Bucky Badger with UW Law faculty.

Wisconsin Law in Action: A University of Wisconsin Law School Podcast

Episode 27: Robert Yablon and Gerrylaundering

Photo of Prof. Rob Yablon. He is wearing a suit with a blue tie.

A remotely-recorded podcast interview with Associate Professor of Law and Faculty Co-Director of the State Democracy Research Initiative at the University of Wisconsin Law School Robert Yablon (SSRN; Law Repository).

Prof. Yablon (@RobYablon) discusses his newest article, “Gerrylaundering”, recently published in the NYU Law Review. This article introduces the concept of “gerrylaundering” in order to best describe voting district mapmakers’ best efforts to lock in their favorable position by preserving key elements of their existing maps. The article then applies the new term to the existing redistricting discourse to describe how people in power can use this strategy to cement their hold on power in a less radical manner than outright gerrymandering.

Prof. Yablon also discusses how he became interested in this topic and how it’s relevant to Wisconsin, as well as how he came up with the concept of “gerrylaundering” and how it relates to and is different from gerrymandering. He also gives a brief history of gerrymandering. He finishes up the discussion by talking about the techniques that mapmakers use in “gerrylaundering” and comparing them to gerrymandering efforts.

The interview was conducted on July 28, 2022. | 24:26 minutes; published August 25, 2022. Transcript file (PDF).

Links to the Podcast: Soundcloud | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher

Episode 26: Mark Sidel and Restriction of NGOs

Photo of Prof. Mark Sidel, in black suit with maroon tie in front of grey background.

A remotely-recorded podcast interview with University of Wisconsin Doyle-Bascom Professor of Law and Public Affairs Mark Sidel (SSRN; Law Repository).

Prof. Sidel begins by describing his professional experience and interest in nonprofits and philanthropic organizations- he originally worked with the Ford Foundation before becoming a law professor. He helped lead the program in China, Vietnam, and India/South Asia in the early-mid 1990s.

Prof. Sidel’s academic interests have also focused on Asia and NGOs (non-governmental organizations). He gives an explanation of NGOs and common terms related to NGOs before beginning the discussion of two of his recent articles on the increasing tendency of governments to restrict foreign investments, grants, and donations to nonprofit and philanthropic organizations in those countries.

Both of these papers (“Overseas NGOs and Foundations and Covid in China“; “Securitizing Overseas Nonprofit Work in China: Five Years of the Overseas NGO Law Framework and Its New Application to Academic Institutions“) focus on these policies in China but also touch on other countries and provide a review of the implications of these policies.

The interview was conducted on April 15, 2022. | 29:19 minutes; published April 25, 2022. Transcript file (PDF).

Links to the Podcast: Soundcloud | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher

Episode 25: Anuj Desai and Textualism

Photo of Prof. Anuj Desai in front of some law books. He is wearing a black suit and a blue bowtie.

A remotely-recorded podcast interview with University of Wisconsin Voss Bascom Professor of Law Anuj Desai (SSRN; Law Repository).

Prof. Desai teaches in both the Law School and the iSchool (Information School) at UW Madison, teaching courses in cyberlaw, the First Amendment, intellectual freedom, statutory interpretation, legislation and regulation, and copyright.

This interview focuses on Prof. Desai’s article “Text is Not Enough,” published in the Colorado Law Review.

The article is about textualism and statutory interpretation as seen through the lens of the 2020 Title VII Supreme Court Case Bostock v. Clayton County. Prof. Desai goes through the interpretation and reasoning by the Justices on the case.

The interview was conducted on Jan. 20, 2022. | 56:00 minutes; published Mar. 1, 2022. Transcript file (PDF).

Links to the Podcast: Soundcloud | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher