.B.

To wit, it appears to have occurred to a number of lobbyists, Hill staffers, Members, and other drafters of legislation that there is something to be gained rhetorically in our American institution of... Read More

Investing in Detroit: Automobiles, Bankruptcy, and the Future of Municipal Bonds

On July 18, 2013, Detroit, Michigan became the largest municipality in United States history to file for bankruptcy. Since the days of Henry Ford, Americans have been investing in Detroit by buying its... Read More

Lessons from the Alien Tort Statute: Jus Cogens as the Law of Nations

This Note considers a judicial practice that identifies jus cogens as the law of nations by evaluating Alien Tort Statute jurisprudence. While it is generally accepted that a norm belonging to jus cogens... Read More

At Least Somewhat Exaggerated: How Reports of the Death of Delaware’s Duty of Care Don’t Tell the Whole Story

In 1985, corporate law underwent a sea-change as the Delaware Supreme Court in Smith v. Van Gorkom found that the directors of Trans Union violated their duty of care when they sold the company... Read More

Criminal Law 2.0 – Preface to the 44th Annual Review of Criminal Procedure

Although we pretend otherwise, much of what we do in the law is guesswork. For example, we like to boast that our criminal justice system is heavily tilted in favor of criminal defendants because we’... Read More

Criminal Law 2.0 – Preface to the 44th Annual Review of Criminal Procedure

Although we pretend otherwise, much of what we do in the law is guesswork. For example, we like to boast that our criminal justice system is heavily tilted in favor of criminal defendants because we’d rather that ten guilty men go free than an innocent man be convicted. There is reason to doubt it, because very […]

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Measuring How Stock Ownership Affects Which Judges and Justices Hear Cases

Under the federal judicial recusal rules, judges and justices who directly own stock in companies must recuse themselves in cases involving those companies. However, there has been little effort to measure the impact of these recusals on the pool of judges and justices that hear cases involving publicly traded corporations. Our empirical analysis finds that […]

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Death Penalty Drugs and the International Moral Marketplace

Across the country, executions have become increasingly problematic as states have found it more and more difficult to procure the drugs they need for lethal injection. At first blush, the drug shortage appears to be the result of pharmaceutical industry norms; companies that make drugs for healing (mostly in Europe) have refused to be merchants […]

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Offensive Disclosure: How Voluntary Disclosure Can Increase Returns from Insider Trading

Can voluntary disclosure be used to enhance insiders’ insider-trading profits while providing legal cover? We investigate this question in the context of Rule 10b5-1 trading plans. Prior literature suggests that insiders reduce opportunities to profit from trades if their planned trades are disclosed. But disclosure might increase such opportunities because of an unappreciated characteristic of […]

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A Statute by Any Other Name Might Smell Less Like S.P.A.M., or, The Congress of the United States Grows Increasingly D.U.M.B.

As in other circuses, where clowns sometimes cry poignant tears, humor in the U.S. Congress can be tinged with a certain sadness. Under the actual Big Top the irony is deliberate. To wit, it appears to have occurred to a number of lobbyists, Hill staffers, Members, and other drafters of legislation that there is something […]

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Investing in Detroit: Automobiles, Bankruptcy, and the Future of Municipal Bonds

On July 18, 2013, Detroit, Michigan became the largest municipality in United States history to file for bankruptcy. Since the days of Henry Ford, Americans have been investing in Detroit by buying its most famous product—automobiles. They have also been investing directly in Detroit itself, buying a financial product called municipal bonds. Detroit, along with […]

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Lessons from the Alien Tort Statute: Jus Cogens as the Law of Nations

This Note considers a judicial practice that identifies jus cogens as the law of nations by evaluating Alien Tort Statute jurisprudence. While it is generally accepted that a norm belonging to jus cogens is sufficient to fall within the jurisdictional scope of the Alien Tort Statute, this Note examines the stronger claim that jus cogens […]

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At Least Somewhat Exaggerated: How Reports of the Death of Delaware’s Duty of Care Don’t Tell the Whole Story

In 1985, corporate law underwent a sea-change as the Delaware Supreme Court in Smith v. Van Gorkom found that the directors of Trans Union violated their duty of care when they sold the company to takeover specialist Jay Pritzker for $55 per share—a $17 premium over the prevailing market share price. The next year, Delaware’s […]

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