The modern idea that the Constitution, without further amendment, is an infinitely elastic document that allows government to grow to meet public demands of whatever kind must be challenged. Americans must come to appreciate that the Founding Fathers, who were keenly aware of the expansive tendencies of government, wrote the Constitution precisely to check that kind of thinking and that possibility. The Founders meant government to be our servant, not our master, and they meant it to serve us in a very limited way-by securing our rights, as the Declaration of Independence says, and by doing those few other things that government does best, as spelled out in the Constitution.

More on Constitutional Studies


Quackery and Bluster Define SALT Lawsuit

By Reilly Stephens. Washington Examiner. September 5, 2018.

Brett Kavanaugh Needs to Check His Executive Privilege

By Gene Healy. American Conservative. July 25, 2018.

Trump Went with a Safe, Strong Choice for SCOTUS. But What a Ride It Was

By Ilya Shapiro. The Federalist. July 10, 2018.

Cato Studies

Losing Count: The Empty Case for “High-Capacity” Magazine Restrictions

By Matthew Larosiere. Legal Policy Bulletin No. 3. July 17, 2018.

What Kind of a Judge Is Neil Gorsuch?

By Ilya Shapiro and Frank Garrison. Legal Policy Bulletin No. 2. March 22, 2017.

The Illegal Tenure of Civil Rights Head Vanita Gupta

By Thomas A. Berry. Legal Policy Bulletin No. 1. January 19, 2017.


The Role of the Judiciary

Cato's Letter. Clint Bolick. Vol. 16. No. 2. Spring 2018.

Federal Appeals Court Should Reject Total Immunity for Prosecutors

Jay Schweikert. New York Law Journal. April 25, 2018.

Christie v. NCAA: Anti-Commandeering or Bust

Jonathan Wood and Ilya Shapiro. The Federalist Society Review. Vol. 18. November 10, 2017.

Public Filings

Worman v. Healey

By Joseph G.S. Greenlee, David B. Kopel, Ilya Shapiro, Trevor Burrus, & Matthew Larosiere. Legal Briefs. August 29, 2018.

LMP Services v. City of Chicago

By Matthew A. Clemente, Gordon D. Todd, David A. Miller, Mackenzi Siebert, & Ilya Shapiro. Legal Briefs. August 20, 2018.

Manhattan Community Access Corporation v. Halleck

By David Debold, Vince Eisinger, Jacob Arber, Ilya Shapiro, & Trevor Burrus. Legal Briefs. July 25, 2018.

Cato Reviews & Journals


Supreme Court Review. 2017-2018.

Looking Ahead: October Term 2018

Erin E. Murphy. Supreme Court Review. 2017-2018.

“Officers” in the Supreme Court: Lucia v. SEC

Jennifer Mascott. Supreme Court Review. 2017-2018.


The Indian Child Welfare Act at 40

Featuring Timothy Sandefur, Matthew D. McGill, and Charles Rothfeld. September 20, 2018. Policy Forum.

17th Annual Constitution Day

Featuring Roger Pilon, Ilya Shapiro, David Forte, Thomas C. Berg, Robert McNamara, Trevor Burrus, Mark Brnovich, Joseph Bishop-Henchman, Jennifer Mascott, Clark Neily, Josh Blackman, Walter Olson, & George F. Will. September 17, 2018. Conference.

Can Free Speech Be Progressive?

Featuring John Samples, Louis Michael Seidman, Robert Bauer, & Ronald Collins. September 11, 2018. Policy Forum.