It’s the Perfect Day to Consider How to Research Presidential Actions

George Washington’s Birthday

I noted in this space a year ago that the official name of the federal holiday marked on the third Monday of February is George Washington’s Birthday, and that it is through the efforts of retailers that we have come to call it “President’s Day” in common vernacular. Whatever name we choose, it is a good day to consider how to research presidential action. If you follow the news at all, then you know that presidents issue “executive orders” to accomplish policy goals and proclamations to note an event or idea. An executive order may mandate subsequent action by executive agencies, such as issuing or rescinding regulations, or by exercising prosecutorial descretion by prioritizing actions based on resource limitations. Other actions include signing statements regarding enacted bills and memoranda. Whatever the action, it will originate in a written document that, unless it concerns a classified action, will likely be published and publicly accessible.

Presidential documents first appear in the Federal Register, the business daily publication of the National Archives and Records Administration. That publication includes proposed rulemakings, final rules, and notices of agencies as well. Presidential documents are then gathered into a Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents that is published online. Depending on the time period of interest, they may be included in the series Public Papers of the Presidents.

Annually the presidential documents are compiled in Title 3 of the Code of Federal Regulations, the publication that compiles and codifies all the regulations that are published in the Federal Register. Unlike the regulations in the other titles, Title 3 contains only presidential documents from a given year, generally approximating the calendar year, and depending on the closing date for publication of that issue of Title 3. Also, Presidential documents are not organized by chapter and section numbers, so they are cited by their name and the page number on which they start, followed by the year of the Title 3 edition.

These publications are available online at govinfo, the second generation digital platform that succeeds FDSys, the first such system launched by the Government Publishing Office. Many are available at the Legal Information Institute, and are also included by commercial legal database providers, such as LexisNexis, Westlaw, Bloomberg Law, and Fastcase. In addition to using full text searching in the online versions, published finding aids include an index to the CFR, and lists of sections affected for the Federal Register and parts affected for CFR. In the library, you will find the print version of C.F.R. and of recent issues of the Federal Registare in the Federal Materials Room. For additional information, please see the Presidential Materials section of Susan Boland’s Research Guide to Administrative Law.  

This Week: Research Training and Resources for Taxing Problems

Research Training Sessions

  • Tuesday, February 13th
    • Professor Oliver’s Section 1
      • Federal Law with Ron Jones
      • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M. in Room 100A
    • Professor Oliver’s Section 3
      • Federal Law with Ron Jones
      • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 100A
  • Thursday, February 15th
    • Professor Smith’s Section 5
        • Federal Law with Susan Boland
        • 9:00 – 10:40 A.M. in Room 100A
    • Professor Bradley’s Section 4
      • Federal Law with Shannon Kemen
      • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M. in Room 302
    • Professor Bradley’s Section 2
      • Federal Law with Shannon Kemen
      • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 302
  • Wednesday, February 21st
    • Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn with Susan Boland and Ashley Russell
      • Brief Citation Tools; Lunch provided & earn Lexis points.
      • 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302; RSVP by February 19th.

 

Featured Resources

Income tax filing season has launched; with April 15th a Sunday and the 16th Emancipation Day in Washington, D.C. and Patriots Day in some New England states, you’ve got an extra two days to submit your federal return this year. Here are resources to help with that, or your studies for income taxation.

 

Don’t Forget Valentine’s Day

We’re sure you’ve already remembered your sweetheart, so check out the library display on “Love and the Law.”

Black History Month Begins – Employment Statistics

Minority Hiring at Law Firms

Associate Director for Public and Research Services Susan Boland has included information on the representation of African Americans in law firms in this week’s library display. The statistics show the percentage of lawyers at the associate and partner label nationwide and in Ohio’s three major legal markets. You can view the information in the Marx Law Library’s digital display or view a PDF of it here.

Research Training Sessions

    • Tuesday, February 6th
      • Freedom Center Journal training with Susan Boland
      • 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
    • Tuesday, February 13th
      • Professor Oliver’s Section 1
        • Federal Law with Ron Jones
        • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M. in Room 100A
      • Professor Oliver’s Section 3
        • Federal Law with Ron Jones
        • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 100A
    • Thursday, February 15th
      • Professor Smith’s Section 5
        • Federal Law with Susan Boland
        • 9:00 – 10:40 A.M. in Room 100A
      • Professor Bradley’s Section 4
        • Federal Law with Shannon Kemen
        • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M. in Room 302
      • Professor Bradley’s Section 2
        • Federal Law with Shannon Kemen
        • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 302

 

Featured Resources

There Oughta Be A Law!

And there may be one…

The sentiment expressed in the post’s title, which has been used as the title of a newspaper comic strip created by Al Fagaly and Harry Shorten, commonly comes to mind when one complains about a situation that seems unfair or patently stupid. “The law” in the United States is made up of two distinctive sources: court decisions of first impression and later ones modifying them, together making the “common law,” and statutes, which are enacted by legislative bodies. The phrase typically refers to this latter source.

