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Christopher P. Banks


PH.D.   University of Virginia, 1995
J.D.      University of Dayton, 1984
B.A.      University of Connecticut, 1980

Dr. Banks combines his research and teaching interests by studying the political behavior of the judiciary, constitutional law, the courts, and civil rights and liberties. He has published books and articles relating to judicial policy-making, federalism, the legal and criminal process, American politics, terrorism, Bush v. Gore (2000), the politics of court reform, and the judicial politics of the D.C. Circuit. On campus Dr. Banks teaches graduate courses in American politics and law, justice, and society. His undergraduate instruction includes teaching courses on the Supreme Court, constitutional law, civil rights and liberties, the judicial process, and American politics. Before receiving his doctorate, he practiced law in civil and criminal litigation. In addition to practicing law and campaigning for state representative in Connecticut in 1988, he received a gubernatorial appointment to serve as an administrative hearing officer for the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities before earning his doctorate in American government at the University of Virginia.

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities


2012. The U.S. Supreme Court and New Federalism: From the Rehnquist to Roberts Court (Lanham: Roman & Littlefield) (with John C. Blakeman).

2008. Courts and Judicial Policymaking 1st ed. (Englewood: Prentice Hall) (with David M. OʹBrien)

2005. Final Arbiter: The Consequences of Bush v. Gore for Law and Politics, ed. Christopher P. Banks, David B. Cohen, and John C. Green (Albany: State University of New York Press)

2001. Superintending Democracy: The Courts and the Political Process, ed. Christopher P. Banks and John C. Green (Akron: University of Akron Press)

1999. Judicial Politics in the D.C. Circuit Court (Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press)


2013. (In production). U.S. District Court Decision Making in USA Patriot Act Cases after September 11. Justice System Journal (with Steven Tauber). 34 (December): 3

2012-13. International Human Education Rights Commitments in U.S. Courts, International Journal of Human Rights (with Joel R. Carbonell). 17(3): 391-410 (2013)(print version); online version published December 7, 2012 at; DOI:10.1080/13642987.2012.742069

2010-11. Security & Freedom after September 11: The Institutional Limits & Ethical Costs of Terrorism Prosecutions, Public Integrity: A Journal of the American Society for Public Administration 13 (No. 1, Winter): 5-24; DOI 10.2753/PIN1099-9922130101

2009. National Security Letters and Diminishing Privacy Rights. In The Impact of 9/11 and the New Legal Landscape: The Day that Changed Everything. ed. Matthew J. Morgan, 91-102.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan

2008. Chief Justice Roberts, Justice Alito, and New Federalism Jurisprudence, Publius: The Journal of Federalism 38 (No. 3, Summer): 576-600;  doi:10.1093/publius/pjn011

2004. Protecting (or Destroying) Freedom through Law: The USA PATRIOT Act’s Constitutional Implications. In American National Security and Civil Liberties in an Era of Terrorism. ed. David B. Cohen and John W. Wells, 29-70.  New York: Palgrave MacMillan

2003. The Constitutional Politics of Interpreting Section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment, University of Akron Law Review 36 (No. 3): 427-473

2000. The Politics of Court Reform in the U.S. Courts of Appeals, Judicature 84 (No. 1, July/August): 34-43

1999. Reversals of Precedent and Judicial Policy-Making: How Judicial Conceptions of Stare Decisis in the U.S. Supreme Court Influence Social Change, University of Akron Law Review 32 (No. 2): 233-258

1997. The Politics of En Banc Review in the ‘Mini Supreme Court, Journal of Law & Politics 13 (No. 2, Spring): 377-414

1992. The Supreme Court and Precedent: An Analysis of Natural Courts and Reversal Trends, Judicature 25 (No. 5, February/March): 262-268

Christopher P. Banks
Department of Political Science
Bowman Hall

On Academic Leave in Fall 2013

Phone: 330-672-0908