Past CBM Competition Winners



Punishing the Poor: Challenging Carceral Debt Practices Under Beaden and M.L.B.

Tyler Smoot, University of Alabama School of Law


How the House Sues.

Ben Miller-Gootnick Harvard Law School

A Hail Mary for the Administrative State: An Originalist Defense of Chevron Deference.

Rachel Scholz-Bright Georgetown University Law Center

Confirmed Judge Panel

  • Hon. Richard Franklin Boulware II, U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada
  • Hon. Edmond Chang, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Hon. Rebecca Dallet, Wisconsin Supreme Court
  • Darren Hutchinson, Raymond & Miriam Ehrlich Eminent Scholar Chair, Professor of Law, and Associate Dean for Faculty Development, University of Florida Levin College of Law; ACS Faculty Advisor
  • Leah Litman, Assistant Professor of Law, University of Michigan Law School; Member, ACS National Board of Academic Advisors
  • Kermit Roosevelt, Professor of Law, University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School; ACS Faculty Advisor
  • Richard Saenz, Lambda Legal Senior Attorney

Other Finalists

Isolation in the Free State: How Kansas Due Process Law Can Protect LGBTQ People From Solitary Confinement

Ellen Bertels University of Kansas School of Law

Nothing To Admire: The Consequences of USCIS’ 2018 Notice To Appear (NTA) Policy

Christopher Killmer Willamette University College of Law

The Curtis Flowers Saga: A Failure of Prosecutorial Accountability

Allison Lantero University of Notre Dame Law School

Cloudy With a Need for Warrants: The Unconstitutionality of the Stored Communications Act

William Lawrence Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law



Going, Gutted, Gone?: Why Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act is in Danger, and What States Can Do About It

Eric Lynch, William & Mary Law School



The President's Power to Withdraw From International Agreements: The Role of Congress and the Courts.

Ata Akiner, Georgetown University Law Center

Vote Denial and Doubt: Strategic Section 2 Litigation and Constitutional Risk Management of the Results Test

Hayden Johnson, Georgetown University Law Center


Confirmed Judge Panel

Hon. Ketanji Brown Jackson, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

Hon. Jacqueline Nguyen, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Hon. Carlton W. Reeves, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi

Victoria Rodriguez-Roldan, National LGBTQ Task Force

Kermit Roosevelt, University of Pennsylvania Law School

Brian Soucek, University of California, Davis, School of Law

Ciara Torres-Spelliscy, Stetson University College of Law


Other Finalists

Term Limits and Minority Vote Dilution: The Effects of State Term Limits on Minorities in the Political Process 

Caron Byrd, Florida State University College of Law

Equality Shall Not be Denied: Preserving Abortion in Pennsylvania Under the ERA 

Christopher Lin, Temple University School of Law

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of a Statutory Amendment: A Call for Enhanced Due Process Protection in Pre-Bond Hearing Immigration Detention 

Emily Migliore, Harvard Law School

Shedding Tiers: A New Framework for Equal Protection Jurisprudence 

Danielle Stefanucci, St. John’s University School of Law




Felony Disenfranchisement Laws: Paying and Re-paying a Debt to Society

Christina Beeler, University of Houston Law Center



Your Secret Life According to Your Honda Accord: Applying the Fourth Amendment to Automobile Infotainment Data

Natasha Harnwell-Davis, Columbia Law School

The Path to Standing: Asserting the Inherent Injury of the Data Breach

Jennifer Joslin, University of Utah, S.J. Quinney College of Law


Confirmed Judge Panel

Prof. April Dawson, North Carolina Central University School of Law

Prof. Erin Delaney, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Hon. David Lillehaug, Minnesota Supreme Court

Hon. Beverly B. Martin, US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Hon. Mary Rowland, US District Court for Northern District of Illinois

Prof. Ciara Torres-Spelliscy, Stetson University College of Law


Other Finalists

The Ad Hoc Federal Crime of Terrorism: Why Congress Needs to Amend the Statute to Properly Address Domestic Extremism.

Nathan Carpenter, St. John’s University School of Law

Nowhere to Run, Nowhere to Hide: Applying the Fourth Amendment to Connected Cars in the Internet-of-Things Era.

Gregory Brown, Jr., St. John’s University School of Law

Achieving Ake: Defendants Deserve the Constitutional Right to Independent Mental Health Professionals.

Alexandra Marinucci, University of Pittsburgh School of Law

Can You Hear Me Now: Stingray Cell Tower Mimes Under Constitutional Scrutiny.

