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Federalizing Criminal Law: The Hidden Costs of Usurping State Jurisdiction

For years after the founding of the United States, federal crimes were limited to a few offenses against the federal government itself.  Since the 1970's Congress has passed hundreds of statutes criminalizing activity traditionally controlled by the states.  Judge Bybee and Professor Duke will debate the constitutional and policy justifications for a state prerogative in criminal law.

Judge Jay Bybee has served on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals since 2003.  His prior government service includes several years in the Department of Justice.  Judge Bybee worked in the Office of Legal Policy and the Civil Division during Reagan's presidency, served as Associate Counsel to the President in the George H.W. Bush White House, and returned to the Office of Legal Policy as Assistant Attorney General in the George W. Bush administration.  He taught for seven years at the Paul M. Hebert Law Center of Louisiana State University, and was on the founding faculty of the Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada.  Judge Bybee earned his B.A. and J.D. at Brigham Young University and clerked for Judge Donald Russell on the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Steven Duke is a Professor of Law at YLS where he teaches and writes on criminal law, criminal procedure, evidence, and drug policy.  He received his B.S. degree from Arizona State University and his J.D. from the University of Arizona, where he was editor-in-chief of the first Arizona Law Review. He served as law clerk to Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas after which he received an LL.M. degree from Yale Law School. He has submitted many briefs on criminal matters to the United States Supreme Court and has orally argued three cases in that Court. He has also briefed and argued numerous other cases in state and federal courts throughout the United States.

You can watch the debate here.