Thursday, October 4, 2007

On the Docket to See Case Dealing with Scope of Presidential Power

On Wednesday, October 10th On the Docket will be taking Georgetown undergraduates down to see Medellin v. Texas. Details of the case are as follows:

In the Case Concerning Avena and Other Mexican Nationals (Mex. v. U.S.), I.C.J. No. 128 (judgment of Mar. 31, 2004), the International Court of Justice determined that 51 named Mexican nationals, including petitioner, were entitled to receive review and reconsideration of their convictions and sentences through the judicial process in the United States. On February 28, 2005, President George W. Bush determined that the United States would comply with its international obligation to give effect to the judgment by giving those 51 individuals review and reconsideration in the state courts. However, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals held that the President’s determination exceeded his powers, and it refused to give effect to the Avena judgment or the President’s determination. This case presents the following questions:

1. Did the President of the United States act within his constitutional and statutory foreign affairs authority when he determined that the states must comply with the United States’ treaty obligation to give effect to the Avena judgment in the cases of the 51 Mexican nationals named in the judgment?

2. Are state courts bound by the Constitution to honor the undisputed international obligation of the United States, under treaties duly ratified by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate, to give effect to the Avena judgment in the cases that the judgment addressed?

We will meet at the GUTS bus stop in front of Leo's at 6am and be back on campus by 12 noon. Breakfast will be provided for those who come to the case. Sign up now by emailing!

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