William Baude

William Baude

Professor of Law, Faculty Director, Constitutional Law Institute

William Baude is a Professor of Law and the Faculty Director of the Constitutional Law Institute at the University of Chicago Law School, where he teaches federal courts, constitutional law, and conflict of laws. His current research interests include different aspects of the Fourteenth Amendment (particularly both Section One and Section Three) and the nature of judicial discretion.

Among his other activities Baude is: the co-editor of two textbooks, The Constitution of the United States and Hart & Wechsler's Federal Courts in the Federal System; an Affiliated Scholar at the Center for the Study of Constitutional Originalism; a founding member of the Academic Freedom Alliance; a member of the American Law Institute; an occasional blogger at The Volokh Conspiracy; and a podcaster on Divided Argument. He also recently served on the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States.

Professor Baude received his BS in Mathematics from the University of Chicago and his JD from Yale Law School. He then clerked for then-Judge Michael McConnell on the United States Court of Appeals, and Chief Justice John Roberts on the United States Supreme Court. Before joining the Chicago faculty, he was a fellow at the Stanford Constitutional Law Center, and a lawyer in Washington, DC.


Yale Law School

  • JD, 2007
  • Articles and Essays Editor, Yale Law Journal

University of Chicago

BS in mathematics with specialization in economics, 2004


University of Chicago Law School

  • Faculty Director, Constitutional Law Institute, 2020-present
  • Professor of Law, 2018-present
  • Aaron Director Research Scholar, 2018-2020
  • Neubauer Family Assistant Professor of Law, 2014-2018

Stanford Law School

  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Law, Winter/Spring 2018
  • Fellow, Constitutional Law Center, 2011-2013 

University of San Diego Law School

Summer Fellow, Center for the Study of Constitutional Originalism, 2012 & 2013

Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber LLP

Associate, 2009-2011

Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., U.S. Supreme Court

Law clerk, 2008- 2009

Judge Michael McConnell, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit

Law clerk, August 2007-2008

Books (Author)

  • The Constitution of the United States (3rd ed.) (Foundation Press, 2016) (with Michael S. Paulsen & Steven Calabresi & Michael W. McConnell & Samuel Bray ).cu
  • The Constitution of the United States (4th ed.) (Foundation Press, 2021) (with Michael S. Paulsen & Steven Calabresi & Michael W. McConnell & Samuel Bray ).
  • Hart & Wechsler’s Federal Courts in the Federal System, Supplement, 7th ed., 2022 Supplement (2022) (with Jack L. Goldsmith, John F. Manning, James E. Pfander & Amanda L. Tyler).
  • The Constitution of the United States (5th ed.) (Foundation Press, 2023) (with Michael S. Paulsen & Michael W. McConnell & Samuel Bray ).