Statutory law affects each of us in some way every day. Obeying speed limits, paying taxes, avoiding littering — these are all responses to statutes and ordinances that establish requirements for participating in society. Law students and lawyers do well by learning how to research the history of a given set of laws, i.e., how the sausage got made. To that end, please check out this week’s library display on statutory interpretation, and consider the following resources:

 

Upcoming Research Training Sessions

  • Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn
    • Researching Paper Topics with Susan Boland and Ashley Russell
    • Thursday, February 1st, 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
    • Lunch & Lexis points, please R.S.V.P. by January 30th!
  • Legislative & Statutory Interpretation with Susan Boland
    • Thursday, February 1st, 3:00 – 4:00 P.M. in Room 306

 

Research Training and Using Technology: Opportunities Abound This Week in the Law Library

Distinguish Yourself: Know Your Productivity Applications

Learning to use productivity applications commonly used in law offices is a valuable skill. The Marx Law Library has subscribed to the Procertas Legal Tech Assessment, a tool that offers tutorials for Microsoft Word and Excel, and for Adobe Acrobat. We are making the LTA available to all law students this semester. Please join us for a kickoff session on Wednesday, January 24th, at 12:15 P.M. in Room 118. We’ll hear from Procertas founder D. Casey Flaherty, best known for his writings on the need for attorneys to incorporate technology into their practice, and to offer more value to their clients. Pizza will be provided, but advance registration is required.

Upcoming Research Sessions

  • Tuesday, January 23rd
    • Professor Oliver’s Section 3
      • Advanced Searching with Ronald Jones
      • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 100A
  • Thursday, January 25th
    • Professor Smith’s Section 5
      • Advanced Searching with Susan Boland
      • 9:00 – 10:40 A.M. in Room 100A
    • Professor Bradley’s Section 4
      • Advanced Searching with Shannon Kemen
      • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M. in Room 302
    • Professor Bradley’s Section 2
      • Advance Searching with Shannon Kemen
      • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 302
    • Law Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn
      • Business Filings with Shannon Kemen and Ashley Russell
      • 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
      • Lunch &Lexis points! Please register in advance
  • Thursday, February 1st
    • Law Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn
      • Researching Paper Topics with Susan Boland and Ashley Russell
      • 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
      • Lunch &Lexis points! Please register in advance.
    • Legislative & Statutory Interpretation with Susan Boland
      • 3:00 – 4:00 P.M. in Room 306

 

Featured Resources

 

Warm Wishes to You as We Get Off to a Shivering Start

Welcome to Spring Semester

We in the library can’t do anything about the frigid weather, other than to suggest that you dress in layers, but we do give you our warm wishes for a successful spring semester, and for our 3L students, a successful final one. In addition to our wishes, the library stands at the ready with resources and services to help you accomplish the goals you’ve set. Among these are the following:

  • Research Guides on a host of topics
  • More than 1,000 CALI lessons to reinforce your studies and let you test your knowledge.
  • Online study aids available 24/7 from West Academic and Lexis OverDrive, including top study aids series.
  • Legal research training sessions led by our reference librarians nearly every week, along with Law Library Lunch & Learning Sessions, where we partner with our information service vendors to bring you the latest updates.
  • PowerNotes, an online service that lets you annotate your research and easily generate outlines of your research findings.
  • Beginning this semester, the Procertas Legal Technology Assessment, an online tutorial and testing platform to help you become more proficient with Microsoft Word and Excel, and Adobe Acrobat. They are important tools universally used by lawyers.

And be sure to bring your questions, simple and complicated, to any of our librarians. We’re happy to give you a hand!

Upcoming Research Sessions

  • Thursday, January 25th
    • Professor Smith’s Section 5
      • Advanced Searching with Susan Boland
      • 9:00 – 10:40 A.M. in Room 100A
    • Professor Bradley’s Section 4
      • Advanced Searching with Shannon Kemen
      • 10:40 A.M. – 12:05 P.M. in Room 302
    • Professor Bradley’s Section 2
      • Advance Searching with Shannon Kemen
      • 1:30 – 2:55 P.M. in Room 302
    • Law Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn
      • Business Filings with Shannon Kemen and Ashley Russell
      • 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
      • Lunch &Lexis points! Please register in advance.

 

The Law Library’s “Cuban Connection”

As a youngster growing up in Hialeah, Florida in the 1960’s and early 70’s, I had many friends who either were born in Cuba and emigrated to South Florida, or who were born shortly after their parents made the trip. Some of them remain my closest friends still. Cuba, its politics, and refugees from the island who lived in what was then Dade County were a big part of everyday life. When I arrived at UC nearly nine years ago to lead the law library staff, I was told a little about Jorge Luis Carro, who served as one of my predecessors from 1976 to 1986, and as acting dean of the College of Law from 1978 to 1979. Chelsea Jordan and Edwin W. Patterson III have authored a fascinating article about Professor Carro in the December issue of CBA Report, the monthly magazine of the Cincinnati Bar Association. The article recounts Carro’s life in Cuba, his role during and after Castro’s revolution, and the life he led in the U.S. after he joined his family here in 1967. The article is a must-read for those who are interested in U.S.-Cuba relations, and for friends of the law school and the law library.

-Ken Hirsh