With an insider's view, Bringing Justice to the People charts the evolution of the freedom-based public interest law movement's fight against such judicial activism, from the birth of the Pacific Legal Foundation on through the political and legal battles fought and won, including school choice, religious liberty, and racial preferences.
"In the area of property rights, pro-freedom legal organizations led by the Pacific Legal Foundation formulated the legal concept of “regulatory takings”, which states that government regulations that significantly restrict land use and lower land value constitute a “taking” just as much as does the government’s physical occupation of the land. The foundation’s concept won before the Supreme Court in Nollan v. California Coastal Commission in 1987 and again in Dolan v. City of Tigard in 1994. The foundation, along with other members of the pro-freedom public interest law movement, is resolved to continue defending the interests – and the constitutional rights – of private property owners.
In the area of school choice, pro-freedom litigators led by Clint Bolick of the Institute for Justice prevailed I the Supreme Court Zelman v. Simmons-Harris in 2002 with their argument that school choice was about education, not religion. The central issue, they argued, was using such things as school vouchers and tuition tax credits to provide educational opportunities for children, particularly in the inner cities, who urgently need them. When the Supreme Court agreed, Bolick said, “a constitutional cloud” was lifted from school choice, and minority and low-income parents celebrated."
As Distinguished Fellow in Conservative Thought, Lee Edwards, Ph.D., is Heritage's in-house authority on the U.S. conservative movement.
A leading historian of American conservatism, Edwards is the author or editor of 20 books, including biographies of Ronald Reagan, Barry Goldwater and Edwin Meese III as well as histories of The Heritage Foundation and the movement as a whole.
Edwards also is chairman of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, which dedicated the Victims of Communism Memorial in 2007 and launched the online Global Museum on Communism in 2009.
Edwards is an adjunct professor of politics at the Catholic University of America. He was the founding director of the Institute of Political Journalism at Georgetown University and a fellow at the Institute of Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
Edwards is a past president of the Philadelphia Society and a media fellow at the Hoover Institution.
His works have been translated into Chinese, Japanese, Swedish and French. His next book, a biography of William F. Buckley Jr., is due from ISI Books in spring 2010.
Edwards appears frequently on cable and broadcast outlets such as Fox News, CNN, Bloomberg, NBC, PBS, C-SPAN and NPR. He has been published in the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, National Review, Human Events and American Spectator.
Among his awards and honors are the Millennium Star of Lithuania, the Cross of Terra Mariana of Estonia, the Friendship Medal of Diplomacy from the Republic of China (Taiwan), the John Ashbrook Award, the Reed Irvine Accuracy in Media Award and the Walter Judd Freedom Award.
Edwards earned a doctorate in world politics from the Catholic University of America. He has a bachelor of arts degree in English from Duke University and did graduate work at The Sorbonne, Paris. He received an honorary doctoral degree in humane letters from Grove City College.