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Spring 2025 Seminar

Legal Tools for Protecting Democracy and the Rule of Law in America

To learn more about the Clinical Curriculum and Registration, please visit our Clinical Registration Center.
You can also find more information on How to Register for Clinics and How Clinical Credits Work.

For more information about this clinic, please visit the Clinic Website, Clinic Q&A and OCP Blog Highlights.

Required Clinic Component: Democracy and the Rule of Law Clinic (3-5 spring clinical credits). The clinic and course are bundled; your enrollment in the clinic will automatically enroll you in this required course.
Additional Co-/Pre-Requisites: None.
By Permission: No.
Add/Drop Deadline: December 13, 2024.
LLM Students: International students on F-1 student visas are required to have Curricular Practical Training (CPT) authorization; LL.M. students are not eligible for CPT.

This seminar is required for all students enrolled in the Democracy and the Rule of Law Clinic. The course will begin by exploring the conceptual and theoretical debates relating to democratic decline in the U.S. and around the world. We will then focus on the set of integrated advocacy tools available to protect our democratic institutions. This will include the development and conduct of impact litigation strategies; policy advocacy and coordination; transparency promotion and government oversight; strategic communications; and other tools to prompt pro-democratic reform. The course will then cover the substantive legal and policy issues that students will encounter in their clinical work, such as issues relating to protecting free and fair elections, countering disinformation, and reinforcing legal guardrails designed to prevent abuses of executive authority.  Finally, the course will consider longer-term legal and policy challenges to constitutional democracy in the United States, and potential solutions. Through regular presentations and discussions, students will also have the opportunity to generate creative advocacy ideas, develop their Clinic work, and receive feedback from their Clinic colleagues.

Please see the Democracy and the Rule of Law Clinic course description for additional information.