Adam J. White Articles

Kennedy’s Question

How will the Court decide Hobby Lobby?
Apr 28, 2014

We often think of the Constitution as a two-part document: first the original 1787 text, which primarily establishes the government’s structure; and then the amendments, which primarily set forth our rights. But it’s not nearly that simple: Our government’s structure—its federalism and its separation of powers—was devised not just to promote energetic government, but also to secure individual liberty.

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Democrats Welcome War Czar, Even After Denouncing Bush's Czar

12:34 PM, Dec 10, 2015

Donald Rumsfeld once said that "you go to war with the army you have, not the army you might want or wish to have at a later time." He could have said the same for Presidents—we go to war with the president we have, not the president we might want or wish to have.

But Senate Democrats have a new wish: that President Obama appoint a new "czar" responsible for the nation's war with ISIS. Senator Harry Reid unveiled their proposal this week, saying that the "ISIS Czar" would be "one person, who is fully empowered and unifies the federal government's efforts in fighting ISIS."

And, he added, "I'm pleased that President Obama has taken a first step in this direction.

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Judging Roberts

The Chief Justice of the United States, ten years in
Nov 23, 2015

Is John Roberts a good judge? Ten years ago, President Bush appointed him chief justice of the United States. His anniversary, coinciding with the Supreme Court’s reconvening last month, naturally caused lawyers, scholars, and politicians to reflect upon his legacy on the Supreme Court.

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Justice Alito: Judicial Restraint Amidst The Court's 'Postmodern' Activism

7:04 AM, Jul 20, 2015

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg made news recently, when she said—bragged, it seemed—that she and her fellow liberals on the Court were going out of their way to stifle their individual voices in high-profile cases.

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Roberts Voted With Us, After He Voted Against Us

Hosted by Michael Graham.
4:30 PM, Jun 29, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with frequent contributor and legal scholar Adam J. White on the high court's three Monday rulings.

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Roberts' Burwell Decision Is Even Worse Than You Think

Hosted by Michael Graham.
2:00 PM, Jun 25, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with frequent contributer Adam J. White on the high court's 6-3 ruling in King v. Burwell and why it is even worse than you could imagine.

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Obama’s Reformation

He urged—and then forced—a conversation about religion and democracy
Jun 08, 2015

Had Jeremiah Wright’s antics not forced Barack Obama to expound famously on race in 2008, the most significant speech of his short Senate tenure would have been his 2006 remarks on religion and democracy. Appearing before Call to Renewal’s conference on “Building a Covenant for a New America,” Obama urged Christian activists and Democratic voters to reconsider the relationship between church and state. Mankind may have grappled with our dueling obligations to Caesar and 

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Obama Promotes Parks Just as It's Announced Library Will Lead to Destruction of Historical Park

"Every Kid In A Park" ... But Not That Park
11:09 AM, May 15, 2015

Schoolchildren visited the White House this week for the latest installment of the administration's "Every Kid in a Park" initiative.

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Faith for Another Lenten Age

6:09 AM, May 11, 2015

In his latest column expounding the themes of his new book, David Brooks reflects on how naked our public square has become. "As late as 50 years ago," he writes, "Americans could consult lofty authority figures to help them answer" the timeless questions of right and wrong, good and evil. But "all of that went away over the past generation or two"; today, "intellectuals are given less authority and are more specialized. They write more for each other and are less likely to volley moral systems onto the public stage."

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Beware of Russians Bearing Gifts

And presidential candidates who would accept them.
May 11, 2015

When Hillary Clinton first ran for president eight years ago, it was not hard to anticipate problems inherent in the Clintons’ wielding political power while also accepting foreign contributions to the Clinton Foundation. “If Hillary became president,” one prominent Democrat observed, “I think there would be all these questions about whether people would try to win favor with her by giving money” to the Clinton Foundation.

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Obama Admin: Religious Organizations Could Lose Tax-Exempt Status If Supreme Court Creates Constitutional Right to Same-Sex Marriage

2:05 PM, Apr 29, 2015

When arguing before the Supreme Court, a lawyer normally takes pains to convince the Justices that ruling in his or her favor in that particular case would not have dramatic consequences elsewhere. In Hobby Lobby, for example, Paul Clement urged that exempting his clients from part of HHS's contraceptive mandate would not open the doors to a flood of other exemptions. Or in DC v.

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Hillary Clinton and 'The Stench of Yesterday'

6:04 AM, Apr 13, 2015

Watching Hillary Clinton kick off yet another presidential campaign, it's hard to believe that the Clintons once were new on the national political scene. But of course they were new in 1992, a moment captured in War Room, the groundbreaking documentary of the '92 campaign. 

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Last Time Clintons Withheld Gov't Docs, Obama Urged Voters to 'Turn the Page' on Them

Obama blasted Hillary's secrecy in 2007.
7:07 AM, Mar 13, 2015

As the White House claims that it was caught off-guard by the Clinton email scandal, or that President Obama 

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Biden Was For The Senate's Constitutional Power Before He Was Against It

5:56 AM, Mar 10, 2015

According to Miles's Law, "where you stand depends on where you sit." And so when Vice President Joe Biden hyperventilates over Republican senators' criticism of the Obama administration's negotiations with Iran, we must take him with a grain of salt. He used to have a seat in the Senate; now he stands behind President Obama.

