Balancing Security and Liberty in Germany

The practical consequence of the Constitutional Court’s balancing approach to maintain both security and liberty has been a shifting jurisprudence, a fact that is bound to buoy and bother American conservatives and progressives in equal measure. There is something in the Court’s cases for both camps. Before 9/11, the Court deferred to the legislature’s attempts at promoting security. This inclination, however, changed dramatically in the post-9/11 period. In a string of cases the Court has consistently invalidated national security legislation for failing to adequately take account of constitutionally protected liberty interests.

Lead Author

Russell A. Miller
Russell A. Miller joined Washington and Lee as an Associate Professor of Law in 2008. His teaching and scholarly research focuses on comparative constitutional law and public international law. Professor Miller is the co-founder and Co-Editor in Chief of the German Law Journal, an on-line, English-language journal reporting on developments in German, European and International jurisprudence. Professor Miller was a 1999/2000 Robert Bosch Foundation Fellow and he has enjoyed internship and clerkship experiences at the German Federal Constitutional Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Professor Miller is a frequent Visiting Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and Public International Law in Heidelberg.
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