Trinity Lutheran and the Future of Public Funding for Religious Entities: A Conversation with Richard Garnett and Andrew Koppelman

Nov 20, 2017
Jenner & Block, 45th Floor
353 N Clark St.
Chicago, IL 60654
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Richard W. GarnettUniversity of Notre Dame Law School

Andrew M. KoppelmanNorthwestern Pritzker School of Law

Daniel B. RodriguezNorthwestern Pritzker School of Law

  • Andrew Koppelman and Rick Garnett - Trinity Lutheran and the Future of Public Funding for Religious Entities

Cosponsored by the Catholic Lawyers Guild, the Decalogue Society of Lawyers, the Christian Legal Society, the American Constitution Society, the Federalist Society, the Notre Dame Program on Church, State & Society, and Jenner & Block Chicago.

Should a religious institution be denied public funding solely because it is owned and operated by a religious entity? The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer decided that the state of Missouri violated the Free Exercise Clause by disqualifying a religious school from a state program. In this conversation, law scholars Richard Garnett and Andrew Koppelman will discuss the reasoning employed by the majority, the concurring justices, and the dissent; the place of Trinity Lutheran within broader public funding jurisprudence; and the implications of Trinity Lutheran for provisions under various state constitutions that bar all public funding for religious education and religious schools. Daniel B. Rodriguez, Dean and Harold Washington Professor at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, will moderate the discussion.


5:00pm            Registration
5:30pm            Introductions
5:40pm            Conversation
6:30pm            Audience Q&A
6:45pm            Reception
7:30pm            Close

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Richard W. Garnett is the Paul J. Schierl/Fort Howard Corporation Professor of Law and Concurrent Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame.  He is a leading authority on questions and debates regarding the role of religious believers and beliefs in politics and society.  He has published widely on these matters, is the author of dozens of law-review articles, book chapters, and he contributes to several law-related blogs, including Mirror of Justice and PrawfsBlawg.  His current research project, Two There Are: Understanding the Separation of Church and State, will be published by Cambridge University Press.

Andrew M. Koppelman is John Paul Stevens Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science at Northwestern University, where he received the 2015 Walder Award for Research Excellence.  His scholarship focuses on issues at the intersection of law and political philosophy.  His latest books are The Tough Luck Constitution and the Assault on Health Care Reform (Oxford University Press, 2013) and Defending American Religious Neutrality (Harvard University Press, 2013).  He has also published more than 100 articles in books and scholarly journals.  He is an occasional contributor to the Balkinization blog.

Daniel B. Rodriguez was appointed Dean and Harold Washington Professor at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law in January 2012. A nationally prominent law teacher and scholar, Rodriguez’s principal academic work is in the areas of administrative law, local government law, and constitutional law.  He also has a special interest in the law-business-technology interface and its impact on the future of legal education.  He is a leader in the application of political economy to the study of public law and has authored or co-authored a series of influential articles and book chapters in this vein.