American Constitution Society

American Constitution Society The leading progressive legal organization promoting the U.S. Constitution and the values it expresses: individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, access to justice and democracy.
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Address: 1899 L St. NW, Suite 200 | Washington, DC 20036 The American Constitution Society is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Mission: ACS believes that the Constitution is “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” We interpret the Constitution based on its text and against the backdrop of history and lived experience. Through a diverse nationwide network of progressive lawyers, law students, judges, scholars, and many others, we work to uphold the Constitution in the 21st Century by ensuring that law is a force for protecting our democracy and the public interest and for improving people’s lives. Our Vision: The American Constitution Society realizes the promises of the U.S. Constitution by building and leading a diverse legal community that dedicates itself to advancing and defending democracy, justice, equality, and liberty; to securing a government that serves the public interest; and to guarding against the abuse of law and the concentration of power.

Mission: The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS) promotes the vitality of the U.S. Constitution and the fundamental values it expresses: individual rights and liberties, genuine equality, access to justice, democracy and the rule of law. These abiding principles are reflected in the vision of the Constitution’s framers and the wisdom of forward-looking leaders who have shaped our law throughout American history. As a result of their efforts, the Constitution has retained its authority and relevance for each new generation. In recent years, an activist conservative legal movement has gained influence – eroding these enduring values and presenting the law as a series of sterile abstractions. This new orthodoxy, which threatens to dominate our courts and our laws, does a grave injustice to the American vision. The American Constitution Society embraces the progress our nation has made toward full embodiment of the Constitution’s core values. ACS believes that law can and should be a force for improving the lives of all people. We are revitalizing and transforming legal and policy debates in classrooms, courtrooms, legislatures and the media, and we are building a diverse and dynamic network of progressives committed to justice. Through these efforts, ACS will ensure that the institutions of American law reflect the highest values of our nation and serve the needs of its people.

Operating as usual

Honored to be featured alongside other leaders in the progressive movement for our work to diversify the federal bench. ...
01/15/2021
These Progressives Helped Keep Hope Alive in 2020—and Prepare Us for 2021

Honored to be featured alongside other leaders in the progressive movement for our work to diversify the federal bench. ACS Georgia Board of Advisors member Stacey Abrams & Fordham Law
School Faculty Advisor Zephyr Teachout are doing incredible work!

The Nation’s annual honor roll recognizes progressive activists and leaders who helped keep hope alive and set the groundwork for transformational change in 2021.

The unfolding violence of Jan 6 was described as treason, insurrection, and sedition. Legally, what do these terms mean?...
01/08/2021
Insurrection at the Capitol: Where Do We go From Here

The unfolding violence of Jan 6 was described as treason, insurrection, and sedition. Legally, what do these terms mean? What criminal penalties flow from them? Join us TODAY at 3 p.m. ET to learn more.

Featuring:
Kami Chavis, Professor of Law and Director of the Criminal Justice Program, Wake Forest University School of Law
Stephen Vladeck, Charles Alan Wright Chair in Federal Courts, University of Texas School of Law

https://getinvolved.acslaw.org/component/events/event/765

Egged on by President Trump's refusal to accept electoral defeat, rioters breached the Capitol building on January 6th and interrupted the

01/07/2021
01/06/2021
01/04/2021
If you haven't already, please contribute to our Year End Campaign. https://getinvolved.acslaw.org/donate
12/31/2020
Donate

If you haven't already, please contribute to our Year End Campaign. https://getinvolved.acslaw.org/donate

ACS is a nonpartisan, nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational organization. Gifts are tax-deductible for federal income tax purposes to the full extent provided by law.

Today is the last day to sign-up to send postcards to newly-eligible, young Georgia voters! Help them know that their vo...
12/17/2020
Sign-Up for Postcards to Send to Georgia!

Today is the last day to sign-up to send postcards to newly-eligible, young Georgia voters! Help them know that their votes count! Get involved in this non-partisan effort.

Young people need a voice in Georgia's runoff races for U.S. Senate. Help us turn out young voters by sending hand-written postcards to recent high school graduates. Young people in Georgia can register and vote in the runoff if they will be 18 by January 5, 2021. Your messages will let them know th...

“The fight for our democracy continues. If we are to truly vanquish the threat of another Bush v. Gore, it will take per...
12/16/2020
Reflections on the 20th Anniversary of Bush v. Gore and Other Near Misses

“The fight for our democracy continues. If we are to truly vanquish the threat of another Bush v. Gore, it will take persistent and coordinated action from all of us,” writes ACS President Russ Feingold

Yesterday, the Electoral College met and cast their ballots for President, once and for all settling the 2020 election and allowing the country to look forward to the swearing-in of President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris on...

