Prof. Brad Joondeph joined the Santa Clara Law faculty in 2000 and writes in the areas of tax law and Constitutional law.
Why do you write?
Because I love ideas, and I find writing to be the truest test of how well I understand an idea. Writing forces you to come to terms with what you really think, to sort out the contradictions in your understandings, and express your ideas so clearly that others can understand them, too. It is a crucible for deeper understanding, and creating a permanent record of your own conceptions.
Is there a scholar who most inspires you?
There are hundreds of people whose work I really enjoy reading. In terms of inspiration, people like W.E.B. DuBois, Augustine, and Pope Francis come to mind.
What do you think has been your most impactful work?
For the two years from when the Affordable Care Act became law in 2010, until when the Supreme Court decided its constitutionality in 2012, I ran a blog (creatively titled the ACA Litigation Blog) which tracked every action filed in federal court challenging the law. It became a clearinghouse for all the pleadings, briefs, and judicial decisions in the 50-odd cases. As I have since learned, a fair number of people used it as a resource.
What impact did it have?
That is difficult to say. But I think it was helpful—to lawyers involved in the litigation, reporters, academics, and even just interested members of the public—to follow what was happening.
What’s your next project?
I am presently working on a Constitutional Law casebook, which I aim to publish this summer. It gathers materials I have been developing and using in teaching the course since 2000. I am hoping students find it more accessible than the typical Constitutional Law casebook. It also includes a number of problem sets, so students can constantly assess how well they are understanding the material.