Triston O’Savio, Penn State’s Dickinson Law




Juvenile Miranda Waivers and Wrongful Convictions

Hana Sahdev, Boston College Law School



Not Your Mouthpiece: Abortion, Ideology, and Compelled Speech in Physician-Patient Relationships

Sarah Kramer, University of Pennsylvania Law School


Domestic Violence in Cyberspace: The Legal Implications of Revenge Pornography & the Need for Criminalization

Rosemarie Aleman, University of North Carolina School of Law




The Legal Story of Guantanamo North

Rylee Sommers-Flanagan, Stanford Law School



The Ballot-Box, the Jury-Box, and the Cartridge-Box

Nicholas Bernard, Georgetown University Law Center

Potential Citizens’ Rights: The Case for Permanent Resident Voting

David Howard, University of Texas School of Law


Other Finalists

The Constitutionality of Wisconsin’s Act 10

Scott Budow, Fordham University School of Law


Stemming the Hobby Lobby Tidal Wave: Why RFRA Challenges to Obama’s Executive Order Prohibiting Federal Contractors from Discriminating Against LGBT Employees Will Not Succeed

Kayla Higgins, IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law


Excluding Non-Federally Recognized Tribal Members from Obtaining Eagle Parts Under 50 C.F.R. §22.22 Violates Post-Burwell RFRA

Michael Novotny, Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law


Breaking Down Equal Protection’s Wall of Intent: How Disparate Impact and Race-Consciousness Embrace the Spirit of Equal Protection & How the Court’s Antiquated Understanding of Discrimination and the Colorblind Approach Provide Unequal Protection

Joshua Silberman, Barry University School of Law






NSA Surveillance Programs and the First Amendment

Kelsey Skaggs, Harvard Law School




Sliding the Scale to Equality: What the Supreme Court Really Meant in United States v. Windsor

Brian Jordan, The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law


Riley's Promise: A New Path for Bringing Fourth Amendment Protection to Cell Phone Location Data

Ashwin Shandilya, University of Virginia School of Law


Other Finalists


The Right to Education for Unaccompanied Minors 

Jeanette Acosta, University of California Hastings College of the Law


Biting the Bullet: Urging Consensus in Recognizing the Constitutionality of Domestic Violence Gun Regulation after Heller

Chidera Anyanwu, George Washington University Law School


Electronic Strip Searches at the Border: Critiquing the Approaches of the United States and United Kingdom

Tim Cochrane, University of Pennsylvania Law School


No Treatment for Hidden Conditions: The Urgent Need for a Consistent Legal Standard for the Objective Prong of Eighth Amendment Denial-of-Care Claims

Stacey Gray, Georgetown University Law Center




  • Judge Albert Diaz, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • Justice Debra Stephens, Washington State Supreme Court
  • Judge Jon S. Tigar, U.S District Court for the Northern District of California
  • Professor Melissa Murray, University of California Berkeley Law
  • Professor Ruthann Robson, City University of New York School of Law
  • Professor Kermit Roosevelt, University of Pennsylvania Law School





Disclosing Bribes in Disguise: Campaign Contributions as Implicit Bribes and the Impartial Enforcement of Violations 

Brian Jordan, The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law




A New Framework for Fourth Amendment Rulemaking: Proposing a Modified Equilibrium-Adjustment Paradigm

Scott Gorski, Fordham University School of Law


The Nineteenth Amendment Enforcement Power: But First, Which One Is That, Again?

Steven Kolbert, Florida State University College of Law


Other Finalists 


“You Are Obligated to Terminate This Pregnancy Immediately": The Contractual Obligations of a Surrogate to Abort her Pregnancy

Brittney Kern, Michigan State University


Transparent Failure: The Duplicative role of the State Secrets Doctrine in Criminal Prosecutions 

Josh Porte, University of Minnesota


“I Fight Authority, [But Does] Authority Always Win?” An Inquiry into Whether Transvaginal Ultrasounds Violate the Fourth Amendment’s Reasonable Search Provision. 

Janelle Wilke, Chapman University


Analyzing the Constitutionality of Florida's Involuntary Blood Draw Statute in the Wake of Missouri V. McNeely 

Francisco Zonorsa, Florida State University




  • Judge Pamela Chen (E.D.N.Y.)
  • Justice Goodwin Liu (California Supreme Court)
  • Judge Luis Felipe Restrepo (E.D. Pa.)
  • Nicole Huberfeld, Professor of Law, University of Kentucky College of Law
  • Steve Sanders, Associate Professor of Law, Indiana University Maurer School of Law
  • Franita Tolson, Betty T. Ferguson Professor of Voting Rights, Florida State University College of Law





