University of Denver

Constitution Day

On Constitution Day, Some Perspectives on the Rule of Law and an Independent Judiciary

Maddie Hosack
September 17 marks Constitution Day, commemorating the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787. Today, IAALS looks back on a series of perspectives we published in 2016—authored by leaders across our government, judiciary, and legal profession—which are grounded in a belief that an independent judiciary is crucial to...

The Framers Fought for a Constitution that would Stand Apart from Political Fray

Rebecca Love Kourlis
The United States Constitution will be 229 years old on September 17. The Constitution was the document that charted the course for our country, mirrored in significant part in state constitutions that followed. In one respect, the Constitution is like the rebar embedded in the concrete that supports our houses,...

Cash, Corruption, and the Rule of Law: Campaign Finance Reform Needs Another Look

Guest Post
Meryl Justin Chertoff
A couple of years ago at Aspen, Margaret Marshall, who retired as Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in 2010, issued a chilling warning about how nations lose the rule of law. Marshall, who spent her early years in apartheid South Africa, said that when the rule of law goes, it does so “...

Magna Carta, the Rule of Law, and the U.S. Constitution

Guest Post
H. Thomas Wells, Jr.
On June 15, 2015, members of the American Bar Association joined with their British counterparts on a water meadow on the banks of the Thames at Runnymede, county of Surrey, England, directly under the flight path of Heathrow Airport. This event culminated the celebration of the anniversary of perhaps the seminal...

The Gift of Judicial Independence

Guest Post
Keith Swisher
The Framers of the Constitution knew a few important things about people in general. People want power. They seek to impose their will on others. They make mistakes. And they think they know more than they actually know. The Framers were introspective enough to see that these pervasive human shortcomings would be...

Our Founding Fathers' Vision: An Enduring Rule of Law

Guest Post
Ruth V. McGregor
More than two hundred years ago, our Founders created and signed the Constitution of the United States. This codified, written constitution established that ours would be a nation governed by the rule of law. The concepts embodied in the phrase “rule of law” are both simple and complex. Its simplicity derives from the...