“Hours after Joseph R. Biden Jr. was projected as the winner of the presidential election …  [ACS President Russ Feingol...
12/14/2020
Progressive Groups Urge Biden to Move Quickly on Diverse Slate of Judges

“Hours after Joseph R. Biden Jr. was projected as the winner of the presidential election … [ACS President Russ Feingold] … delivered the names of scores of carefully screened candidates for federal judicial posts to top Biden transition officials.”

The president-elect faces pressure to install a diverse group of progressives in the courts, but the prospect of a Republican-controlled Senate looms as an obstacle.

"I can no longer stay silent...  if he is executed, I will carry his death on my conscience for the rest of my own life....
12/08/2020
I served on Brandon Bernard's jury, and I believe his death sentence is wrong | ACS

"I can no longer stay silent... if he is executed, I will carry his death on my conscience for the rest of my own life."

Ahead of Brandon Bernard’s scheduled execution this Thursday, a new piece from juror Gary McClung Jr. on our blog:

Brandon Bernard's death sentence haunts me. Now that Mr. Bernard has been scheduled for execution on December 10, I feel like my nightmare is turning into reality. My only hope is that President

Officials in the state say they will not help the president with a ploy to overturn Joe Biden’s victory
12/07/2020
Georgia governor rebuffs Trump attempt to overturn vote

Officials in the state say they will not help the president with a ploy to overturn Joe Biden’s victory

Officials in the state say they will not help the president with a ploy to overturn Joe Biden’s victory.

We sounded the call this election season. ACS members answered… and then some. More than 500 members volunteered this el...
12/07/2020
ACS Virtual Holiday Celebration 2020 | ACS

We sounded the call this election season. ACS members answered… and then some. More than 500 members volunteered this election season, working as poll workers and voter advocates to keep our elections safe, fair, and accessible for all voters. Celebrate our amazing network at our Holiday Celebration this WEDNESDAY, Dec 9 at 7 p.m. ET. Register now!
https://www.acslaw.org/event/acs-virtual-holiday-celebration-2020/

Please join us for a virtual holiday party on December 9th at 7:00 p.m. ET While we wish we could celebrate with you in person, we are delighted to celebrate with you online. Join us for a holiday cel

Register now for our Holiday Celebration on Wednesday, Dec 9 at 7 p.m. ET! Salute our amazing members who volunteered to...
12/04/2020
ACS Virtual Holiday Celebration 2020 | ACS

Register now for our Holiday Celebration on Wednesday, Dec 9 at 7 p.m. ET! Salute our amazing members who volunteered to make this year's elections safe, fair, and accessible for all voters.

Please join us for a virtual holiday party on December 9th at 7:00 p.m. ET While we wish we could celebrate with you in person, we are delighted to celebrate with you online. Join us for a holiday cel

Ahead of the 155th ratification anniversary of the 13th Amendment, Brence Pernell writes on our blog: “Congress’s repara...
12/03/2020
Congress Legislated Under the Thirteenth Amendment Long Ago to Address Slavery's Harms. It Should Do So Again. | ACS

Ahead of the 155th ratification anniversary of the 13th Amendment, Brence Pernell writes on our blog: “Congress’s reparative power under the Thirteenth Amendment is essentially untapped.”

https://www.acslaw.org/expertforum/congress-legislated-under-the-thirteenth-amendment-long-ago-to-address-slaverys-harms-it-should-do-so-again/

December 6 marks the 155th ratification anniversary of the U.S. Constitution's Thirteenth Amendment outlawing slavery and "involuntary servitude." One of three Reconstruction Amendments

We’re so grateful for your support on #GivingTuesday! Thank you for investing in our vital work for the future.
12/02/2020

We’re so grateful for your support on #GivingTuesday! Thank you for investing in our vital work for the future.

Support us on #GivingTuesday tomorrow so we can continue doing our important work in 2021! https://buff.ly/2zei58G
11/30/2020

Support us on #GivingTuesday tomorrow so we can continue doing our important work in 2021! https://buff.ly/2zei58G

You don’t want to miss our death penalty event TODAY at 1:30 p.m. ET! Tune in to learn more about the future of capital ...
11/19/2020
Is the End in Sight? The Questionable Future of Capital Punishment in America | ACS

You don’t want to miss our death penalty event TODAY at 1:30 p.m. ET! Tune in to learn more about the future of capital punishment in America. Register here https://www.acslaw.org/event/is-the-end-in-sight-the-questionable-future-of-capital-punishment-in-america/

For the first time in our nation's history, half of all states in the country have either outright banned or declared moratoria on capital punishment. Even in states that maintain the death penal

The explosion in spending on television attack advertisements in state supreme court elections accelerated by the Citize...
11/18/2020
Skewed Justice | ACS

The explosion in spending on television attack advertisements in state supreme court elections accelerated by the Citizens United decision has made courts less likely to rule in favor of defendants in criminal appeals.

