Fall 2021

The following listed below are Gray Center events that have taken place in the fall semester of 2021. They include conferences, symposiums, lectures, commentary, and other involvement of the Center and its Co-Executive Directors.

November 11

Co-Executive Director Mascott addresses George Washington University Law students and alumni on administrative law and the 2021-22 Supreme Court term



October 28

Co-Executive Director Mascott to provide commentary on Former WH Counsel Don McGahn’s Sullivan Lecture at the Ohio Statehouse

On Thursday, October 28, 2021, Gray Center Co-Executive Director Jennifer Mascott provided response commentary at the 42nd Annual John E. Sullivan Lecture, hosted by Capital University Law School, at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio.

Mascott’s commentary complemented Donald F. McGahn II’s lecture on “Administrative Law: Past, Present, and Future.” McGahn currently works at Jones Day, with the title of Government Regulation Practice Leader. Prior to this, he served as White House Counsel to President Donald J. Trump.

Click here for more information about the event>>

October 21

Justice Thomas’s Thirty-Year Legacy on the Court
Co-Hosted by The Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation

The Gray Center and The Heritage Foundation co-hosted a special event to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the confirmation of Justice Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court of the United States. It brought together jurists, legal academics, and practitioners, including many of his former clerks, where we discussed the Justice’s jurisprudence and impact on the Court over the past three decades.

Click here for more information about the event>>

October 7
Podcast Appearance by Co-Director Mascott

The Supreme Court’s “Shadow Docket”
We The People Podcast, National Constitution Center

Description from the National Constitution Center:

Last week, Supreme Court Justice Samuel A. Alito gave a speech responding to criticism of the Supreme Court’s emergency docket levied by, among others, his fellow Justices Elena Kagan and Stephen Breyer. On this week’s episode, we explain what types of cases comprise the Court’s the emergency docket—sometimes referred to as the “shadow docket,” a term coined by scholar Will Baude—and whether the Court’s approach to emergency decision-making has changed in recent years, and why.

Host Jeffrey Rosen is joined by law professors Jennifer Mascott of George Mason Law School and Stephen Vladeck of the University of Texas Law School, both of whom testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee at its hearing about the shadow docket this week. They illuminate current debates surrounding the shadow docket and detail some recent decisions that have drawn increased scrutiny to the Court’s emergency rulings, including in COVID-related cases, the Texas abortion case, and in challenges to some of President Trump’s immigration policies.

Click here to listen to Mascott and the podcast>>

October 1

Presidential Administration in a Polarized Era

The Gray Center first hosted a research roundtable to discuss seven new working papers on various aspects of presidential administration. The authors discussed their papers with other scholars, and then they presented their papers on panels with commentary from other experts at this conference.

We were also joined by two authors of recent books on presidential power: Saikrishna Prakash, author of The Living Presidency: An Originalist Argument against Its Ever-Expanding Powers, and John Yoo, author of Defender in Chief: Donald Trump’s Fight for Presidential Power.
Copies of the books were given out at the event.

Click here for more information about the event>>

September 29
Co-Director Mascott’s Senate Judiciary Committee Testimony

Texas’s Unconstitutional Abortion Ban and the Role of the Shadow Docket
U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee

Chaired by Senator Durbin

On September 29, 2021, Gray Center Co-Executive Director Jennifer Mascott testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. The hearing was titled “Texas’s Unconstitutional Abortion Ban and the Role of the Shadow Docket.” Mascott was joined by Texas State Representative The Honorable Donna Howard, University of Texas School of Law Professor Stephen I. Vladeck, President and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center Fatima Goss Graves, and the Solicitor General of Alabama Edmund Gerard LaCour Jr. She discussed issues related to federal jurisdiction and the Supreme Court’s non-merits orders docket. 

Click here to watch video of Mascott’s testimony>>
Click here to read Mascott’s prepared statement>>

September 17

Memorial Symposium in Honor of Judge Stephen F. Williams

When Judge Stephen Williams died last year, he left behind family, friends, colleagues, protégés, and admirers who a year later still feel his absence dearly. He also left behind an enormous legacy, in his invaluable contributions to constitutional law, administrative law, regulatory policy, and liberal democracy itself.

His judicial opinions, articles, and books will be discussed for many years to come. And to continue that discussion, it was our pleasure and honor to host an event in his memory: a conference for new papers written for a symposium on Judge Williams’s legacy in law and liberty.

Click here for more information about the event>>