United States v. Morrison
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|United States v. Morrison|
|Court||U.S. Supreme Court|
|Citation||529 U.S. 598|
|Date decided||May 2000|
The petitioner was raped at Virginia Tech by two members of the football team. She became severely emotionally depressed and stopped attending classes and eventually withdrew from the university. She filed suit against the members in the school’s administrative system, and one of the boys was suspended for two semesters. After a re-trial, the boy’s punishment was set aside by a vice president of the college, and the petitioner filed suit in federal court under the Violence Against Women Act of 1994.
- Whether Congress has authority to enact the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 under the Commerce clause.
- More specifically, whether a statute that defines a crime of violence motivated by gender have a substantial relation to interstate commerce.
- Whether Congress has authority to enact the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 under the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment
The Act is unconstitutional.
- Gender motivated crimes of violence are not economic in nature, and thus cannot be upheld under the Commerce Clause regulation.
- Congress may not regulate non-economic, violent criminal conduct based solely on that conduct’s aggregate effect on interstate commerce.