Our new report with a team of independent researchers from Emory University School of Law shows how ‘soft on crime’ ads can lead to harsher outcomes in the criminal justice system: https://www.acslaw.org/analysis/reports/skewed-justice/

The explosion in spending on television attack advertisements in state supreme court elections accelerated by the Citizens United decision has made courts less likely to rule in favor of defendants in

"This was not actually a particularly close election. It looked close initially only because of the order in which some ...
11/13/2020
Could Trump Really Hold On? Why Experts Aren’t Worried

"This was not actually a particularly close election. It looked close initially only because of the order in which some states counted ballots,” explains ACS University of Kentucky Faculty Advisor Joshua A. Douglas

https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/11/12/election-law-experts-roundup-436139

Legal scholars agree: At this point, the outcome of the 2020 election is no longer on the line … though the future of our democracy might be.

Congratulations to Ronald Klain, in at the beginning at ACS, a former board member and current member of our Board of Ad...
11/12/2020

Congratulations to Ronald Klain, in at the beginning at
ACS, a former board member and current member of our Board of Advisors, on being named White House Chief of Staff for President-elect Joe Biden.

Election officials in dozens of states representing both political parties said that there was no evidence that fraud or...
11/11/2020
The Times Called Officials in Every State: No Evidence of Voter Fraud

Election officials in dozens of states representing both political parties said that there was no evidence that fraud or other irregularities played a role in the outcome of the presidential race https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/10/us/politics/voting-fraud.html

The president and his allies have baselessly claimed that rampant voter fraud stole victory from him. Officials contacted by The Times said that there were no irregularities that affected the outcome.

“If the Court invalidates the law, the result will be catastrophic: Without the federal funding that supports the law’s ...
11/10/2020
The Fallout of a SCOTUS Health-Care Decision Could Be Quick, Devastating, and Irreversible

“If the Court invalidates the law, the result will be catastrophic: Without the federal funding that supports the law’s coverage expansions, millions of Americans will quickly lose their health insurance” explains ACS Member Nicholas Bagley

Millions of Americans could lose their insurance—and neither Joe Biden nor the states will be in a good position to do much about it.

"Attorney General William P. Barr, wading into President Trump’s unfounded accusations of widespread election irregulari...
11/10/2020

"Attorney General William P. Barr, wading into President Trump’s unfounded accusations of widespread election irregularities, told federal prosecutors on Monday that they were allowed to investigate 'specific allegations' of voter fraud before the results of the presidential race are certified."

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/09/us/politics/barr-elections.html

McConnell’s silence—and Graham’s and others’ lies about non-existent election fraud—are harming democratic norms, argues...
11/09/2020
Opinion: GOP leaders, demand that Trump stop his outrageous assault on America's vote now

McConnell’s silence—and Graham’s and others’ lies about non-existent election fraud—are harming democratic norms, argues ACS University of Kentucky Rosenberg College of Law Faculty Advisor Joshua Douglas https://www.cnn.com/2020/11/06/opinions/gop-leaders-condemn-trump-baseless-fraud-claims-douglas/index.html

Joshua Douglas writes Trump's baseless claims of voter fraud and that the election is being stolen from him, as his ability to reach 270 electoral votes decreases, is dangerous and Republican leaders need to openly condemn Trump's claims fully.

“Today, we are uniting to urge candidates and voters to be patient and trust the process — no matter how long it takes,”...
11/05/2020
Opinion: Russ Feingold and Reid Ribble say the electoral process is working, keep counting the votes

“Today, we are uniting to urge candidates and voters to be patient and trust the process — no matter how long it takes,” write ACS President Russ Feingold and Republican Reid Ribble https://www.jsonline.com/story/news/solutions/2020/11/05/election-over-wisconsin-stay-calm-let-count-carry/6172892002/

Take it from us, a Democrat and a Republican who have run for office many times in Wisconsin: The electoral process is working.

Leading scholars of the Constitution and the Law of Democracy have signed onto a letter emphasizing the importance of co...
11/05/2020
Legal Scholars on the Importance of Counting Every Vote | ACS

Leading scholars of the Constitution and the Law of Democracy have signed onto a letter emphasizing the importance of counting every vote https://www.acslaw.org/expertforum/legal-scholars-on-the-importance-of-counting-every-vote/

American history is replete with presidential elections that were not decided on Election Day. From the very first presidential election in 1788 through the 2016 election, having a sufficiently comple

11/03/2020
“On The Issues with Michele Goodwin”

Today is Election Day! ACS President Russ Feingold joined Comedian and Actor Sandra Bernhard and Comedian and Activist Lizz Winstead on Ms. magazine’s “On The Issues with Michele Goodwin” podcast to answer some of your pressing voting questions—and have a bit of fun. Whether you’re voting in person or dropping off your ballot, let us keep you company while you do your civic duty! https://msmagazine.com/podcast/10-take-us-with-you-on-election-day/

