Introduction

Introduction This issue, like so many others, again illustrates how varied the history of the U.S. Supreme Court can be, and how far we have expanded the parameters of that subject. As I have often remarked, when I was in college and even in law school, all we heard about the high court was its opinions. A very famous jurist on the Fifth Circuit even said that judicial biographies were irrelevant; the only thing that counted was what ended up in U.S. Reports.As anyone who paid attention to the 2016 Presidential contest knows, Donald Trump's call to build a wall at the Mexican border with the United States resonated strongly with many Americans who saw unfettered immigration as a major cause of the nation's economic problems. As Polly Price shows us, this idea is not new in our history, and in one of its earlier iterations, came before the Supreme Court in several cases that Justice Stephen Field labeled the Chinese Exclusion Cases. Field, it should be noted, was probably the only member of the Court who had first‐hand knowledge of Chinese workers in the United States. His opinions showed little sympathy for the immigrants, and as Price, the Asa http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Supreme Court History Wiley

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Publisher
Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
Copyright
© Supreme Court Historical Society
ISSN
1059-4329
eISSN
1540-5818
D.O.I.
10.1111/jsch.12172
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This issue, like so many others, again illustrates how varied the history of the U.S. Supreme Court can be, and how far we have expanded the parameters of that subject. As I have often remarked, when I was in college and even in law school, all we heard about the high court was its opinions. A very famous jurist on the Fifth Circuit even said that judicial biographies were irrelevant; the only thing that counted was what ended up in U.S. Reports.As anyone who paid attention to the 2016 Presidential contest knows, Donald Trump's call to build a wall at the Mexican border with the United States resonated strongly with many Americans who saw unfettered immigration as a major cause of the nation's economic problems. As Polly Price shows us, this idea is not new in our history, and in one of its earlier iterations, came before the Supreme Court in several cases that Justice Stephen Field labeled the Chinese Exclusion Cases. Field, it should be noted, was probably the only member of the Court who had first‐hand knowledge of Chinese workers in the United States. His opinions showed little sympathy for the immigrants, and as Price, the Asa

Journal

Journal of Supreme Court HistoryWiley

Published: Jan 1, 2018

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