Journal Articles

  • "Foreword: The Supreme Court's Shadow Docket," 9 New York University Journal of Law and Liberty 1 (2015). cu
  • "Compelled Subsidies and the First Amendment," 132 Harvard Law Review 171 (2018) (with Eugene Volokh). ssrn cu
  • "Severability First Principles," 109 Virginia Law Review __ (2023). ssrn
  • "State Regulation and the Necessary and Proper Clause," 65 Case Western Reserve Law Review 308 (2015). ssrn cu
  • "Grounding Originalism," 113 Northwestern University Law Review 1455 (2019) (with Stephen E. Sachs). ssrn
  • "The "Common-Good" Manifesto," 136 Harvard Law Review 861 (2023) (with Stephen E. Sachs). www
  • "Is Originalism Our Law?," 115 Columbia Law Review 2349 (2015). cu www
  • "Originalism and the Law of the Past," 37 Law & History Review 809 (2019) (with Stephen E. Sachs). ssrn www
  • "The Law of Interpretation," 130 Harvard Law Review 1079 (2017) (with Stephen E. Sachs). ssrn cu
  • "The Unconstitutionality of Justice Black," 98 Texas Law Review 327 (2019). www
  • "The Positive Law Model of the Fourth Amendment," 129 Harvard Law Review 1821 (2016) (with James Y. Stern). ssrn cu www
  • "Precedent and Discretion," 2019 Supreme Court Review 313 (2020). www
  • "Making Doctrinal Work More Rigorous: Lessons from Systematic Reviews," 84 University of Chicago Law Review 37 (2017) (with Adam Chilton & Anup Malani). ssrn cu
  • "Adjudication Outside Article III," 133 Harvard Law Review 1511 (2020). ssrn www
  • "Originalism's Bite," 201 Green Bag 103 (2016) (with Stephen E. Sachs). ssrn cu
  • "Constitutionalizing Interstate Relations: The Temptation of the Dark Side," 44 Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy 57 (2021). www
  • "Sovereign Immunity and the Constitutional Text," 103 Virginia Law Review 1 (2017). ssrn cu
  • "Is Quasi-Judicial Immunity Qualified Immunity?," 74 Stanford Law Review Online 115 (2022). ssrn www
  • "Rethinking the Federal Eminent Domain Power," 122 Yale Law Journal 1738 (2013). ssrn cu www
  • "Is Qualified Immunity Unlawful?," 106 California Law Review 45 (2018). ssrn cu www
  • "The Misunderstood Eleventh Amendment," 169 University of Pennsylvania Law Review 609 (2021) (with Stephen E. Sachs). www
  • "Beyond DOMA: Choice of State Law in Federal Statutes," 64 Stanford Law Review 1371 (2012). ssrn cu
  • "Standing in the Shadow of Congress," 2016 Supreme Court Review 197 (2017). cu www
  • "The Official Story of The Law," 20 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 1 (2022) (with Stephen E. Sachs). www
  • "Signing Unconstitutional Laws," 86 Indiana Law Journal 303 (2011). ssrn cu www
  • "A Call for Developing a Field of Positive Legal Methodology," 84 University of Chicago Law Review 1 (2017) (with Adam Chilton & Anup Malani). cu
  • "Understanding Prophylactic Supreme Court Decisions," JOTWELL __ (2014). www
  • "The Judgment Power," 96 Georgetown Law Journal 1807 (2008). ssrn cu
  • "Micro-Symposium: Richard Posner's 'What is Obviously Wrong with the Federal Judiciary'," 20 Green Bag 81 (2016). cu
  • "State Boundaries and Constitutional Limits," JOTWELL __ (2013). www
  • "Jurisdiction and Constitutional Crisis," 65 Florida Law Review Forum 1 (2013) (response to Gerard N. Magliocca, The Gold Clause Cases and Constitutional Necessity, 64 FLA. L. REV. 1243 2012). ssrn cu www
  • "Constitutional Liquidation," 71 Stanford Law Review 1 (2019). ssrn cu
  • "New Light on the Old World of Commandeering," JOTWELL __ (2012). www
  • "Clarification Needed: Fixing the Jurisdiction Venue and Clarification Act," 110 Michigan Law Review First Impressions 33 (2012). ssrn cu www
  • "Arguing with Friends," 117 Michigan Law Review 319 (2018) (with Ryan D. Doerfler). ssrn cu
  • "Access to Eagles," 14 Green Bag 245 (2011).
  • "Interstate Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage After Windsor," 8 New York University Journal of Law and Liberty 150 (2013). ssrn cu
  • "Originalism as a Constraint on Judges," 84 University of Chicago Law Review 2213 (2018). ssrn cu
  • "The Real Enemies of Democracy," 109 California Law Review 2407 (2021).
  • Response, "Sharing the Necessary and Proper Clause", 128 Harvard Law Review Forum 39 (2014) (response to John Manning, The Supreme Court, 2013 Term – Foreword: The Means of Constitutional Power, 128 Harv. L. Rev. 1 2014). ssrn cu
  • "The (Not So) Plain Meaning Rule," 84 University of Chicago Law Review 539 (2017) (with Ryan D. Doerfler). cu
  • "Reflections of a Supreme Court Commissioner," 106 Minnesota Law Review 2631 (2022). www

Book Sections

  • "The Court, or The Constitution?," in Moral Puzzles and Legal Perplexities: Essays on the Influence of Larry Alexander, Heidi Hurd ed. (Cambridge University Press, 2018). ssrn cu
  • "The Contingent Federal Power to Regulate Marijuana," in Marijuana Federalism: Uncle Sam and Mary Jane, Jonathan Adler ed. (Brookings Institution Press, 2020).
  • "The Treaty Power," in The Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court.2008).