"The separation of Central American families carried out by the Trump Administration is just the latest version of cruel...
11/03/2020
An American History of Separating Families | ACS

"The separation of Central American families carried out by the Trump Administration is just the latest version of cruel family separation practices rooted in America’s soil" says Anita Sinha in the latest ACS Expert Forum https://www.acslaw.org/expertforum/an-american-history-of-separating-families/

On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary released a report with a title that pulls no punches: "The Trump Administration's Family Separation Policy: Trauma,

TOMORROW: ACS President Russ Feingold joins Comedian and Actor Sandra Bernhard and Comedian and Activist Lizz Winstead o...
11/02/2020

TOMORROW: ACS President Russ Feingold joins Comedian and Actor Sandra Bernhard and Comedian and Activist Lizz Winstead on Ms. magazine’s “On The Issues with Michele Goodwin” podcast for a very special Election Day episode! We’re facing the most important elections of our lifetimes, and now is the time to make your voice heard—and we'll keep you company while you vote or drop off your ballot. The episode will be available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and MsMagazine.com first thing tomorrow morning. Hope you’ll tune in!

“Now more than ever, it is incumbent upon voters to take the down-ballot races seriously and educate themselves about th...
10/29/2020
Your down-ballot vote can protect voting rights where the Supreme Court won’t

“Now more than ever, it is incumbent upon voters to take the down-ballot races seriously and educate themselves about the views of state and local candidates on election law,” argues ACS University of Alabama School of Law Faculty Advisor Joyce Vance in a new column
https://www.msnbc.com/opinion/supreme-court-will-not-protect-our-voting-rights-here-s-n1245120

The Constitution requires federal courts to step in and ensure voting rights during the pandemic. But the Supreme Court is doing the opposite.

"I wake up every day energized, because I know my clients are suffering, and if I don’t fight for their rights, they may...
10/28/2020

"I wake up every day energized, because I know my clients are suffering, and if I don’t fight for their rights, they may not find anyone willing to do it." Read more from our ACS Lawyer of the Month Chris Edmunds: https://buff.ly/2WqSDEn

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Our Vision: The American Constitution Society realizes the promises of the U.S. Constitution by building and leading a diverse legal community that dedicates itself to advancing and defending democracy, justice, equality, and liberty; to securing a government that serves the public interest; and to guarding against the abuse of law and the concentration of power.

Our Mission: ACS believes that the Constitution is “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” We interpret the Constitution based on its text and against the backdrop of history and lived experience. Through a diverse nationwide network of progressive lawyers, law students, judges, scholars and many others, we work to uphold the Constitution in the 21st Century by ensuring that law is a force for protecting our democracy and the public interest and for improving people’s lives.

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When one does not answer a census a volunteer shows up at your door to obtain information . Those volunteers who are non-partisan must individually approach those who are disabled , poverty stricken or on the streets . They would have to know 1. How to prove unregistered voters and their identities as required on each mail in form ( one can xerox their drivers license or birth certificate etc, ) 2. Volunteers who are non- partisan must be able to educate these potential new voters as to the candidates and their issues. The final question : who and how would we pick someone who is honest and non-partisan ?
This is floating around and scaring many people. We need to confirm or deny this tidbit: https://www.facebook.com/100006198312025/videos/2562778820605370/?t=0
What questions am I required to answer on the 2020 Census according to the Constitution?
Congratulations on being one of the largest anti-American and anti-Constitution groups in the country.
PLEASE HELP STOP THE INJUSTICE I need the help of as many people as will help me! Facebook in its infinite wisdom has blocked me for 30 days! For sharing a Christian post. This is censorship of Christians. They said I post something that went against their policy (yes because I'm a Christian). I can’t post to any groups! This is wrong!!!! Religious Freedom is still the law in AMERICA! Just not on FACEBOOK I GUESS! Please share my post! I want to show FACEBOOK that they can’t win! If I was a Moslim they would be afraid to do this! Thanks for all your help! Hank Spooner
I just want to thank ACS for a very informative webinar on impeachment today. The expert insight was very informative, going well beyond the political sound bites. I want to share the replay info as soon it's available.
just a bunch of libtard lawyers--ideologues! hate mongers! we will fight if it comes to that. bet on it. lawyers suck--esp liberal lawyers
Any group who would include that nasty Karlan woman should be ashamed of itself. If she is typical of your membership, you are a waste of space with no credibility.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW)'s Noah Bookbinder on the president's call with Ukraine's president Zelensky: "The memorandum, which the White House released Wednesday morning, is far worse than we could have imagined. It demonstrates that Mr. Trump sought multiple favors from a foreign leader for his personal political gain and in doing so violated his solemn oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution."
I suggest that you read your own name...American CONSITUTION Society... the Constitution gives no "rights" that you have suggested. FARCE.