This Article provides an insight into the Court’s divergent views on the federal standing issue in Hollingsworth by viewing the Justices’ conflicting positions through the lens of the Court’s Erie jurisprudence, which, at its core, focuses on calibrating the proper judicial balance of power in a given case between conflicting federal and state interests in determining vertical choice-of-law issues. Hollingsworth is uniquely positioned at the intersection of federal standing principles and Erie doctrine, confronting the Court with competing balance of power concerns inherent in our federal system. Standing, as a requirement for the limited exercise of federal judicial power under Article III, addresses the horizontal balance of power among the three branches of the federal government. Erie addresses the vertical balance of power between federal and state courts. Standing is a malleable doctrine that federal courts have employed to avoid ruling —prematurely in the case of same-sex marriage—on the merits of a controversial issue. This Article employs Erie doctrine to critically assess whether a closely divided Supreme Court in Hollingsworth correctly privileged the horizontal balance of power concerns at the expense of the vertical ones.
Recommended CitationGlenn S. Koppel, “Standing” in the Shadow of Erie: Federalism in the Balance in Hollingsworth v. Perry, 34 Pace L. Rev. 631 (2014)
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