Michael W. McConnell

Richard and Frances Mallery Professor, Director of the Constitutional Law Center, Stanford Law School

February 8, 2023 — 4:10 PM
The Bancroft Hotel — 2680 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704

Add to Google Calendar 02/08/2023 4:10 PM 02/08/2023 6:00 PM America/Los_Angeles Constructing a Republican Executive

About this lecture As the delegates to the Constitutional Convention gathered in Philadelphia in 1789, there was no experience, anywhere in the world, of a successful republican executive over an extensive nation — one with sufficient authority and independence to … Continued

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About this lecture

As the delegates to the Constitutional Convention gathered in Philadelphia in 1789, there was no experience, anywhere in the world, of a successful republican executive over an extensive nation — one with sufficient authority and independence to make things work on a national scale, but without the risk of becoming a monarch. This lecture will show how the delegates, and especially the Committee of Detail, went about constructing such an executive, and what it means for separation-of-powers law today.

 

About Michael W. McConnell

Michael W. McConnell is the Richard & Frances Mallery Professor and Director of the Constitutional Law Center at Stanford Law School, and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution. From 2002 to 2009, he served as a Circuit Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. He was nominated by President George W. Bush, a Republican, and confirmed by a Democratic Senate by unanimous consent. McConnell has previously held chaired professorships at the University of Chicago and the University of Utah, and visiting professorships at Harvard and NYU. He teaches courses on constitutional law, constitutional history, First Amendment, executive power, and interpretive theory. He has published widely in the fields of constitutional law and theory, especially church and state, equal protection, and separation of powers. 

His book, The President Who Would Not Be King: Executive Power Under the Constitution, was published by Princeton University Press in late 2020. It won Georgetown University’s Thomas M. Cooley Award for outstanding books in constitutional law, and was a finalist for the George Washington Book Award in American legal history. His upcoming book Agreeing to Disagree: How the Establishment Clause Protects Religious Diversity and Freedom of Conscience, co-authored with Nathan Chapman, will be published by Oxford University Press in early 2023.

McConnell has argued sixteen cases in the United States Supreme Court, most recently in Carney v. Adams, a successful defense of a provision of the Delaware Constitution requiring political balance on that state’s courts. McConnell served as law clerk to Supreme Court Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. and D.C. Circuit Chief Judge J. Skelly Wright. He has been Assistant General Counsel of the Office of Management; Budget, Assistant to the Solicitor General of the Department of Justice, and a member of the President’s Intelligence Oversight Board. He is Senior of Counsel to the law firm Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich & Rosati, and co-chair of the Facebook Oversight Board.

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