Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
What you can fairly say, it seems to me, is that, even with a clearly federal constitution, it took the US two centuries to clear up the extradition question in practice, since states were (still are, in some cases), jealous of their rights.

The EU doesn't have a federal constitution: it's composed of sovereign states. Extradition procedures bring sovereignty into play. Getting each member state to apply the same procedures may take a little time.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Dec 7th, 2009 at 02:02:58 AM EST
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Yes, the question was not the wording of the law but the evolving concept of Federalism.  However, by the time the matter was settled by the court in 1987, the 1860 court ruling was considered archaic and not representative of accepted thought on the role of the Federal Government.

I went back, after you quoted from the decisions, and looked at the 1860 opinion, which made for interesting but strange reading.  Given the political environment in 1860 and the nature of the case, it seems strange (to me) that the Court came down on the side of States rights. The issue that ultimately led to the Civil War was differing opinions (particularly by Lincoln) about the rights of States to secede.  That right was apparently the primary one that caused Southern States to believe they could withdraw from the Union without conflict with the US central government. Even after secession the Southern States were extremely guarded of their sovereignty, an often contentious matter between individual States and the Confederate Government that had a serious bearing on the conduct of the war.

Surprizing that it took the US so long to arrive at a USSC decision this important.  Thanks for your posts and patience.

I can swear there ain't no heaven but I pray there ain't no hell. _ Blood Sweat & Tears

by Gringo (stargazing camel at aoldotcom) on Mon Dec 7th, 2009 at 01:31:13 PM EST
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