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The Roots of Roberts's Remark in King v. Burwell

12:41 PM, Mar 06, 2015

Chief Justice Roberts has said he likes mystery novels; once, as a lower-court judge, he invoked Sherlock Holmes's "dog that didn't bark." But at the King v.

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Justice Ginsburg, Concurring in the Administration's Judgment

2:31 PM, Mar 05, 2015

At yesterday's oral argument in King v. Burwell, the solicitor general made a surprisingly partisan quip about Congress.

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Kennedy's Constitutional Concerns, Then and Now

6:53 PM, Mar 04, 2015

Three years ago, Justice Anthony Kennedy voted to declare the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. So it should come as no great surprise that he expressed constitutional concerns in today's ACA case, King v. Burwell

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Malcolm X, Not Madison: Welcome to the Eric Holder Book Club

10:05 AM, Feb 27, 2015

Not long ago, Harvard Law School's Charles Ogletree told Politico that Eric Holder "is a race man":

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Podcast: Boehner's Netanyahu Invite Raises Questions About Obama's Foreign Policy

Hosted by Michael Graham.
2:29 PM, Jan 29, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with Adam J. White on his blog post "The Constitution Doesn't Let President Close Congress's Doors to Israel."

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The Constitution Doesn't Let President Close Congress's Doors to Israel

3:26 PM, Jan 26, 2015

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu's upcoming address to Congress, at Congress's invitation, is drawing significant criticism -- that much is no great surprise. What does surprise, however, is one particular criticism: that the event will be not just bad policy, but even unconstitutional

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War of Words: 'The Obama Administration Does Not Want a New AUMF'

5:31 PM, Jan 21, 2015

In last night's State of the Union, President Obama reiterated his call upon Congress to pass a new "AUMF" -- or Authorization for Use of Military Force -- against ISIS, rather than continuing to wage war pursuant to the original 2001 AUMF against al

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Conversations with Tip O'Neill

8:37 AM, Jan 13, 2015

As the new Congress settles in under Republican control, it can be easy to forget that Republican control of the House of Representatives is a relatively novel concept. Until Newt Gingrich's revolution swept the party into power in 1994, the GOP was accustomed to permanent-minority status.

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Roberts's Frost

A poetic justice.
3:29 PM, Jan 08, 2015

A few hours before the ball dropped in Times Square, the Supreme Court released Chief Justice Roberts's year-end report on the federal judiciary.

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Obamacare’s State of Crisis

Halbig, but King bigger
Nov 24, 2014

In their final push to enact Obamacare, Nancy Pelosi urged her fellow Democrats to “pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.” They probably should have found out first. Now they need the Supreme Court to “find” once again in their favor.

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Podcast: Will the Halbig Challenge Kill Obamacare?

Hosted by Michael Graham.
8:00 AM, Nov 20, 2014

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with Adam J. White on whether the Halbig challenge can kill Obamacare.

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Electing Federalism

States, not just senators, will check and balance the administration.
Nov 17, 2014

Tuesday’s elections reinforced constitutional checks and balances against the Obama administration’s excesses, but not just in the most obvious way. For all the attention rightly paid to the new Senate majority, there’s another important set of newly elected officials who may soon push back against federal overreach: state attorneys general. 

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The ACLU's Old Commitment to Liberty Infected With Partisan Ideology

10:25 AM, Oct 27, 2014

The possibility of Ebola breakouts in major American cities raises difficult questions of public health, public safety, and civil liberties. So it is no great surprise that states' efforts to quarantine persons exposed to the decision would be met with threats of federal lawsuits. More interesting, however, is the appearance of one particular organization as a critic of the quarantine: the American Civil Liberties Union.

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Heckuva Job, Mr. President

10:31 AM, Oct 03, 2014

If Mitt Romney had said in 2012 that a second Obama term would bring not just continued economic uncertainty, but also the re-emergence of international terrorist forces, Russia's invasion of the Ukraine, an illegal immigration crisis, a knife-wielding madman in the White House, a beheading in Oklahoma, and the Ebola virus in Texas, even the president's most paranoid critics would have told him to

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Major Mistake

1:19 PM, Aug 04, 2014

Back in the day when it was fashionable for the press to criticize the president and senior military officials for mismanaging a war--that is, from 2003 to 2009--such stories often focused on the colonels, majors, and captains who saw firsthand the practical problems with their superiors' approach and who pushed hard to change policy based on that hard-fought experience. 

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Our President, Just Bearly

1:40 PM, Jul 18, 2014

No columnist rivals Matthew Continetti's ability to contrast so starkly the president's exalted self-image with his actual smallness on the world stage. This morning's installment of his weekly Free Beacon column is perhaps the best example yet.

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