The Voting Rights Act and the Fifteenth Amendment Standard of Review

Jeremy M. Amar Dolan, Cornell Law School




Institutional Religious Exemptions: A Balancing Approach

Leilani Fisher, Brigham Young University J. Reuben Clark Law School


Good Will Hunting: How the Hunter Doctrine Can Still Protect Minorities in the Political Process

Kerrel Murray, Stanford Law School


Other Finalists 


Revisiting the Fourth Estate: A Plea for Federal Legislative or Judicial Acknowledgement of the Reporter’s Privilege

Emily Brailey, Columbia Law School


The Inconsistent Application of Title VII’s BFOQ

Lauren Engelmyer, University of Pennsylvania Law School


Too Cruel for School: LGBT Bullying, Noncognitive Skill Development, and the Educational Rights of Students

Jason Lee, Harvard Law School


Subverting the Seventh Amendment: Multidistrict Litigation’s Marginalization of Mass Tort Victims’ Right to Trial by Jury

Cory Tischbein, University of Pennsylvania Law School




  • Judge Richard Mark Gergel (D.S.C.)
  • Judge Norma Shapiro (E.D. Pa.)
  • Judge Susie Morgan (E.D. La.)
  • Professor Kermit Roosevelt, The University of Pennsylvania Law School
  • Professor Margaret Hu, Duke University School of Law
  • Professor Kathleen Morris, Golden Gate University School of Law





How Statutes Create Rights: The Case of the National Labor Relations Act

Sam Simon, Harvard Law School




Assessing the Constitutionality of the Copyright Act’s Licensing Exemption for Religious Performances of Religious Works

Carolyn Homer, George Washington University Law School


Representation Reinforcement Redux: What an Elysian Analysis of Citizens United Reveals About the Court, Its Critics, and Political Process Theory

Evan Barret Smith, University of Pennsylvania Law School


Other Finalists 


The Content Approach and Signage Provisions: A Self-Defeating Test

Elizabeth O’Brien, St. Louis University School of Law

The Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act: Exploring New Jersey’s Solution to Anti-Gay Peer Harassment in Schools

Bulban Salim, Brooklyn Law School


The "Reasonably Comparable Evils" of Male-on-Male Sexual Harassment: Because Men Need Protection Too

Dasha Galperin, George Washington University Law School


Constructive Notice in Title IX Cases of Ineffective Athletic Accommodation

Alexis E. Bates, University of Chicago Law School




  • Judge Lynn S. Adelman (E.D. Wis.)
  • Judge Karen Schreier (D.S.D)
  • Chief Judge Susan Oki Mollway (D. Haw.)
  • Professor Kermit Roosevelt, The University of Pennsylvania Law School
  • Professor Fred Schauer, The University of Virginia School of Law
  • Professor David Franklin, DePaul University College of Law





Order in the Court: Decorum, Rambunctious Defendants, and the Right to be Present at Trial 

Sarah Podmaniczky, George Washington University Law School  




Utilizing Rule Based Bias Filtering to Standardize Reasonable Doubt and Ameliorate Cognitive Biases 

Yali Corea-Levy, Santa Clara Law 


Is Qualified Immunity an Affirmative Defense in Name Alone? Why Courts Should Shift Away From Placing the Burden to Refute Qualified Immunity on § 1983 Plaintiffs 

Elinor R. Jordan, Michigan State University College of Law





From the Shores of Tripoli to the Deserts of Iraq: Congress and the President in Offensive and Defensive Wars 

Alex Whitman, Emory University




“But a Truism”: Why ‘the People’ Have Standing Rights Under the Tenth Amendment and How Tennessee Electric Power Co. v. Tennessee Electric Authority led to Nearly Seventy-Five Years of Confusion 

Kristin Oickle, New England School of Law


America: the Country of Czars? 

Keena Patel, Georgia State University


Other Finalists


Pleading Their Case: How Ashcroft v. Iqbal Extinguishes Prisoners’ Rights 

Maureen Brocco, University of Maryland


Reasserting its Constitutional Role: Congress’s Power to Independently Terminate a Treaty 

David Wolff, Stanford University




Doninger v. Niefhoff: An Example of Public Schools' Paternalism and the Off-Campus Restriction of Students' First Amendment Rights 

Nathan Fronk, Marquette University



Standing in the Way of Cooperation: Citizen Standing and Compliance with International Environmental Agreements 

Neil Gromley, Harvard University


Imputing Sexual Intent to Minors: The Case for an Age-Based Exception 

Stephanie Holmes, University of Chicago


Other Finalists


Linking the Ethanol Boom to the Gulf State Fisheries Bust: Reinvigorating the Commerce Clause to Enable Gulf State Fishermen to Sue Midwest Corn Farmers 

