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Chief Justice Joins Law Faculty for Reading

By Dateline Staff on September 16, 2020 in University

Quick Summary

  • U.S. District Court will host the virtual celebration, 10 a.m. Sept. 17
  • Dean Kevin R. Johnson and Professors Ashutosh Bhagwat and Brian Soucek among 100 readers
  • UC’s Constitution Day website includes message from President Drake

Updated 8 a.m. Sept. 16: Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, a graduate of the UC Davis School of Law, also will participate in this Constitution Day event.


The dean of the UC Davis School of Law and two of the school’s professors will celebrate Constitution Day this Thursday (Sept. 17) by participating in a U.S. District Court-sponsored reading of the 233-year-old document.

Kevin R. Johnson, the dean, and Ashutosh Bhagwat and Brian Soucek will be among some 100 people who, from remote locations, will take turns reading parts of the document. Readers will include academics, jurists and high school students.

The sponsoring court has jurisdiction over California’s Eastern District, which stretches from Bakersfield to the Oregon border and includes Sacramento and Fresno. The livestream is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. and last approximately 90 minutes.

The reading will commemorate the anniversary of the Constitution’s signing in 1787, as well as the anniversaries of the 15th Amendment (the right of citizens to vote) and 19th Amendment (the right of women to vote), ratified 150 and 100 years ago, respectively.

Constitution Day at UC

The University of California’s Constitution Day website includes links to the document, the Bill of Rights and the other amendments, and other sites providing more information on the Constitution, including “How Did It Happen?” and a constitutional Q&A.

President Michael V. Drake acknowledges in a message that most UC campuses begin their fall terms in late September, after Constitution Day, and therefore do not always have Constitution Day programs.

Instead, Drake invites the university community to take a few moments to look over the Constitution Day website. “I hope this brief exploration will spark your curiosity and broaden your knowledge of and appreciation for this historic and important document,” he wrote.

“As students of the University of California, you are privileged to have ready access to a range of historical, political, sociological and legal perspectives on the study of the U.S. Constitution. I urge you to explore UC’s print and electronic library holdings on the Constitution, take a Constitution-related course outside your major, e.g., history, political science, law/legal studies or engage in a research-oriented enterprise such as independent study.

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