Category Archives: Patrick

Shark Fins

The LPOV Group sits down for a wide ranging discussion of Article VI Clause 2, the Supremacy Clause.

Shark_finningWhen California passes a law that bans the possession, distribution or sale of Shark fins in the State, a Chinese-American Neighborhood Association sues, claiming that they are being discriminated against by the law. There is a claim of Equal Protection, a claim under the Commerce Clause, and a claim that the United States already has laws dealing with Shark fins, and that those those laws should take precedence over California’s law.

Is there any merit to the claims? Is it racist to outlaw Shark fins? Does the law interfere with Interstate Commerce? Most of all, does the Federal law take supremacy over the States law banning shark fins?

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The Saturday Podcast – Inadvertent DNA


DNA022415-800x500In Maryland, the High Court rules that a man who sweated on a chair and was convicted of rape based on that DNA sample, which he declined to give voluntarily. Does this mean that we have to wear clean suits everywhere from now on? The two conditions the Court says are necessary to satisfy the 4th Amendment. What lessons are there for us based on the idea that inadvertently shed DNA is now open game for Law Enforcement?

Supreme Court Rules On Warrantless Searches

I wrote about this case previously so you will see my original post below (including my inaccurate predictions.. we don’t hide our mistakes). The case involved a situation where one resident of an apartment objected to a police search but the other consented (or is alleged to have consented) to it.

The court in this matter ruled 6-3 that the police were justified in the warrantless search, a ruling which leaves me unsettled (though this is not the disaster some have positioned it as).

As noted in the posting below, it has been established that an adult resident of a home/apartment/etc can give consent for a search and that search is valid even against those not present. Read the rest of this entry

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