Audrey Lin, Northwestern University


“Dangerous” Redefined: New Standards for Involuntary Commitment in Illinois 

Elizabeth McGuan, Northern Illinois University


Internet v. First Amendment: How to Keep the First Amendment From Abridging Free Speech 

Randy Tyler, University of Pennsylvania


Litigation-Fostered Bureaucratic Autonomy: Exploring the Institutional Roots of a Post-Chevron Moment in Administrative Law and Politics 

Daniel Walters, University of Wisconsin






A Person Otherwise Innocent: Policing Entrapment in Preventative, Undercover Counterterrorism Investigations 

By John Sherman 


Making National Security Letters Effective and Constitutional 

By Richard Goldman 


‘Academic Freedom’ as a Barrier to Academic Freedom 

By Matthew Kudzin 




In the Shadow of the Article 1: Applying a Dormant Commerce Clause Analysis to State Laws Regulating Aliens

Erin Delany, New York University


Depoliticizing the Judiciary: Deconstructing Textualism

John Terry Dundon, George Washington University

Out of the Ivory Tower: Rethinking Judicial Elections with Lessons in Solidarity from Juries who Sentence Capital Defendants to Life

Chloe Cockburn, Harvard University

Other Finalists

Popular Sovereignty, Unpopular Change: Federal Protection of State Constitutionalism

Russell Plato, New York University

A Tangled Web We Weave: International Enforcement of Speech Restrictions in an Online World

Gregory Cooper, University of Pennsylvania

The Party or the People: Whose Ballot Choice does the Constitution Protect?

Guy Danilowitz, University of California, Davis

The Invidiousness Requirement: Recognizing the Need to Expand the Scope of Section 1983 (3) to Provide Relief for Politically Motivated Discrimination

Jonathan Kossak, University of Pennsylvania

“Tinker’s Armband, But not Cohen’s Jacket”: Holding the Line at Content Neutrality for Student Speech

Misha Issak, University of Pennsylvania

Mandated Internet Neutrality and the First Amendment: Lessons from Turner

Moran Yemini, New York University

Political Gerrymandering after LULAC v. Perry: Considering Political Science for Legislative Action

William Phelan, Catholic University




The Government’s Categorical Revocation of the Voting Rights of the Mentally Disabled: A Call to Replace Overinclusive State Laws with an Individuated Test

Stephanie J. Benedetto, Emory University


A Child’s Right: What Should the State be Required to Provide to Teenagers Aging Out of Foster Care?

Katherine M. Swift, University of Chicago

Nonjusticiable and Irremediable: Partisan Gerrymandering’s Attack on our Representative Democracy

Evan Parness, Cornell University

Other Finalists

A Role for Courts in Reparations

Zachary Bookman, Yale University

Failure to Reinstate as an Independent Claim Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

Kristie Blunt, University of Pennsylvania

The Unconstitutional Digital Divide: The Right to Receive Information the Children’s Internet Protection Act and America’s Poor

Mary Ashby Brown, American University

Landell v. Sorrell, The First Amendment and Limits to Campaign Spending: Is there an Equality Interest?

Lara Rabiee, CUNY

Indian Law and the Problem of History: Orality as Evidence

Allison Sheedy, University of Pennsylvania




The Underprivileged Profession: The Case for Supreme Court Recognition of the Journalist's Privilege

Jeffrey Nestler, University of Pennsylvania


Tradition and Neutrality: Examining Government Aid to the Scouts National Jamboree

Goldburn P. Maynard Jr., University of Chicago

Shots Heard Round the World: International and Foreign Law as Mechanisms to Interpret the Second Amendment

Scott Medlock, University of Texas

Other Finalists Rotten and Deeply Rooted: An Historical Consideration of 'Activist Judges,' the Fugitive Slave Clause, and the Federal Marriage Amendment

Jeffrey C. Brook, Tulane University

Suspending Habeas Corpus: Article I, Section 9, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution; Due Process; and the War on Terror

Tor Ekeland, Fordham University

Church and State in Black Communities: A Political-Critical Analysis of Modern Establishment Clause Jurisprudence

Kelsi Corkran, University of Chicago

Tradition Is Not Law: Advocating a Single Determinative Test for Establishment Clause Cases

Michele Hyndman, Cleveland State University

Substantive Due Process as Legitimate Judicial Activism: From Lochner to Lawrence

Tim Loper, University of Pennsylvania

Gingles in Limbo: Coalitional Districts, Party Primaries, and Manageable Vote Dilution Claims

Luke McLoughlin, New York University

The Due Process Guarantees of Hamdi v. Rumsfeld: Where They Came From and Where They Can Lead Us

Matthew Popowsky, New York University