Medellin: The Aftermath

Kent Scheidegger, author of the blog Crime and Consequences, provides an interesting piece here on the impact of the Medellin v. Texas case, decided by the U.S. Supreme Court two days ago.

Despite all the wailing and gnashing of teeth over the Supreme Court’s decision in Medellin v. Texas, the holding is not all that remarkable. It has long been established that not all treaties are self-executing, and the Court held that the ones at issue here are not, based on their own language. Where adherence to a treaty is contrary to a statute, the President cannot override the statute unilaterally, but legislation is required. Far from making America a rogue nation, placement of the responsibility for treaty compliance in the political branches and not the judiciary is quite common in the world.

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