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OU Institute for American Constitutional Heritage to host guest speaker for discussion about U.S. Constitution

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The Unwritten Constitution Poster

Poster for the upcoming unwritten constitution event

The OU Institute for American Constitutional Heritage is holding a talk about the U.S. constitution this coming Monday in the Bizzell Memorial Library.

Jeremy Bailey, director of the organization, said that the institute holds talks biannually, the first around Constitution Day in the fall and the second around Presidents Day in the spring.

“The mission for the Institute American Cultural Heritage is to provide programming about the Constitution and its development in the United States,” Bailey said.

This Presidents Day the speaker is George Thomas, a government professor at Claremont McKenna College in Claremont, California. 

Thomas has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Utah and a Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He is an expert in U.S. Constitutionalism and political thought, constitutional law, and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Thomas is the author of three books on the U.S. Constitution and has written for publications such as “Perspectives on Politics,” “Polity,” “National Affairs” and “Critical Review.” In 2006 he received the American Political Science Association’s Alexander L. George Award for the Best Article on Qualitative Methods.

Thomas’s latest book, “The (Un)Written Constitution,” was published in November of 2021 and is the topic of Monday’s talk.

Bailey said the book is about the intellectual journey of political players.

“It’s about how constitutional actors and Supreme Court justices arrive at the legal theories that they used to settle interpretive puzzles in the U.S. Constitution,” Bailey said.

Bailey said that anyone with interest in the constitution would find the talk beneficial.

“(The talk is) an opportunity to think through a couple of constitutional puzzles and to think through the ways that various smart people have tried to create a theory that can solve those puzzles,” Bailey said. 

George Thomas’s talk is at 3 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 21, in the Bizzell Memorial Library, Lower Level, room 118.

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