Other Publications

  • "The Power of Promises," JOTWELL, July 10, 2015. www
  • "States of Confusion," New York Times, January 22, 2006. www
  • "The Supreme Court After Scalia," Chicago Tribune, February 11, 2016. www
  • "Heller Survives the Corpus," Second Thoughts Blog, July 9, 2021. www
  • "Why the Supreme Court's Texas Abortion Decision Is So Momentous," New York Times Magazine, June 2016 (with Eric A. Posner & Emily Bazelon ). www
  • "My Collected Supreme Court Commentary for the New Term," The Volokh Conspiracy, October 2, 2022. www
  • "Star Wars Destroyed (reviewing Cass R. Sunstein, The World According to Star Wars)," The New Rambler, May 31, 2016. www
  • "The Supreme Court Has a Perfectly Good Option in Its Most Divisive Case," The Atlantic, October 2022 (with Michael W. McConnell). www
  • "Where do the Supreme Court's Campaign Finance Cases Come From?," WashingtonPost.com, April 3, 2014. www
  • "What Do This Week's Supreme Court Decisions Mean For Immigration and Affirmative Action?," New York Times Magazine, June 24, 2016 (with Emily Bazelon, Eric A. Posner & Nikole Hannah-Jones). www
  • "The Constitutional State Legislature Doctrine," The Volokh Conspiracy, October 13, 2022. www
  • "The Takings Clause," in The Heritage Guide to the Constitution., Matthew Spalding & David F. Forte eds. 2014). cu
  • "Constitutional Officers: A Very Close Reading," JOTWELL, July 28, 2016. www
  • "Kavanaugh on Halfway Originalism," The Volokh Conspiracy, October 20, 2022. www
  • "The Problem with Retroactivity Rules," The New York Times Room for Debate, September 18, 2013. www
  • "Beyond the War on Terror (reviewing James Pfander, Constitutional Torts and the War on Terror)," Balkinization, May 19, 2017. www
  • "Opinion: Of course the Supreme Court Needs to Use History. The Question is How," The Washington Post, August 8, 2022. www
  • "Constitutional Avoidance in Baby Girl," PrawfsBlawg, June 29, 2013. www
  • "Were the Framers Originalists (and Does It Matter)?," Balkinization, October 24, 2018. www
  • "A Draft of "Severability First Principles" is Now Available," The Volokh Conspiracy, March 29, 2022. www
  • Regular Contributor, The Volokh Conspiracy. www
  • "Should Federal Indian Law Be Textualist?," The Volokh Conspiracy, October 31, 2019. www
  • "The Other Jurisdictional Question in Moore v. Harper," The Volokh Conspiracy, March 3, 2023. www
  • "Originalism and the Positive Turn," Liberty Law Forum, December 12, 2014. www
  • "Opinion: Conservatives, Don't Give Up On Your Principals, or the Supreme Court," New York Times, July 9, 2020. www
  • "The 2023 Scalia Lecture: Beyond Textualism?," The Volokh Conspiracy, March 1, 2023. www
  • "The Supreme Court's Secret Decisions," New York Times, February 3, 2015. www
  • "How Should Universities (Especially Law Schools) Treat the Powerful?," Reason, September 11, 2020. www
  • "Could Obama Bypass the Supreme Court?," New York Times, March 17, 2015. www
  • "Professor Justin Simard Writes In On the Importance of Citing Slavery," Reason, November 13, 2020. www
  • "Originalism: A Debate," University of Chicago Law School Record, Spring 2015 (with Eric A. Posner).
  • "What Divides The Court, and What Unites It," SCOTUSblog, June 27, 14. www
  • "The Legal Power of Standing," New York Times, May 14, 2015. www
  • "Whatever Your Ideology, President Obama’s Appointments Are Unconstitutional," Forbes, January 2014.
  • "Is Polygamy Next?," New York Times, July 21, 2015. www
  • "Married in New York but Not in Texas," Slate, April 2013. www
  • "Is the Death Penalty Unconstitutional?," New York Times, July 7, 2015. www
  • "Last Chance on Death Row," Wilson Quarterly, 2010. ssrn

Memberships and Professional Affiliations

  • Commissioner, Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States (2021)
  • Bar admissions, Illinois, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • Affiliated Scholar, Center for the Study of Constitutional Originalism, University of San Diego Law School
  • Board of Directors, The Yale Law Journal Corporation (2014-present; President 2015-present)
  • Founding Member, Academic Freedom Alliance
  • Member, American Law Institute (Adviser, Third Restatement of the Conflict of Laws)
  • Advisor, Regulation and Rule of Law Initiative, Hoover Institution (2016-2020)

Awards and Honors

  • Graduating Students Teaching Award (2020)
  • Paul M. Bator Award (2017)

Editorial Work