When the stories that lead our daily news involve momentous constitutional questions, present-minded journalists and busy citizens cannot always see the stakes clearly. In The Constitution Today, Akhil Reed Amar, America's preeminent constitutional scholar, considers the biggest and most bitterly contested debates of the last two decades--from gun control to gay marriage, affirmative action to criminal procedure, presidential dynasties to congressional dysfunction, Bill Clinton's impeachment to Obamacare. He shows how the Constitution's text, history, and structure are a crucial repository of collective wisdom, providing specific rules and grand themes relevant to every organ of the American body politic.
Leading readers through the constitutional questions at stake in each episode while outlining his abiding views regarding the direction constitutional law must go, Amar offers an essential guide for anyone seeking to understand America's Constitution and its relevance today.
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About the Author
Mike Chamberlain is an actor and voice-over performer, as well as an AudioFile Earphones Award-winning audiobook narrator. Along with animation and video game characters, Mike performs narration and voices promos for television. He lives with his wife and daughter in Southern California.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Constitution on Deadline 1
Part I Modern Branches
1 The Presidency: A Return to Dynasty? 23
2 The Vice Presidency: Nothing, but Maybe Everything 49
3 The Congress: How to Fix a Broken Branch 85
4 The Judiciary: Who Judges the Judges? 111
Part II Culture Wars
5 Criminal Procedure: From O. J. to DNA 155
6 Citizens Dis-United: Race, Guns, Gays, and More 217
7 Constitutional Anniversaries: Remembering to Remember 255
Part III Presidential Dramas
8 Bill Clinton's Drama: His Partisan Impeachment 273
9 George W. Bush's Drama: His Un-Popular Election 327
10 Barack Obama's Drama: His Signature Statute 359
Conclusion: Just, in Time 399
Post-Election Postscript 411