CURRENT CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY FOR JURY NULLIFICATION The Constitutions of Maryland (Art

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CURRENT CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY FOR JURY NULLIFICATION The Constitutions of Maryland (Art. XXIII, entire), Indiana (Art. I, sec. 19), Oregon (Art. I, sec. 16), and Georgia (Art. I sec. 1, para. 11, subsec. A), currently have provisions guaranteeing the right of jurors to "judge the law"; that is, to nullify the law. For example, the Georgia Constitution says: "In criminal cases, the defendant shall have a public and speedy trial...and the jury shall be the judges of the law and the facts." Although these provisions have not been strong enough to withstand decades of hostile judicial interpretation, and have relatively little current impact, they do remain "on the books". Attorneys reportedly are able to argue the law in Indiana. Twenty-three states currently include jury nullification provisions in their Constitutions under their sections on freedom of speech, specifically with respect to libel and sedition cases: Alabama (Art.I, Sec. 12); Colorado (Art.II, sec. 10); Connecticut (Art. First, sec. 7); Delaware (Art. I, sec. 5); Georgia (Art. I, sec. II, Para. 1); Kentucky (Bill of Rights, sec. 9); Louisiana (Art. XIV, sec. 9); Maine (Art. I, sec. 4); Mississippi (Art. 3, sec. 13); Missouri (Art. 1, sec. 8); Montana (Art. II, sec. 7); New Jersey (Art. I, sec. 6); New York (Art. I, sec. 8); North Dakota (Art. I, sec. 4); Oregon (Art. I, sec. 16); Pennsylvania (Art. I, sec. 7); South Carolina (Art. II, sec. 21); South Dakota (Art. VI, sec. 5); Tennessee (Art. I, sec. 19); Texas (Art. I, sec. 8); Utah (Art. I, sec. 15); Wisconsin (Art. I, sec. 3); Wyoming (Art. I, sec. 20). Of these, Texas, Delaware, Kentucky, North Dakota, and Tennessee say that the jury is the judge of the law in libel and sedition cases, "as in all other cases." Source: Alan W. Scheflin, "Jury Nullification: the Right to Say No", Southern California Law Review, 45,

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