Somin Comments Cited by Denver Post

A recent opinion piece running in The Denver Post cited comments by Professor Ilya Somin in discussing a Supreme Court decision in which the justices voted 6-3 that the president does not have the authority to order states to follow international agreements in the courts.

Under terms of the Vienna Convention, law enforcement officials must inform a citizen's consulate after an arrest. In a 1993 Texas case, Houston police failed to notify the Mexican consulate of the arrest of a Mexican citizen, who had spent most of his life in the U.S., after his arrest for participation in a gang rape and double homicide. The Cour International de Justice (World Court) ordered the U.S. to reconsider the case, and President Bush, despite prior withdrawal from the organization, issued a memorandum instructing U.S. state courts to comply with an international court ruling.

Somin commented that "there is little reason to believe that ICJ decisions are likely to establish better legal rules than those produced by our domestic law similar international courts are deeply suspect because most of their judges represent oppressive dictatorships or, at best, unaccountable elites from democratic states."

Limiting executive power, The Denver Post, March 27, 2008. By David Harsanyi.

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