Too Hot to Handle??

Fridays tend to be a slow blog-traffic day so I'm going to use my post today to promo the two “hot topic” panels I’ll be doing at the upcoming Association of American Law Schools annual conference just after new year’s. I’ll be doing a panel on the Second Amendment issue in the D.C. gun case. That topic is so “hot” that the conference organizers have decided to schedule it for 8:30 a.m. on a Saturday. More about that one tomorrow. The other hot topic is . . . wait for it . . . abortion. I guess it’s always hot. Anyway, here’s the info:

HOT TOPIC panel on "Reproductive Justice after Carhart"

Friday, January 4, 2008

10:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Petit Trianon, 3rd floor, New York Hilton

Moderators: Pamela S. Karlan, Stanford Law School
Jack M. Balkin, Yale Law School

Panelists: Michael C. Dorf, Columbia University School of Law
Reva B. Siegel, Yale Law School
Kenji Yoshino, Yale Law School
Angela P. Harris, University of California, Berkeley School of Law

This roundtable will discuss Gonzales v. Carhart, the Supreme Court's 2007 decision upholding the federal Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act. Panelists will focus on the ways that Carhart has emerged from and is reshaping debate over questions of reproductive justice in popular movements, the academy, state legislatures, and the courts.

Carhart suggests a new understanding of the state' s interest in regulating abortion, as well as a new understanding of the abortion right itself. Discussion will explore how the abortion right might be grounded in principles of sexual freedom and gender equality. Drawing on examples of abortion regulation now in state legislatures, the roundtable will examine the constituent elements of the government's interest in regulating abortion, including the government's asserted interest in protecting women from psychological harms associated with the abortion decision and the equities of imposing more extensive and value-laden informed consent requirements, as many states are now contemplating. The group will also discuss changes in the structure of abortion-related litigation, such as the distinction between as-applied and facial attacks on abortion regulations, especially as this bears on the requirement of a health exception.

Posted by Mike Dorf