Ray Brescia Urges SCOTUS to Heed Lessons of the “Boss” Tweed Trial

Ray Brescia (’92), Associate Dean for Research and Intellectual Life and Hon. Harold R. Tyler Chair in Law and Technology at Albany Law School, authored an article for Time applying lessons from the 1872 William “Boss” Tweed “political trial of the century” to today’s Trump cases challenging the rule of law and democracy (“The 19th Century Case That Transformed the Legal System—And Holds a Lesson for the Trump Trials,” May 20). “The Court might fall into the trap that the legal system avoided during Tweed’s prosecution over a century ago. It could reject the principle that only neutral justice, and accountability for even the most powerful political figures, can provide the stability necessary for the U.S. to thrive politically and economically — and help it avoid kleptocracy, and even national demise. . . . [T]he Supreme Court cannot short circuit this process or provide special protections for Trump. Doing so would ignore the warnings of John Adams and the lesson of the ‘Boss’ Tweed trial.”