Barack Obama, Harvard Law Review

Barack Obama’s Secret Case Comment, Revealed

If you were skeptical of the notion that Barack Obama never published anything as a member of the Harvard Law Review, your skepticism was justified. From Ben Smith and Jeffrey Ressner, over at Politico:

Gannett House mushroom cloud.jpg[A]n unsigned — and previously unattributed — 1990 article unearthed by Politico offers a glimpse at Obama’s views on abortion policy and the law during his student days, and provides a rare addition to his body of work.

The six-page summary, tucked into the third volume of the year’s Harvard Law Review, considers the charged, if peripheral, question of whether fetuses should be able to file lawsuits against their mothers. Obama’s answer, like most courts': No.

As ATL readers know — see the posts collected under the Harvard Law Review category — ascertaining authorship of HLR student-written work can be controversial. How do we know Obama wrote this case comment?

The Obama campaign swiftly confirmed Obama’s authorship of the fetal rights article Thursday after a source told Politico he’d written it. The campaign also provided a statement on Harvard Law Review letterhead confirming that the unsigned piece was Obama’s – the only record of the anonymous authors is kept in the office of the Review president – and that records showed it was the only piece he’d written for the Review.

It’s pretty cool that “the only record of the anonymous authors is kept in the office of the Review president.” Like a Masonic temple, Gannett House is the repository of many secrets.
Having a hitherto unacknowledged case comment is better than having a hitherto unacknowledged baby girl.
Update: You can access a PDF of the Obama case comment over at TaxProf Blog.
Exclusive: Obama’s lost law review article [Politico]
Earlier: Barack Obama and the Harvard Law Review

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