Author Archives: Nan Hunter

Health reform hits abortion wall

With congressional committees having entered the phase of proposing specific legislative language for health reform, an old problem has resurfaced: health reform and abortion rights are on a collision course.   I refer to it as an old problem because … Continue reading

Posted in Feminism and Politics, Reproductive Rights | Comments Off

A Global First: Openly Gay Appointee to a Nation’s Highest Court

In a genuinely pathbreaking act, South African President Mothlanthe has appointed Edwin Cameron, a justice on the Supreme Court of Appeal, as a judge of the Constitutional Court, the highest court in South Africa. Judge Cameron becomes the first openly … Continue reading

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Tonight on PBS – Emma Coleman Jordan deconstructs the bail outs

Tonight on Bill Moyers Journal, at 9 pm ET, my colleague Emma Coleman Jordan will be featured in a segment on “deconstructing the bailout.”   Emma is a pre-eminent scholar on the intersection of law with economic and class issues, … Continue reading

Posted in Feminists in Academia, Women and Economics | Comments Off

Civil rights transition memos: study the contrasts

The Obama transition project is publishing on its  web page a list of the groups with whom transition teams are meeting and the documents furnished to them by those groups. The page has only a few listings now, but should … Continue reading

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Early morning after: ballot initiatives and progressive House candidates

Since you write the blog you want to read, I decided to concentrate last night on the ballot initiatives and down ballot races that I thought progressives would be most interested in.   What strikes me the morning after is … Continue reading

Posted in Feminism and Politics, LGBT Rights, Race and Racism, Reproductive Rights | Comments Off

Dems play both sides of abortion politics in congressional races

Two contrasting views of the Democratic Party’s use of the abortion issue in this year’s election have emerged in recent press reports.   When one reads them together, a fascinating picture emerges of how the Dems are deploying and funding … Continue reading

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Brava to ACLU’s terrific new president

This weekend the ACLU elected my wonderful former colleague, Brooklyn Law School Professor Susan Herman, as its new president.   There are many things to love about Susan: her integrity, her intelligence and her wisdom, among others.   Susan’s recent … Continue reading

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Connecticut equalizes marriage law

The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled today that the state must allow same-sex couples to marry.   In yet another decision with a one-vote margin,* this time 4 to 3, the court ruled in Kerrigan v Commissioner of Public Health that … Continue reading

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Shifting demographics of abortion and the political fall-out

An important new report from the Alan Guttmacher Institute analyzes trends in abortions from 1974 to 2004, a time frame that dramatically highlights generational shifts among American women. The key findings: * The overall rate of abortions is at its … Continue reading

Posted in Reproductive Rights | Comments Off

Federal judge rules that refusal to hire based on gender identity is sex discrimination

Today, in the first ever victory directly on this point, the ACLU won a federal court decision holding that discrimination against a transgender person constitutes per se discrimination based on sex in violation of Title VII. In Schroer_v_Billington, Judge James … Continue reading

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Snark attacks on Palin feed Palin-mania

Republicans have done a brilliant job of flipping the dynamics of this campaign. First, they took the Dems by surprise with their anointment of Sarah Palin as the VP candidate. Now they seize every opportunity, no matter how ridiculous, to … Continue reading

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The oval office marriage

Like pretty much everyone else, I know almost nothing about Sarah Palin. As an Obama supporter, I’m generally happy about McCain choosing her, since the qualifications gap is gargantuan. Ultimately, I don’t think that this strategy will work to bring … Continue reading

Posted in Feminism and Politics, Sexism in the Media | Comments Off

Supreme Court of Mexico expected to rule today on new abortion law

The NY Times has reported that the Supreme Court of Mexico is scheduled to vote today on whether to invalidate a Mexico City law that allows unrestricted abortions in the first trimester of pregnancy. During the court’s deliberations, which apparently … Continue reading

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Two important reports from American Psychological Assn

The APA convention meeting this week in Boston is hearing two internal reports with important public policy dimensions. The report of the Task Force on Mental Health and Abortion concludes that no evidence supports the claim that an induced abortion … Continue reading

Posted in LGBT Rights, Women's Health | Comments Off

Trial courts hear CA, NY marriage equality battles

UPDATE: Judge dismisses challenge to wording of Prop 8. Both title and arguments included on the ballot will remain as proposed by the Secretary of State. [Link to decision] A California trial court judge is likely to rule today in … Continue reading

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Pressure on servicewomen not to report assault

Rep. Louise Slaughter: DoD Shirks Congressional Oversight of Sexual Assault in the Military Last Thursday, I gave testimony on sexual assault in the military at a House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee oversight hearing. Kaye Whitley, director of the Department’s … Continue reading

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In three months, these laws will change (or not)

Election Day is three months from today. Despite the fact that one can hardly escape the relentless onslaught of horse race journalism about candidates, there is almost total radio silence about the laws that voters will adopt or reject on … Continue reading

Posted in Feminism and Politics, Guest Blogger, LGBT Rights, Reproductive Rights | Comments Off

Professor Obama on sexuality, gender and health

Must reading for all law profs – the NY Times has published eight of the exams (scroll to bottom of link) given by Barack Obama while he was teaching at the University of Chicago Law School, together with two sample … Continue reading

Posted in Law Teaching, LGBT Rights, Reproductive Rights | Comments Off