AG "101" A Brief Introduction to the World of Attorneys General
The following is a video of the National State Attorneys General Program Director James E. Tierney, former Attorney General of Maine, providing an introduction to the office of state attorneys general. The remarks are directed to lawyers and non-lawyers who are interested in the history, culture, jurisdiction and operations of state attorneys general offices and are not designed to give legal or policy advice, but to provide an overview of this unique governmental institution.
The "State Executive Nondefense" ("Failure to Defend") issue continues to reverberate within the world of attorneys general. The National State Attorney's General Program has assembled a compilation of various materials in order to allow those interested to get closer to the truth. The materials consist of several excellent law review articles, but also contain press accounts and op-eds from attorneys general who wrestle with the issue. The materials can be found Here
Should State Attorneys General be Elected or Appointed?
In January of 2008, Director Tierney testified for ninety minutes before Washington, D.C. Council’s Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary regarding Bill 17-548, “The Attorney General of the District of Columbia Clarification Act of 2007.” At the time, the Attorney General of the District of Columbia was appointed by the Mayor and served at his pleasure. The legislation, proposed by Committee Chairperson Philip Mendelson attempted to change this “at will” status by providing a series of reforms that would increase the Attorney General’s independence. Tierney testified that it was absolutely necessary that the Mayor not be allowed to remove an Attorney General without showing cause. He also recommended that, once confirmed, an Attorney General serve for a defined period of years.The video is included because it goes to the core of the independence of attorneys general.
State role in "Our Federalism"
Faculty lunch held on Wednesday, June 24 - The program departed from its usual staple of Supreme Court cases. The discussion focused on the state role in "Our Federalism." The current reality of “Our Federalism” is one of vigorous state activity resulting from federal permission, with states playing a central role in both shaping and administering various federal programs. As Jessica Bulman-Pozen writes, “This state role is thus quite different from a traditional federalism conception pitting autonomous states against an autonomous federal government; integration, not separation, is key.” Jim Tierney presented and Jessica Bulman-Pozen was a special commentator.