The Sixth Annual Western Conference

"Challenges Facing California and the Western States"
Start : Saturday, January 28, 2012 10:00 AM
End : Saturday, January 28, 2012 04:00 PM
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
40 Presidential Drive
Telephone: (805) 522-2977
Fax: (805) 520-9702
Simi Valley, CA 93065

The Federalist Society
presents its
Sixth Annual Western Conference:

 California State Capitol Building
Challenges Facing California and the Western States

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
January 28, 2012

Views and opinions expressed by the Federalist Society are not necessarily shared by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.

Luncheon Exchange:

Alex Kozinski
Hon. Alex Kozinski,
U.S. Court of Appeals,
Ninth Circuit

Stephen Reinhardt
Hon. Stephen Reinhardt
U.S. Court of Appeals,
Ninth Circuit



California in Crisis: Are People and Jobs Leaving for Better Pastures? - Audio
10:15 a.m. - 12:00 Noon

Much has been written lately about companies’ unwillingness to invest or create new jobs in California. 2010 was the first census in which California did not add a member of Congress. Other states, including Texas, are seeing large influxes of new jobs and people. Some have suggested that California law (as passed by the legislature and as made by the courts) contributes to a negative business climate that discourages investment and job creation. This panel will look at California laws involving employment issues, tort liability, and environmental regulation and compare California’s approach to those of other states, including Texas to determine whether the law has become an impediment to job creation in California.


  • Mr. William J. Emanuel, Shareholder, Littler Mendelson PC
  • Mr. Jed Kolko, Chief Economist and Head of Analytics, Trulia
  • Mr. H. Scott Leviant, Attorney, Spiro Moss LLP
  • Mr. David A. Schwarz, Partner, Irell & Manella LLP and Member, Little Hoover Commission
  • Ms. Kate Comerford Todd, Chief Counsel, Appellate Litigation, National Chamber Litigation Center
  • Moderator: Hon. Carlos T. Bea, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • Introduction: Mr. Leonard A. Leo, Executive Vice President, The Federalist Society

A Conversation Between Judge Kozinski and Judge Reinhardt - Audio
12:00 Noon – 2:00 p.m.

  • Hon. Alex Kozinski, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • Hon. Stephen Reinhardt, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • Moderator: Mr. Eugene B. Meyer, President, The Federalist Society

Federalism and State Immigration Policy - Audio
2:15 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Arizona v. United States raises several cutting edge questions about federal preemption of state laws. These questions derive from Arizona’s “mirror image theory” of the case. That is, Arizona argues that its statutes are a mirror image of federal statutes, and therefore that no preemption problem exists. In arguing against that theory, the federal government has voiced what has been unflatteringly called “preemption by executive whim.” That is, that preemption can be created by federal executive branch enforcement (or, non-enforcement) priorities that essentially ignore enforcement of the statutes being mirrored. What do those competing claims mean in preemption analysis where, traditionally, courts have looked to the law as written/established, rather than as enforced?

Another big question here is whether a state may have specific policies where either (1) the federal government does not, or (2) the federal government is perceived to have failed in its policies. Arizona has expressly adopted a policy of “attrition through enforcement” in regard to illegal aliens. The federal government, on the other hand, has not ever adopted such a policy. As Ilya Shapiro put it, the national immigration system “is a remnant of various half-baked ‘reforms’ going back decades, it’s a schizophrenic set of laws that don’t advance any particular goal or mission.” Does a “policyless” federal system conflict with a state system that has a policy? Does it matter if that policy is “attrition through enforcement” or “sanctuary cities”? Moreover, does the federal government’s “failure” to have a workable or actual policy free a state to derive its own policy, at least where that vacuum of federal power is seen as having specific negative effects on the state?


  • Prof. Gabriel “Jack” Chin, UC Davis School of Law
  • Prof. John Eastman, Chapman University School of Law
  • Mr. Joe Sciarrotta, General Counsel to Governor Jan Brewer, Arizona
  • Prof. Margaret Stock, Counsel, Lane Powell LLC
  • Moderator: Hon. Edwin Meese, The Heritage Foundation and former U.S. Attorney General
  • Introduction: Mr. Eugene B. Meyer, President, The Federalist Society

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