The Constitution, the Courts, and the Culture

The proper role of the courts in construing the Constitution is one of the most hotly contested issues in American society. Competing conceptions of the role of the courts animate election battles and fuel disputes over Supreme Court rulings, judicial nominations, and proposed constitutional amendments.

EPPC’s program on The Constitution, the Courts, and the Culture, under the direction of EPPC Distinguished Senior Fellow Edward Whelan, explores these competing conceptions and promotes principles of constitutional originalism and judicial restraint. We focus, in particular, on what is at stake for American culture writ large—for the ability of the American people to engage in responsible self-government and to maintain the “indispensable supports” of “political prosperity” that George Washington (and other Founders) understood “religion and morality” to be.

Through his program work, including his award-winning blogging on National Review Online’s Bench Memos, Mr. Whelan has been an influential commentator on confirmation battles for Supreme Court justices and lower-court judges.

Click here to sign up for email distributions of blog posts and other writings by Ed Whelan.

Program Publications

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Alito Makes Masterful Argument to ‘Overturn’ Roe v. Wade

Edward Whelan

Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Center is a masterful account of why Roe v. Wade was wrong from the start and why it should be jettisoned. For liberals shocked by the prospective ruling, and for conservatives who thought it might never happen, it’s worth taking a look at Alito’s clear reasoning.


The New York Post / May 3, 2022

Outstanding Draft Majority Opinion in Dobbs

Edward Whelan

Above all, the superb quality of the draft is compelling evidence that it is genuine.


National Review Online / May 3, 2022

With Jackson Nomination, Senate Republicans Have an Opportunity

Edward Whelan

If Senate Republicans assess Ketanji Brown Jackson on the basis of judicial philosophy, and don’t succumb to political pressure because of her race and sex, they will responsibly fulfill their constitutional duty to advise and consent.


CNN / February 25, 2022

EPPC Distinguished Senior Fellow Ed Whelan on the Supreme Court Vacancy

Edward Whelan

In this exclusive Q&A, Ed Whelan, who directs EPPC’s program on the Constitution, the Courts, and the Culture, discusses the effort to replace retiring Justice Stephen Breyer.



Some Quick Observations on Oral Argument in Dobbs

Edward Whelan

EPPC Distinguished Senior Fellow Ed Whelan offers his initial impressions of oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.


National Review Online / December 1, 2021

John Roberts and the Abortion Precedents

Edward Whelan

The Chief Justice has a chance to protect the Supreme Court, strike a blow for democracy, and overturn bad decisions.


The Wall Street Journal / November 30, 2021

DOJ Faces Steep Slope in United States v. Texas

Edward Whelan

The justices who dissented from the Supreme Court’s denial of the abortion providers’ request for emergency relief against the Texas Heartbeat Act might think that they have a path to winning a majority in the DOJ case against the law. But the path is steep and deceptively treacherous.


National Review Online / October 26, 2021

Program Appearances

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VIDEO: Ed Whelan on the Leaked Dobbs Draft Opinion

Firing Line with Margaret Hoover / May 13, 2022

VIDEO: Ed Whelan on the Leaked Dobbs Opinion

EWTN News /

AUDIO: Ed Whelan Discusses KBJ on SCOTUS 101 Podcast

SCOTUS 101 podcast / March 18, 2022

AUDIO: Ed Whelan discusses President Biden’s Supreme Court Nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson

Issues, Etc. Podcast / February 28, 2022

AUDIO: Ed Whelan Discusses SCOTUS Nomination at Federalist Society Virtual Event

The Federalist Society / March 1, 2022

AUDIO: Ed Whelan on Texas Heartbeat Act Cases

“Amarica’s Constitution” podcast / December 14, 2021

VIDEO: Ed Whelan Discusses Biden’s Court-Packing Threat on Fox Business

Fox Business / December 8, 2021