The Constitutionality of Local Option Laws, 12 Central Law Journal 123 (1881)
In an article contributed to this journal some time since, the writer, after reviewing the subject somewhat at length, arrived at the conclusion that the local option laws are unconstitutional. The article seems to have been suggested by the efforts that were then being made in the State of Ohio, to induce the legislature of that State to enact a law of this character. The conclusion, as embodied in the writer's words, was as follows: "Whether we look at this question in the light of the overwhelming analogy furnished by the decided weight of judicial authority in this and other States, or whether we confine it to the plain text of the Constitution of Ohio, it seems difficult to reach any conclusion other than that the scheme of local option, as it is now urged upon the legislature and the public of the State, will be found radically and fundamentally defective when brought to the decisive test of judicial scrutiny." We sincerely doubt whether "the decided weight of judicial authority" is quite so "overwhelming" in its character, as the writer seems to have supposed. It certainly is not so "overwhelming," as to render it "difficult to reach any conclusion other than that the scheme" was unconstitutional. The writer has evidently over-estimated his difficulties, and mistaken the weight of authority.
Date of Authorship for this Version
Rogers, Henry Wade, "The Constitutionality of Local Option Laws" (1881). Faculty Scholarship Series. Paper 4045.