Federalism on Trial: State Attorneys General and National by Paul Nolette

By Paul Nolette

"It is without doubt one of the satisfied incidents of the federal system," Justice Louis Brandeis wrote in 1932, "that a unmarried brave country might, if its electorate decide upon, function a laboratory, and check out novel social and fiscal experiments with no chance to the remainder of the country." it's one of many beneficial properties of federalism in our day, Paul Nolette counters, that those "laboratories of democracy," below the suggestions of country legal professionals basic, are extra apt to be dictating nationwide coverage than carrying out contained experiments. In Federalism on Trial, Nolette provides the 1st broadscale exam of the more and more nationalized political activism of kingdom legal professionals common. concentrating on coordinated country litigation as a kind of nationwide policymaking, his booklet demanding situations universal assumptions in regards to the modern nature of yank federalism.

within the tobacco litigation of the Nineties, a couple of kingdom legal professionals basic controlled to reshape one in every of America's greatest industries—all with no the involvement of Congress or the administrative department. this example of prosecution as a sort of rules is only one case between many within the greater tale of yank country improvement. Federalism on Trial indicates how new social coverage regimes of the Sixties and 1970s—adopting nationwide pursuits corresponding to cleanser air, wider entry to healthiness care, and larger patron protections—promoted either "adversarial legalism" and new kinds of "cooperative federalism" that better the powers and chances open to kingdom lawyers common. Nolette lines this trend—as AGs took benefit of those new situations and opportunities—through case stories concerning drug pricing, environmental coverage, and overall healthiness care reform.

The result's the 1st complete account—far-reaching and finely detailed—of how, instead of checking nationwide energy or developing efficient discussion among federal and country policymakers, the federalism exercised via nation lawyers basic usually complicates nationwide regulatory regimes and seeks either better coverage centralization and a extra vast succeed in of the yank regulatory state.

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