Incorporation and the Excessive Fines Clause

On Monday the Supreme Court granted certiorari in Timbs v. Indiana, which raises the question of whether the Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment applies to the States. Consistent with my research on John Bingham, who advocated the total incorporation of the first eight amendments, I believe that the Court should hold that this provision of the Eighth Amendment, like the Cruel and Unusual Punishments Clause of the same amendment, applies to the States through the Fourteenth Amendment. How that incorporation would affect civil forfeiture, which is another question raised in the case, is something I’ve not thought about enough to express an opinion.

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1 Response

  1. Joe says:

    What John Bingham thought about this topic to me is of limited value on settling the question.

    Anyway, I think the courts already basically hold that excessive fines are a violation of due process & the Supreme Court itself in dicta said it was incorporated. McDonald v. Chicago properly was right to say it was not expressly “held” since the matter was not directly addressed. Still, incorporating the Grand Jury Clause would be a lot more complicated.