The lower house of Germany's federal parliament, the Bundestag, now has 709 members, making it the second-largest parliament in the world. This is over 100 more members than the 598 seats Germany's voting laws formally provide for. Why is the Bundestag growing? To understand this, you have to understand German federal election law. Here's a… Continue reading What to Do About Germany’s Ever-Expanding Parliament?
I recently had the honor of translating Comparative Law by Uwe Kischel for Oxford University Press. The book received glowing reviews in the German press, and, after being published earlier this year, also in the English-speaking press. The FAZ recently reviewed (g, paywall) my English translation, and had this to say (my translation): The book does… Continue reading FAZ Reviews My Translation of Uwe Kischel’s ‘Comparative Law’
The Guardian recently ran an outstanding investigative piece on one of Germany's most notorious post-war crimes, the abduction and killing of the "girl in the box", Ursula Herrmann. Herrmann was abducted on 15 September 1981 while riding her bike in a prosperous lakeside town near Munich. Her kidnappers contact the parents asking for ransom, but… Continue reading German Courts and Police Don’t Record Interrogations or Court Testimony
An interesting case of allegedly looted art, with profound implications for German museum-goers, may be headed for the United States Supreme Court. The subject is the Guelph Treasure (Welfenschatz), a collection of ecclesiastical art created between the 11th and 15th centuries: The Treasure takes its name from the princely House of Guelph of Brunswick-Lüneburg. The Guelph Treasure… Continue reading Where Will the Guelph Treasure End Up?
The German Hemp Federation (GHF), a German marijuana-legalization lobby, has started what it calls a "justice offensive" (g) to convince the German Federal Constitutional Court (FCC) to declare laws against marijuana unconstitutional. The current state of play in Germany is that it is illegal nationwide, under § 29 (g) of the Narcotics Law, to possess… Continue reading A “Justice Offensive” to Legalize Marijuana in Germany