Home Law School News 2014 Constitutional Law Symposium to examine Obamacare, LBJ’s ‘Great Society’

2014 Constitutional Law Symposium to examine Obamacare, LBJ’s ‘Great Society’

The Drake University Constitutional Law Center will again host the Constitutional Law Symposium with the support of Nate McCay and the law firm of Belin McCormick, P.C. on Saturday, April 12.

This year’s symposium will bring together acclaimed historians, authors, and political experts to discuss the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and the 50th anniversary of LBJ’s Great Society.

Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson

When President Lyndon B. Johnson proposed the Great Society 50 years ago, his sweeping vision was to end poverty and racial injustice. Government programs were created with the goals of eradicating poverty, eliminating racial discrimination, and bolstering health and education, especially for the poor.

Fifty years later, however, there is significant controversy about the results. Supporters argue that poverty has gone down because of these programs and that poverty would be much worse without them. Critics say these programs have spent billions of taxpayer dollars, created huge national bureaucracies, achieved little, and that the poor would be better off depending largely on the free market.

The U.S. is now seeing a renewed debate about inequality and economic progress. President Obama’s Affordable Care Act ranks among the federal government’s most dramatic efforts to augment the social safety net, though it contains some market-based elements not present in Great Society programs.

This symposium will explore the Great Society, LBJ, the legacy of the laws enacted at that time, and their significance in light of President Obama’s signature domestic welfare accomplishment.

Affordable Care Act

The symposium will take place on April 12 in the Sussman Theater of Drake University’s Olmsted Center, 2875 University Ave.

Visit www.law.drake.edu/clinicsCenters/conLaw/?pageID=conLawSymposium for more information on this year’s speakers, including a list of past Constitutional Law Symposium speakers.

Registration information: Registration is limited and costs $10 per person (free for Drake or Belin affiliated individuals), which covers the symposium and a continental breakfast.